I feel like the Grinch. Not because our protruding bellies match or because I’ve stolen a lot of little kids’ Christmas presents. Nope. It’s because of his heart. Without fail, at the end of that cartoon a cute dog wears reindeer antlers, and the Grinch’s tiny heart grows to bursting. I wonder if the Grinch knew that his heart had the capacity to expand three whole sizes that day—because I sure didn’t know mine could. As I stare at the little baby boy in my arms (Don’t worry, he’s mine, not someone else’s.) I had no idea my heart could grow any bigger. But it has.
Just like people do, I spent hours waiting by the phone, my heart melting wondering if they would call. I felt my heart leap, trip, and get squashed by many-a-boy in a relationship. I loved all these boys (Don’t worry—not at the same time.). I loved my husband when we dated, and I loved him (a little more) when we got married. The good news is, I love him still. All of this is to say I have experienced love. Well, I have experienced one kind of love.
Now, my heart is different. There are days I feel like I might burst from loving this little baby boy too much. (Again to clarify—he’s my little baby boy not someone else’s.) It’s a lot like the feeling I get in my boobs when I forget to pump on time—but different. This love is overwhelming. This love is fierce. This love is unconditional. This little boy needs to do nothing for my love. He just has to exist.
While bouncing the little baby boy to sleep, (You know.) I study his face. I try to envision a face that’s twenty years older staring back at me. I can just make out a tiny laugh line or maybe a bit of unshaven stubble. Really, though, all I see is my little baby’s face, and it’s then I wonder if that’s what I will always see. Is this what parents mean when they say, “You will always be my baby…?” Will I forever see these soft, sweet eyes playing hide-and-seek behind a little kid face, a teenage face, a grown-man adult face?
Will he always be my baby?
Will I always love him this much?
My heart grew three sizes the day he was born.
Now, if you will excuse me, I should go take the antlers off my dog.