Bittersweet is exactly the word. I feel so elated that my sweet baby girl is turning one, yet at the same time I feel so very sad. I have such conflicting emotions.
I love the joy and happiness that she has brought into our lives for the last year. She is the most amazing, smart, sweet, fun, wonderful little girl. She lights up the room with one little look. She is beyond hilarious and keeps us laughing everyday. I've been able to experience the world in a whole new way through her eyes. She has taught me more about myself in this last year than I ever could have imagined. I have learned that I am stronger than I ever knew, capable, and a good mother. She has strengthened our marriage because there is nothing greater than seeing your husband as a father- you will love them immensely more, even though you thought it wasn't possible to love them more.
At the same time, I feel so sad I could cry. My baby won't always be a baby forever. She will always be MY baby, but not that sweet little baby who wanted to be in my arms every second of every day and night. The baby who wanted no one but me (which was exhausting and draining at times). The baby we called "boogie barnacle", "velcro baby", and "Wifi Signal" (my husband came up with that last one- every time I tried to leave the room, she would start to freak out and my husband would say that the she was losing signal because I was out of range haha). She won't always have that sweet baby smell to her head or want me to nurse and rock her to sleep. This baby will not always breastfeed. It's such a huge part of lives and I can't imagine life without it because it's our norm, it's all we know.
I can say one thing though, I have very few regrets from my first year of motherhood. I truly feel like I have been a good mother to her. I know I've always met her needs and she has always felt loved and safe. I will not look back and wish that I held her more or spent more time with her. I always held her for those extra minutes after she fell asleep just drinking in the moment.
I'm sure I'll shed some tears on her first birthday but mostly I will be happy because life with her is infinitely better.