Hello. Is there anybody still out there?
I'm a little shocked to discover that it's been over four months since I last posted - and this isn't because I have nothing further to say on the experience of either infertility or motherhood, but more because I simply haven't had time to transfer my thoughts from my head on to the page (I know that I've also been pretty lax with regard to commenting, but have tried my best to keep up with those whose stories I've been following for a while and have been thinking of you all).
Even though I'd spent years longing for a baby, I was somehow ill-prepared for the reality of life with a newborn. Throughout my pregnancy, I found it difficult to believe unconditionally in the idea that there would definitely be a baby at the end of it all. It really wasn't until they first handed Little Miss to me just after she was delivered and I looked down at this tiny little creature that I first realised that I was henceforth going to be a mother. And yes, it is more wonderful than I could possibly have imagined, but also more terrifying than I could possibly have imagined. Those first few weeks were truly hard. Mr H went back to work after his two weeks of statutory paternity leave, and was away throughout the working week. Little Miss H suffered from colic, and so we spent night after night pacing up and down, up and down - her screaming inconsolably, me crying with pain from the c-section.
But now the blurry intensity of those first few weeks, when day and night seemed to meld into one, has begun to fade. I won't go so far as to say that we are in a routine, but there is at least some rhythm to our days. Little Miss is now almost five months old, and it goes without saying that she is a source of extraordinary joy to both her parents. She smiles and laughs, coos and gurgles, and is intensely curious about the world around her. She is (for the time being at least) sleeping through the night, but the trade off for an unbroken night's sleep appears to be that she does not nap much during the day - she will only sleep when out and about in the buggy or car, and so I find myself doing endless circuits of the park while thinking about all the things I should/could be doing/writing if only I were at home.
But now I long to be writing again. I'm itching to get back to my work, and to finish the dissertation. I also have a series of posts in varying states of completion - my birth story, some thoughts on how it feels to be repeatedly asked when I will be having another baby and, since this is now inevitably going to turn into a 'parenting after infertility and loss' blog, one on my current obsession - weaning. What would you like to hear about first?