I counted twice on his little fingers to make sure I got that right. Yep, Mark is turning one today.
Close to 2,000 diapers later (and about as many bottles—input, output… like in economy!), baths, sleepless nights, exhausting days, baby milestones and other adventures, we somehow ended up with a one-year-old toddler.
It’s only when I look at the pictures I took during the first few months that I realize how tiny he was and how much he changed.
Baby Mark used to cry for food and lie down motionless on the changing pad, barely able to bring his own fingers to his mouth. Now, if Mark is hungry, he grabs food—anything, really. The most he can stay without moving is about two short seconds. And he puts anything in his mouth (and likes to put his pacifier in my mouth for some reason).
Baby Mark was a “velcro baby” and spent most of his first few months either in my arms or in the sling. Mark now is crawling all around and hides under tables and chairs. He stands, walks around with support, climbs, explores the world and gets annoyed if I get in the way of the amazing discoveries of power outlets, cleaning products or wires.
“Baking” a baby and raising a Canadian-Chinese-French boy is the toughest job I have ever had. I’m going to be honest: some days, I would have gladly handed in my resignation letter and walked out.
But then, you can’t really do that as a parent (or so I’ve been told). So instead I wrote about our misadventures and tough times on this blog, I drank countless cups of grande Starbucks coffee (seriously, they gave me a gold card with my name on it, that’s how much I go to Starbucks!) and I was lucky to be surrounded by amazing friends who listened to me and provided support (Melanie, Géraldine, Sabrina, Sophie many others… thank you for putting up with my French whining!).
I learned a lot this year too. I learned that you can’t do it all alone and that accepting help is the smart thing to do. It’s still hard for me to process because I like to think I can handle things all by myself even though I’m not Wonderwoman (she has bigger boobs than I do as well). But I’m working on it.
I also learned to bite the bullet and suck it up because suddenly, your needs become secondary. A little thing depends on you and you are responsible for it. You don’t come first but second, at least for a little while.
Having a kid is as fun and as rewarding as people say.