one day, when we’ve both grown old in our bones and sun-stained from a dozen summers, you’ll ask me what it was like when you were new.
in the beginning, I’ll say, you were very small and very still, and we didn’t realize the greatness of what we’d done. and then you grew. you opened your eyes and reached for the glasses on my nose, and just like that, you were the only thing we knew.
it wasn’t easy to become a mother. the first year was another birth entirely, perhaps even more painful, in a different way, and there were a hundred hazy lamp-lit nights spent cradling you at my breast, rocking and humming and wondering what in the world I had done.
but it was easy to love you. you were so velvety and veiled in fuzz, like an august peach. you smelled like milk and honey and i marveled at your purity, not only of your skin and bones and being, but of the air between us, so warm and colorless, not yet stained with any words or actions.
you were new for such a short time, sweet love. and now, look at you. my god, how you bloom. when I think I’ve got a handle on your heart, you peel away and spill your spirit in a different direction entirely, always keeping me on my toes, forever unfolding and unfolding again. i can’t exactly drape words over this first year. it was milk stains and profoundly practiced patience and counting the coupled breaths you took as you were sleeping. but it was something else, too. it was the feeling of spring on the back of my neck, the feeling of something coming, something swelling somewhere between my skin and the air. a never-ending season of newness. of fumbling forward. of change. of grace.
and now, here we are. a year, to the day. we wake, we tangle, we collapse, we rise. when you ask me what it was like when you were new, I’ll cup your soft hands in mine and say, “my dear, sweet love, it was the beginning of your life, and too, it was the beginning of mine.”