Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Last Baby

The last baby is special in a way that the first baby is not.

The first baby is full of firsts. This first baby is full of surprise and wonder. The last baby, however, makes your heart ache because you know she is the last you'll hold in this way. She's the last baby you'll nestle in your arms in the middle of the night, with only her glossy eyes watching you — as if you are the moon and forever.

Her cheeks are so plump and full that when you kiss them, you think they might pop. Her smiles and laughs are the last of your babies' smiles and laughs. With your first baby you wondered how you would get through the sleepless nights and the around-the-clock feedings.

With the last, you wonder how you'll live without them. How will you live without these quiet midnights with a baby softly sucking, a small hand curling around your finger, and a sweet sighing with the kind of contentment that only stars and small deities can know.

The last baby is the last baby. And for that, she kind of breaks my heart.