It's no secret that, while I have loved each of my babies with my whole heart, I don't love having babies. It's not easy for anyone, but I especially find that the closer my babies get to a year old, the better mom I am and the more I can enjoy it.
I'm trying to experience this last baby a little bit differently. This evening I was up in his nursery, rocking him while he had a little pre-bedtime catnap in my arms. His hair was fluffy from his bath and his long legs stretching his 3-month sleeper to capacity. His little chubby fist clutched my sweatshirt strings and his mouth gently worked the pacifier.
In that moment, I was so grateful to have my baby. I hope these moments are what I remember (and then share as a grandmother, casting the whole relentlessly exhausting and frustrating job of motherhood in an inaccurately rosy light), rather than the difficulty of it all, and the times I feel like it's all too much.
(Like now, five minutes later when he's howling because he realized I put him in his swing and the two older kids are covered head to toe in spaghetti sauce and imperiously demanding drink refills. SIGH.)