Everyone keeps telling us our kids will soon, in the blink of an eye, become young adults, and that before we realize it, we will be empty nesters. On the eve of our daughters’ eleventh birthday, I think back to those bleary days and months of their first year when we grasped anything and everything to give us hope we were doing this parenting thing right. Those early forays into parenthood were not dappled in glowing sunlight, but were heavily cloaked by the certainty we were doing everything wrong: the wrong diapers, the wrong bottles, the wrong sleep schedule. Looking back I’d say that a mother’s (and a father’s instinct) is not an innate thing, but a skill honed by repeated missteps, persistent insomnia and chronic self-doubt.
On the anniversary of their first year of life, we felt relief. All parties involved survived the first year, my dog-eared What to Expect: The First Year bible was tossed to the side, and we decided to wing it. Eleven years later, the twins are still thriving and we are still winging it.
Happy 11th birthday Maya & Sophie!