I just used up a bag of flour that I’ve had in my pantry for the past couple of years.
I only had it for the occasional sauce thickening agent, or… uh… why did I have that bag of flour? I guess it’s just one those things that is expected. One must have flour or you cannot consider yourself a member of polite society, or something like that.
The point is, I used almost all of it in the last month.
I actually used the flour — to bake.
Since becoming a mother, I have gone through a metamorphosis. Recently, I have emerged with a fresh desire to actually experience such ordinary activities as eating and dressing.
I want to avoid flat, lifeless experiences like shopping in a grocery store with tinny muzak playing in the background, dead air circulating, and food rotting in piles with Sale signs flashing in front of my face.
I want to roll my own flour tortillas from scratch and make fresh pasta.
I want to grow a fall garden and sew my own clothes. I want to keep chickens in the back yard (yes, we can do that in Austin, TX, I think…) so I can eat fresh eggs every morning. I want to avoid buying things that come in packages.
I’ve realized that this all ties into some new changes in Annika. I have been feeling more free than I have in months because I am finally able to get up when Annika falls asleep. She is sleeping a little longer, and a little deeper these days and it has given me a new found sense of freedom.
But the truth is, it has only been recently that I have even wanted to get up again.
For the first months of Annika’s life I sat with her during most naps and held her, breathed in her sweet newborn-ness. I loved snuggling with her and most nights, I couldn’t wait until bedtime when I could snuggle with her tininess. I loved the moment she fell asleep when her solid little legs would stretch out on top of my legs, her soft breath slowing, her little eyes would shut, and I could see her dreaming and happy because she was in the crook of my arms.
Something about becoming a mother has made me stop, take a look around, and really be here, right now, something I have been attempting, and failing miserably at, for several years.
Having a child has breathed new life into this world, into my world.
When I first thought about having a child, I thought I would stay at home with her, for her. Not for me. I looked at it as a sacrifice.
There is a common expression, “gift of life.” I always assumed that meant the parent giving life to the child. And now? I see it the other way around.
Martha Wood is an attached mama who lives in Austin, Tx. You can read more of her blog posts at www.momsoap.blogspot.com