It’s been a year since Mama wrote to you. I had planned to write to you every six months, but things got a little busy when you turned two, and I didn’t get round to penning my thoughts down then. Mama is deeply sorry about that…
You see, I was *just* pregnant with your little sibling then. Whilst it was a much easier first trimester this time (Mama didn’t hurl at all even though I was mostly nauseated), I didn’t want to give up any minute I could spend with you. I took less photos, wrote less often on the blog and in my diary, and soaked up the here-and-now whenever we spent time together. Mama knew that we wouldn’t have much one-on-one time once your sibling is born, and I wanted us to be…us.
And us, it has been. Mama may not have been able to take you out as often as before owing to the difficulty of catching up with your Speedy-Gonzales-esque sprints with a growing bump, and your increasing requests to be carried when I am physically unable to do so as the pregnancy progresses, but we spent a lot of time at home and in the neighbourhood making believe with your growing family of soft toys (including Elephant, Minnie, Bear Bear, Pooh Bear, Olaf, Bunny and many more!), playing with your kitchen, making burgers and ice cream cones out of Lego, singing, dancing, playing musical instruments, reading, blowing and catching (I blow, you catch) bubbles on the balcony and even baking. Oh yes, we cuddle lots too. Papa has been taking you for twice-weekly swims, when you would demand to sit on his back whilst he ferries you around in the water, and squeal in delight when you playfully push his head down under; I would slowly make my way across the pool and wait in the shallow areas for you, if and when you decide to mess with the water jets and scoop water in and out with your sandcastle-building toys, you know, scaled-down activities that Mama can manage whilst being heavily pregnant. Such wonderful times together.
Through it all, we continue to be surprised by how much of a little adult you are and how quickly you are growing up. You say the most astounding things and ask the most unexpected questions. “Can you manage, Mama?” when you see me having difficulty in completing a task. “Is your stomach painful? You must wear this!” when you catch me in the middle of a contraction or a bout of pelvic pain, and run off to get my maternity belt from the wardrobe. “Mama, I help you!” when you see me having difficulties pulling up my shorts as I struggle to bend over the rock-hard bump that is your little sibling. You make your demands for our affection loud and clear and show yours for us unabashedly. “Papa, I want hug and kiss and pat pat.” “Mama, kisssssss!” When you catch me in tears, you fling whatever you have in your hands aside and run to hand me a piece of tissue paper and give me a hug, often rubbing my back gently and whispering, “It’s okay, Mama” as you do so. Whilst I am proud and thoroughly delighted at the being you have blossomed into, your acts of love, words and knowing tantrums do little to assuage my guilt.
The tantrums…they could be ignited by something as simple as wanting Mama instead of Papa to brush your teeth, or Mama being unable to carry you as I am in pain. Whatever the reason, I know it has to do with your attachment to and longing for me, especially with a little sibling on the way. To watch you cry helplessly and know that you do not understand why I am unable to do certain things with you…breaks my heart into a million pieces. On occasions when I was unable to give in to your requests and reasoning failed to work, I had to be stern and I raised my voice at you . You, being the sweet, loving angel that you are, settled down quickly most of the time when I did that and you have no idea how sad I am to know that you did it out of fear of making me unhappy. “I want Mama to be happy”, you would say once you have calmed down. I often weeped, after I put you to bed, and mulled over that guilt for days after, because I know why you were upset on those occasions, and the thing is I don’t know how to reconcile your needs with what I can provide at this point.
Things are going to change very drastically when your little sibling arrives, how so…I do not know. I simply pray that we can go through the transition as a family of four, no matter how hard it may be for all of us and trust that everything will turn out alright.
Faith, you may not understand this now but I want you to know that I love you very much, much more than you will ever know. I want you to know that even though I may not be able to give you my full attention in the near future, I will try my best to be a doting and present mother to you and your little sibling, and a supportive wife to Papa. Please give me time to be good at balancing my different acts, and I promise Mama will be back in no time, taking you out on one-on-one frozen yogurt dates and runs to the playground. There will be lots of cuddles too, as many as I can dole out, and most importantly, as many as you would like me to give.
You will always be my baby.
Loving you always,