The first days have been unreal. And for the first time in a long time, I have been forced to be mindful, every second of every day. It's odd how time slips away so painlessly when you're too busy to notice, you'd think that would be when its passage would be felt more keenly, because time is presumably precious when the hours in the day to get everything done that you're meant to.
Yet during those first nights, spent in the hospital with GM sleeping and trying to recover by my side (he has, true to form, admitted in retrospect that he was maybe just a little bit terrified that something would go wrong with me or the baby, although my mother has mentioned several times how calm he sounded when they were on the phone), and even when we got home to our flat where the bedroom wall paint has barely had a chance to dry, I have never felt the passage of time so intimately, painfully almost.
Looking at this beautiful creature flailing its arms in my lap, how little she is, how perfectly formed, acting on instinct only and seeking comfort, feeding, sleep with admirable singularity, and knowing that when this second, minute, hour, night, has passed, it is gone forever. She will grow a little, become more sentient, that moment will never return, it will be lost. I try to savour these moments, etch them into my brain somehow, daring barely to blink in case I miss something.
Of course, remembering that level of detail is impossible, especially when one is getting by on 1.5 hrs of sleep at a time. But that feeling will stay with me. When they say parenthood changes you forever, I think to me, knowledge of that feeling is what is implied. Once it's tasted, it lingers and though it wanes, it hangs like a shadow in the back of my mind always, even in the daytime. Is it love? I'm not sure. But it's something bigger than myself, something outside the scope of just me, this baby, my lovely, amazing man. And it amplifies the sound of sand passing through the hour glass of my life, it echoes in my head drowning out everything else.