Believe it or not my little baby turned 1 today! It seems like the past year has gone by in the blink of an eye. I’m a little sad at how big my baby is getting, but honestly I look back on the past year, and I just feel relieved that I made it.
When my husband and I talked about having a baby in medical school, we knew it was going to be hard. We waited until I was done with anatomy to try and get pregnant, and we wanted to wait until I would be starting my clinical rotations. We knew it wasn’t going to be easy, but we felt adequately prepared after three years of marriage to be parents.
Then along came Anika. The cutest, fussiest little baby in the whole wide world. Needless to say it’s been a really difficult year. I didn’t expect to have a baby with colic. I didn’t expect to struggle with postpartum depression. And we really underestimated how much work goes into being new parents. This past year was the hardest year I’ve experienced in my whole life.
The first few months with Anika are a sleepy, hazy memory now, but I won’t soon forget the many nights I spent trying to calm a crying baby with tears running down my face. Why wouldn’t she stop? Did I really have to get up at 5 am to go to the hospital to round on patients? I probably would’ve given my left arm for 3 hours of uninterrupted sleep.
I think the best thing that ever happened to me was the night Anika finally slept through the night (Aka 5 hours…still waiting for that night when she doesn’t wake up at all). I was so excited I couldn’t even sleep. I had to keep checking on her to make sure she wasn’t dead, and then I laid in bed waiting for her to get up!
And I would be lying if I said there weren’t moments when I thought we’d made a mistake. Maybe we weren’t ready. Maybe having a baby during med school was a bad idea. But every morning when my little alarm clock wakes me up, I see those chubby cheeks and that happy little smile, and I am so thankful that we did.
I survived. I don’t know how. But I did. And although it’s Anika’s day today, I can’t help but feel like today is my special day, too.
She gets cuter every day. And I hate how fast she’s growing. But seriously, I’m so glad this year is over.
Happy birthday, baby girl.