I’ve never felt so close and so grounded than with what I’m experiencing with my second son. This fusion, this bubble… it’s ours. Every night I get to heal, to care, to live in this bubble and to bond with him. This time around has been far less terrifying than with my first kid. When you experience love for the first time – the love for a child, for your child – it’s so powerful. You realize that terror is inseparably braided with love. And once you’re aware of it, you have no choice but to trust life and to let go, to live and to blindly love your child. Because you know that you are helpless for everything else.
To not be able to write or to hold a big book and having to soak in the poetry of our daily life is extremely rich. I have this desire to write and to put words on what is happening in our little bubble, but at some point, I simply had to let go. I realized there might be some things that would remain unspoken. That some moments would never be told and would only exist in my heart, which is why I imagine we love them forever: they forge bonds for life. As much as I didn’t feel ready when I had my first-born, because of basic material considerations and because I was thrown back into grad-school, as much as with him I told to myself 'No, this time, I want to experience it.' There might be no immediate writing as I thought there would be, but that’s fine. I am totally ok with this idea, humbled. We are in such a Facebook world, in which we have to say everything, to repeat every cute or funny word our children say. This time around, I thought let’s just live what is happening inside – of me and of this bubble. It enriched my inner self and my soul, it enriched my mind and that was it! It won’t be spoken and maybe it’ll help me in five or ten years to find the right words to write a poem. But for now, I have to accept that it was kind of a 'vacation' from any critical thinking. I embraced it and it’s beautiful. For real, in letting go, what emerges is truly beautiful.
The difficult part was to accept that we are now a blended family. This child isn’t solely my child anymore, but also the brother of kids who aren’t my own. This is very, very… very tricky. It was extremely difficult to experience it first hand when he was born. I struggled a lot in the minutes, hours, days, and weeks that followed his birth. Because those children who aren’t mine, well, they – fortunately – made this baby their own. They love him, they touch him, they kiss him… but during this time, I have to refrain my mama bear’s instincts to protect him. It’s easier with my older son: he comes in when I’m naked or when I nurse. I let him take the baby in his arms. It never bothered me with him so I must accept that my partner’s children also deserve the same space. But it’s not easy. I feel naked a lot, physically and emotionally. Before his arrival, they fully respected my privacy. But now that he’s around, it’s like if I’ve disappeared. I don’t exist anymore. They come in to see and kiss their little brother and, whether I liked it or not, they trespass this bubble of ours. And of course, they often do it when I’m half naked, milk flowing out of my boobs. It’s delicate. And it’s still difficult.
He’s our hyphen baby, the link between both our families. He – literally – has our two names. When we completed his birth certificate at the hospital, they asked us if we were sure we wanted the hyphen between both our last names. We said, 'Yes, absolutely!' He is the baby who welds our families together and makes it one. Since he’s been born, we have so much help. We are besieged by love from every side. The grandparents are wonderful, my partner’s kids are wonderful: they arrived at the hospital with gifts purchased by his ex-wife. My own ex gave me a lot of baby’s items and his girlfriend, her breast pump. This child gathered all the small pieces that had been broken before and stuck them back together. All the parts of our fragmented families are now resoldered, thanks to him.