Sorry this post is all over the place; I'm a bit emotional.
Monday I go back to work and while I love my job, I certainly love being a mommy to Anna Claire and Mallory much, much more. I've always known that I would have to go back to work, but now that the day is right around the corner, I am really struggling with my emotions. Tonight Walter and I went to dinner for the first time since my birthday, May 29th, five days before the girls were born. I was looking at the pictures on his cell phone and there was one of Anna Claire just a few days old and her head was resting in the palm of Walter's hand. She was SO SMALL. I burst out in tears right in the middle of dinner because I just could not believe how much she has grown. It's already hard to remember them so small and what it felt like to hold two such tiny babies in my arms, and that breaks my heart.
I have been home with the girls for four wonderful months and I have no idea how to leave them come Monday. I keep telling myself that we are in the best of situations! The girls get to stay with Granny four days a week and Grandmom one day a week (yay! we are so blessed the girls don't have to go to daycare), and everyone knows teachers have it best for raising a family! But it's still going to be so hard. They are growing up so fast; I can't yet imagine not being there for every single minute.
And that's the one thing I've learned in my short time as a mom - time flies by. In the first four months of their lives, the girls have grown and changed more than I ever imagined they could, but I've been right here with them for all of it. When I look back over the last few months and think of everything I have been here for I am so thankful - the first time they made eye contact with me, cooing for the first time, their first smiles and giggles, the middle of the night feedings, the cuddling and kisses, all the little memories that are created everyday. I just can't stop thinking about all the moments I'm going to miss not being with them during the day.
Lately I've been worried about how to "get it all done" once I'm back to work - laundry, cleaning, cooking - and what I've come to realize is that those things aren't going to be that important once I'm home in the afternoon. That time is for Anna Claire and Mallory and the rest will have to take care of itself. The last thing I want in the afternoons is to be stressing out because dinner isn't cooked when I should be enjoying my baby girls. They will have bottles to drink, clean clothes, dry diapers, and a mommy and daddy who love them with all their hearts. And if we go to bed at night with dirty dishes in the sink - so be it.
Every day I look into their eyes and am in absolute awe over how beautiful and amazing they are, how different they are, and how much I love them both. I can't yet imagine what I will feel like Sunday night and especially Monday when I trade in my "stay-at-home-mom" hat for the "working mom" hat. Right now, though, I'm doing everything I can to preserve the memories we've already created together as well as the new ones, but the fact is, I can take all the pictures and video I can, make all the scrapbooks, and blog all day, but none of these things can truly capture the emotions of the moment, the sweet smell of my babies, the feeling of cuddling a warm, sleepy baby at 2 AM, the lump I get in my throat when they smile their great big smiles at me. So, in the end, I am determined to do everything I can to hold onto every memory, to create new ones with every moment we are together, to hold them closer, hug them tighter, and kiss their little angel faces until they can't take anymore.
They will always be my babies and I will always be their mommy, and even though I have to go back to work (and even more so because I have to go back to work), they will know now, more than ever, just how much I love them.