I have never felt love like this. It is definitely different than any other love I have known so far. Just as crisp fall air has begun to hint its way into our days, I am feeling gentle reminders each day of how deep this love will continue to go. Most of the relationships I have have built until now have been through interaction. The majority of that interaction formed through senses of sight, touch, smell. This new love also has senses of its own; Indra’s sweet baby smell, his beyond soft skin that I cuddle next to at night, the sound of sweet coos and giggles that evolve every morning.. And still it is built on something much deeper.
Then there is the experiential element. It is often easy to fall into love with people whom we share deep experiences with. The biological explosion that is birth would be enough to do that on its own. Retelling the story with Michael to others often brings laughs, tears and a tension in my body when I remember the most fierce moments. And pregnancy was an extremely transformative journey for me. The next level of self care and reflection I began to practice daily allowed me to love myself so much more. Those experiences provide a special aspect of our family’s bonding process. And it is still not the reason that I have this incredible attachment to Indra River.
Simply put, it is hard coded into me to love this little being and his existance. I tell people all the time that when your baby is born, it’s like a software simultaneously downloads to your brain. Women who say, ‘I don’t know how you do it’ are spot on. They just haven’t gotten the download yet. Instantly you know how to care for a baby. In such a natural and present way that it cannot be ignored. And this kind of compassion has allowed me to presence love in all areas of my life. I am love drunk. I can walk around and picture every one I see as a baby, then just smile and be with them. It is pure bliss.
And, of course, being the dynamic human that we all are, an extreme experience can also appear in the opposite direction. With great love comes the ability to experience great pain. The moment I sense a threat to my baby bliss (whether “reasonable” or not) just as naturally the Mama Bear wants to take over like an angry tiger. It is almost comical at times and more than that it is incredibly valuable. I am doing everything I can to fully embrace ALL of these instincts and not label any of them “good” or “bad”. As I do that, I feel my intuition stronger than ever an all of my experiences in flow.
In the practice of Yoga, we look at this energy within the Root Chakra. The base of the energetic body, at the tip of the spine, holds our connection to our family and sense of safety. Linked to our sympathetic and parasympathetic response systems, we find ourselves in flux between reaction and relaxation based on how safe we feel in our current environment. Our instincts tell us how and when to feel these two ways. 10 weeks into this journey, I can share my biggest peace of advice to new Mamas: Follow your instincts.
If you suppress your normal instincts, ignore them or try to change them, they will do what you are asking them to do: suppress. And being a new mother without strong instincts, well that would be a tough job. This applies to every area of life for me, by the way. If you have suppressed instincts in the past, don’t worry, we all do and there are ways to build it back. One of my favorite is to start asking myself simple yes or no questions and ignore the noise of thoughts after. Yesterday I messaged back and forth with a Mom-to-be about prenatal testing. When you really need answers, ask yourself a yes/no question. There is always space for “yes, but..” or “no, or..”. Focus on going with your first response and soon the chatter will quiet.
Love, love, love