My sister had her baby in the middle of May and I. am. in. love! My niece is only 6 weeks old and I think I have taken like 800 pictures and videos of her. I am clearly biased, but she is the sweetest, most beautiful baby ever. Luckily, my sister only lives 2 miles from me, so I have seen her almost every day since she was born.
My boyfriend has been very stressed out lately with work and has also been struggling with bad depression. I am so happy that he is very taken with the baby too and is a great uncle to her. Last week, after a particularly crazy work day for him, he saw the baby at night and was holding her and made a comment that he felt so much less stressed out just watching her sleep in his arms. It was such a sweet thing to say, but it made me think about the effect that having her around has had on all of us. I look at this little baby and I just want her to have the best life possible. I teach The Great Gatsby to my 11th graders and in one scene Daisy says about her young daughter, “I hope she’ll be a fool- that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.” I always thought this was a cruel wish for a mother to make, but now I sort of understand more what Daisy meant. I certainly want my niece to be very smart and very well-educated, but what Daisy really meant is that she wanted her daughter’s life to be EASY. I know things will not always be “easy” for my niece, that is unrealistic, but I want things to be better for her than they were for my sister and me growing up. We suffered through so much trauma and I want my niece to have a wonderful, happy childhood.
A super embarrassing thing about me is that I still suck my thumb. I am 38 years old. It is my one true vice and I have done it all my life. I saw my baby niece put her thumb in her mouth the other day and I was like, “noooooo!” I know babies do that when they are hungry or for self-soothing, but I don’t want her to have that- or any- bad habit.
It will be amazing to watch her grow and learn and see the person she becomes and I hope to be a very positive influence in her life. I don’t want her to be afraid of things the way I am. I want her to be confident and strong…and maybe someday be a teacher (lol!).