Before having my babies, there were things about babies and motherhood that I knew I would love, that I expected to love. There were things I couldn’t wait for. There were things that are obviously wonderful to anyone; the little smiles, the little hand wrapped around your finger, that indescribable baby smell. All of this I knew I would love. Since I had my babies, I have discovered a slough of other little things that I had no idea I would love so much. In no particular order…
- When Elbow was really small, I loved unwrapping her from her swaddler when she woke up for her naps. Her little arms and legs would bust out of the fabric with such enthusiasm. She was just months old and super tiny, but ready to go.
- I love it when I have one of my girls snuggled up on my shoulder and the back of their head is pressed gently against my cheek. It’s a feeling of closeness I can’t describe.
- When Elbow wakes up, she makes this little frown that is beyond adorable. Mothers are probably not supposed to love a frown so much, but I have to admit I look forward to it every time.
- When Bug was just a little thing, when she would fall asleep in my arms, if she was placed right, she would have a tendency to lick my bare shoulder. Every time, it made my eyes tear up with love and giggles.
- At every stage so far, I can’t get enough of kissing the palms of their hands. I cover them with kisses constantly, but I never thought I would love the palms of their little squishy hands so much.
- Now that my babies are bigger, when I carry them they participate. They hold on the me, move around, look around, and move their hands around my arms and shoulders. I love that feeling of their little hands.Every time it reminds me that I am mama. Every time it makes my heart swell. Every time, I have to pause and enjoy the sweetness of the moment.
- I love watching them work it out. I don’t help them with every little thing because I want them to learn. My girls learn by doing and learn by watching each other all the time, and I nurture that, and I love seeing it happen. I love watching Bug slowly discover that when she pulls on the knob, the drawer opens. I love seeing Elbow holding a book and figuring out what she needs to do to open the book and turn the pages.
More than anything, and this is definitely a perk of having twins, I love the way they make each other laugh. They find each other hilarious. I lovewatching them while they are seated in their high chairs, facing each other and Bug is repeatedly doing something, anything, like making a sound or shaking her head, and Elbow just thinks it is the funniest thing she has ever seen. Or when Elbow gets caught by the music and starts to bounce to the beat while holding on to the wall, or the toy box, or her jumper, her little 15 pound body swaying to the music, and Bug gets that little grin and then laughs as she watches her sister dance. Baby laughter is a beautiful sound, but twin laughter is pure joy.
Motherhood is one of those things that no one will ever really be able to explain to anyone, not even to another mother. It is different for everyone. But I am certain we can all agree that joy is at the core of all of it.