To Myself on the Last Day

by Rachael on June 9, 2015

Welcome to the June 2015 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Talking to Yourself

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month participants wrote letters to themselves. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

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Dear Rachael of September 16, 2008,

As I remember it, you woke in a panic at 4:00 this morning and were unable to go back to sleep. You were certain that your life as a writer was just about to end, even before it truly got started. If you had trouble making the time for your writing in all those years before you became a mother, how could you trust that you would do so with a child to take care of all hours of the day and night?

You might not be in labor yet, but trust me: your life as you know it is about to end. Your baby is going to be born tomorrow. So I wish you’d get some rest. And I wish you’d stop worrying, too, because your life as a writer is hardly over.

Let me tell you what things are like now, nearly seven years later. More often than not these days, I wake at 5:00 — on purpose, not in a panic. I might “snooze” once or twice (a bad habit I’d like to break); even so, I’m usually on the cushion doing zazen before dawn. Afterward, I make a cup of coffee and write for a bit. Often, I am interrupted by a child who wants help with the potty or getting a toy. Nevertheless, I do my best at the very least to finish the next draft of whatever poem I am working on.

It’s not much, but it’s just enough. With daily effort, the poems get written, however slowly.

Of course, I get greedy, wanting more time. Maybe I’ll start waking at 4:30. Maybe I’ll find a way to write another draft in the evenings. Or maybe (more likely) the boys will continue to grow, needing a bit less of my help in the mornings and giving me a bit more time to myself before breakfast year after year. I’m sure I’ll be glad then to have that time, but the truth is, I also like things just as they are right now.

Have your baby. Fall in love. And please don’t worry. You’ll find a new way to practice writing. Trust me. Trust yourself.

Love, Rachael of June 2015

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Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

  • Dear Me. — Meegs at A New Day writes to her decade-younger self offering a good reminder of how far she’s come, and she addresses some fears she wishes future her could assuage.
  • Reflecting on Motherhood with Parental Intelligence: A Letter to Myself — Laurie Hollman, Ph.D. at Parental Intelligence writes about raising her two loving, empathic sons with Parental Intelligence and finding they have become industrious, accomplished young men with warm social relationships.
  • A Letter to MyselfThe Barefoot Mama writes to herself in the moments around the birth of her daughter.
  • A Letter to Myself — Holly at Leaves of Lavender offers a missive to herself in the past… three years in the past, to be precise, when her little one was only four months old.
  • Dear me: Nothing will go the way you’ve planned — Lauren at Hobo Mama gets real with her just-starting-parenting self and tells it to her straight.
  • A Letter to the Mama Whom I Will Become — Erin from And Now, for Something Completely Different writes a letter to the Mama whom she will one day be, filled with musings on the past, present, and future.
  • Dear Me of 7 Years Ago — Lactating Girl at The Adventures of Lactating Girl writes to her pre-baby self telling her about the whirlwind she’s about to enter called parenting.
  • Talking to My 18 Year Old SelfHannahandHorn talks to herself as she is just entering college.
  • Dear highly sensitive soulMarija Smits tells a younger version of herself that motherhood will bring unexpected benefits — one of them being the realization that she is a highly sensitive person.
  • Talking to myself: Dear Pre StoneageparentStoneageparent enlightens her pre-pregnant self about the amazing transformations life has in store for her after having two children
  • Dear Me: I love you. — Dionna at Code Name: Mama wrote herself a few little reminders to help her be at peace with who she is in the moment. That may give her the greatest chance of being at peace in the future, too.
  • My best advice to the new mama I was 8 years ago — Tat at Mum in Search shares the one thing she wishes she’d figured out earlier in a letter to her 8-years-ago self (that’s when her first baby was 6 moths old).
  • A Letter to Myself — Bibi at The Conscious Doer sends a letter back in time eight years to her darkest moment postpartum.
  • To me, with love — Jessica at Crunchy-Chewy Mama makes peace with her past and projects what a future her will need to hear.
  • To Myself on the Last Day — Rachael at The Variegated Life tells her panicked last-day-before-motherhood self not to worry.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Tat June 9, 2015 at 8:34 AM

It is so inspiring to see your determination to love both your baby and your dream! Glad you’ve found a way to make it work for you.
Tat recently posted… My best advice to the new mama I was 8 years ago

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Stoneageparent June 9, 2015 at 9:14 AM

Thanks for sharing this. A good idea to awake early to write, and to accept that your children need you now a lot but in time this will change so you’ll find more time to write. It is good to remind myself that my children are so young and need me a lot right now, but this too shall change as they grow up and then I’ll be wishing they were young again and wondering where all the time went. Stoneageparent

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Melissa June 9, 2015 at 10:08 AM

Ah – what a beautiful letter, filled with advice and perspective that only a mother can give.

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Meegs June 9, 2015 at 10:16 AM

Parenting can be so all consuming at first, but it is so true that we manage to find our balance again. We don’t lose what we love or who we are, but gain this new amazing side to ourselves!

Great post.
Meegs recently posted… Dear Me. {Carnival of Natural Parenting}

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Dionna @ Code Name: Mama June 9, 2015 at 1:17 PM

Ah, I need this reminder every so often – maybe you should just print this off and post it on a mirror 🙂 Right now there is a heart on my mirror that says simply, “Breathe.” Which, I think, is a shorter verison of your letter. Thank you for sharing <3

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Lauren @ Hobo Mama June 9, 2015 at 4:14 PM

Yes! This is true. This is something I panicked over pre-baby as well, because I hadn’t gotten all my writing in before he was born (ha!). I found once I had children: You just do it. You just find the time to write, and you do it. It’s not easy, and it’s not perfect, and it’s not uninterrupted, but you make it work. I’m so glad to hear you’re finding your space!

Thank you for sharing!
Lauren @ Hobo Mama recently posted… Dear me: Nothing will go the way you’ve planned

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Bibi June 9, 2015 at 10:52 PM

A lovely post. I’m so glad that we don’t have to give up on everything that’s “ours” when we become mothers. But, you’re right, it sure does look different.
Bibi recently posted… A Letter to Myself

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Jessica Claire Haney June 11, 2015 at 11:18 AM

This is lovely! I wish I could honestly tell myself the same thing about having such a nice sitting and writing routine! Good for you!
Jessica Claire Haney recently posted… To me, with love

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Holly S June 16, 2015 at 11:01 PM

Love this! Yes, life does change completely, but with time and effort, we eventually find a way to fit back in the things we love. Thanks for sharing!
Holly S recently posted… Review: Fat Free With Me Seasoning Blends

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