How am I ever going to give you over to this world?

You are sleeping in my arms right now. The wind is howling outside and dark clouds cast a menacing shadow over the day. But here your body is warm and snug against mine. These are the only moments when I am really content, with you right against my belly. I often wish I could fold you back into my body where I could keep you safe, forever.

You smell like love. Like warm milk and coconut oil and softness. You are so perfectly content, your eyes are still and calm, and only your mouth moves with soft suckles, twitching your dummy up and down.

How will I ever be able to give you over to this world? How will I let you run at full speed, inhaling alI the world can offer, without seeing every way you could tumble? How can I let you swing higher higher higher with reckless freedom, seeing how your face shines with joy but knowing how easily you could fall? How can I leave you to explore new friendships knowing the sting of that first betrayal? How will I allow your heart to open for your first love, knowing how that first break shatters it completely?

You are so perfect in this moment, so trusting. You believe completely that I will always be back at the end of the day. I will be there when you wake up. I will catch you. What if I fail you my little one? Will you only remember every mistake? Or will you fill your memories with all these times I held you in my arms? Because you see, I have already tumbled and fallen and had my heart broken, and the world has chipped away at me. I am not perfect anymore, not as perfect as you are right now.

A mother’s heart lives outside her body, from the first time the cry of her little one fills the room. And then every effort goes into drying each tear, paving the way, keeping you safe. But, my heart, the best things in this life come with risk. You might fall, friendships might fail, loves might leave you. But first your heart will soar, then break, and then grow. And while this world can be cruel, it can also be magical.

Please know that I wish I could always keep you here, close, tight against my belly. But that is not where you are meant to stay. And while I can’t prevent each scraped knee or heartache, I will be here when you need to return. I will always be your safety. Your haven.

Your mother.

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