Moments of Happiness in July 2015

Feeling, for the first time, the weight of my firstborn lying on me.

Clutching him tight to my chest, for fear he would slip away and leave me... or someone would take him away because it was all too good to be true.

Stroking his slippery skin and finding a triangular jut of bone sticking out of his back. It took me the longest time to realise this was his shoulder blade. Such a perfect little shoulder blade.

Turning to my partner, NewMan, as I repeated the words "He's here! He's here!" through gasps of laughter.

Watching NewMan's reaction unfold into a broad smile and misty eyes.

Enjoying the relief of my work being done. I'd brought him safely into the world. The pain, the pushing, the exhausting persistence could all disappear. 

Hearing NewMan tell me how proud he was of me and feeling his pride in what I'd just done come almost as close as the pride I had for myself... almost.

Realising after many minutes of holding my boy, I still hadn't seen his face and the desire to do so was unbearably urgent. 

Tilting him to the side so I could look into his eyes. After spending nearly a year - or maybe my whole life - wondering what he would look like it was the sweetest surprise to see he looked nothing like what I imagined, and yet exactly how I expected.

Putting him to my breast and as my tired, blurry brain tried to remember everything I'd been told about how to breastfeed, my baby knew exactly what to do and begin to pout out little sucks around my nipple.

Watching his dad hold him for the first time, like he was the most precious and delicate of beings. 

Learning that he likes to have his feet stroked, something we still do every day.

Recognising above all the other aches and pains my body was feeling, that my cheeks were beginning to get sore from smiling non-stop for the four hours that followed Baby Bird's birth as we waited to be discharged and take our son home.

Getting into bed to eat re-heated leftover lasagne at 2.30am and after each mouthful our eyes would travel over to the moses basket where our little boy slept.

Lying Baby Bird down between NewMan and I the morning after he was born, so he would feel safe and we would feel like the last 24 hours hadn't been a crazy, spectacular dream.

These are just some of the moments that made me happy on 26th of July 2015 when my son was born.

Frances M. Thompson

Londoner turned wanderer, Frankie is an author, freelance writer and blogger. Currently based in Amsterdam, Frankie was nomadic for two years before starting a family with her Australian partner. Frankie is the author of three short story collections, and is a freelance writer for travel and creative brands. In 2017, she launched WriteNOW Cards, affirmation cards for writers that help build a productive and positive writing practice. When not writing contemporary fiction, Frankie shops for vintage clothes, dances to 70s disco music and chases her two young sons around Amsterdam.
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