Our lives crossed paths over 20 years ago, and brought us, from Brazil to NYC, through a lot of experiences and with a lot of love, to this point in our lives. We are parents now. We waited for the right moment, and it just never came, so we decided to throw caution to the wind and open ourselves to the possibility of having a little person enter this relationship we had so tenderly shared together as a couple.
Little did we know how magically two plus one can equal one. The two of us seem to have truly found our singularity when we became 3, because we are now ONE family, with ONE main focus, ONE main responsibility, and ONE incredible life with our little girl.
The challenges have been many. Our choice to alternate our time with her so that we have a lot of family time has hit our finances pretty hard, many of our interests ( particularly mommy’s martial arts, Taiko drumming, Japanese and Tibetan language classes and endless activities) have been more neglected than they should have been, and we are both tired and at times stressed, but it’s all as it should be. We are learning from the challenges, working on the finances, attempting to focus back on some of the activities, now that she is old enough to be involved in some fun ways, and confident that we will eventually get a few good nights of sleep.
We also get to share our world and the people in it with this curious and sensitive little person who takes it all in with the eyes of someone who can see past what we think we want to show her. Who falls in love with songs and belts them all day even though she can’t pronounce most of the words, and who runs around the museum pointing at Roman-Greco statues of naked people and screaming ‘butt-butt”! We watch as she sends kisses to strangers who look at her with an honest smile, but who refuses to say hi to people we know if they seem like they are trying too hard to be polite when addressing her. She caresses our faces and gives us kisses, accidentally moons the parents in music class and runs on stage clapping during a dance performance. She also says “No” with the determination of someone who really doesn’t want the dish mommy just spent 45 minutes cooking and says “All Done” when mom and dad get too carried away while taking pictures of her and the Christmas Decorations at Macy’s.
Like most parents, we KNOW our baby is special, and we want to keep her that way. We are learning so much about who we are by watching ourselves through her gentle little eyes.
Our hardest mission is not to break her spirit; to set boundaries, but let her know it’s ok to say no; to give her a chance to thrive and have a voice, but help her also try to see the world through other people’s eyes; to give her space to learn on her own, but show her the value in perseverance and hard work; to let her enjoy life, but protect her always; and most of all, to let her become the amazing person she is bound to be.
We hope writing this blog helps us understand and always re-evaluate our choices, so we make good ones. We hope it helps us connect to other parents, so we can learn together, at times, cry together, and hopefully laugh together a lot.
Share your stories, comments and ideas with us. Our parenting adventure has just begun…