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Back To Love

Back To Love - #NakedMoms

Do you remember those first few weeks of being a mom? The feelings of excitement, nervousness, and overwhelming love that caught in your chest and brought tears to your eyes with random glances of your new little human? I do. One memory, in particular, of nursing Ayva at exactly 5 AM every single morning, is so vibrant, that I can’t believe that was nearly 5 years ago! I can remember looking at her in awe, feeling like my purpose had finally been realized, and wondering how God had decided that I was worthy enough to mother this child.

Over time, that love hasn’t disappeared.

It’s definitely changed, though, now that Ayva barely sits still. I’m not able to cuddle her on my lap as often, stroking her hair, and gazing lovingly at her. Instead, I’m chasing her around life, trying to keep her alive as she discovers the world with preschool bravery and the energy to match. These days, I’m more likely to be issuing directives, “Pick up your toys”, “Take your cup to the sink”, “Go put on your jammies” than singing her the made up lullabies that I used to when she was a baby.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s still plenty of loving going on. Sweet kisses, and tight hugs around the neck with  strong arms make my heart melt as easily now as they did back then. But, life, you know? The other day, I stopped to reflect on how life had changed for Ayva and me. The older she gets, the more responsibilities we both have, and the ways that we show love to each other changes. There’s no more idyllic moments in the wee morning, or spontaneous crying (for the most part), but my heart still beats for this little girl.

Love evolves. It always does.

As the Mother, I’m  pretty much responsible for creating the blueprint for the way that our love will evolve. I make it my duty to show and prove love multiple times a day, even in between the time outs and tantrums. When Ayva becomes a teenager, and her hormones are going crazy, and even if my loving her doesn’t make sense, she’ll be able to fall back on these days and this love. That means my demonstrations of love need to be meaningful and plentiful, and for every directive, there needs to be an “I Love You”. For every time out, there needs to be a cuddle session. For every, “Just one second”, there needs to be a phone down, all eyes on Ayva, focused, engaged, intentional conversation.

I’m going back to love. Reaffirming my dedication to motherhood, and to Ayva. Yup, y’all. I’m getting mushy with it, and I’m not ashamed. She can’t remember those first few weeks of her life. Those memories are for me. But these memories, these days…she WILL remember this. And she deserves to know how excited, nervous, and overwhelming in love with her that I am.

On the 14th of every month, I’ll be revealing the truth about motherhood with 12 other writers. Follow the hashtag #NakedMoms, and check out the links below  from the other moms and find out which stories resonate with you the most!

Loving the Mom in Me by Stephanie at When Crazy Meets Exhaustion

Loving While Waiting by Heather at Diary of A First Time Mom

Present in Love by Laila at Only Laila

I Loved You Before You Were Born by Joyce at Mommy Talk Show

My Mom Was Right About Motherhood by Thien-Kim at I’m Not The Nanny

Being a Loving Mom Begins With Loving Yourself by Steph at Confessions of A Stay At Home Mom

I Love Being a Working Mom by Vanesse at Mommy Works A Lot

How to Balance Your Checkbook of Love by Diamonte at Liberated Mommy

Naked Love. Learning to Be Vulnerable by Summer at The Dirty Floor Diaries

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Summer Len Davis

Wednesday 26th of February 2014

This is so true and these thoughts consume me where Styles is concerned. He's going to be 13 in August. He's getting older. And I don't get to cuddle him anymore or stroke his hair and kiss that soft crease where his neck meets his shoulder. How do I show my tween boy that I love him? He has the worst timing ever and only ever wants to talk to me when I'm mid-thought or on the phone. He stopped me the other day and told me that he wanted me to reward him for little things regarding school just by sitting and watching one episode of Dr. Who with him without my phone or computer on my lap. So simple. It's crazy how love evolves, it evolved right under me and I wasn't able to keep up. This is a great reminder, Brandi. Thank you.

Laila

Friday 21st of February 2014

I've been thinking about this a lot lately! My son's needs are definitely different at 7 than they were at 7months. I need to be present with him differently. I'm trying to make sense of that since my work schedule can be so hectic. Thanks for this reminder.

WhenCrazyMeetsExhaustion

Tuesday 18th of February 2014

This just melted my heart. The end ;)

Patricia Cook

Friday 14th of February 2014

I think this post is so honest, and lovely. When I was raising my five children, life had it's ups and downs, but my kids always knew they were well loved. Children won't remember the toys or the things you gave them, but they will remember if they felt loved or not. Your little daughter is very lucky to have you for a mama.