Monday, July 9, 2012

Oh Baby!

My sister had a baby four days ago, a perfect preemie girl.

She's tiny, barely six pounds, and she's not eating right, so she's stuck in the NICU, and not at home where her mom and dad and three big brothers so anxiously want her.

This tiny little girl is perfect though, and she is adored and adorable.

Yesterday, my baby turned one. This is him. Now, this litle boy isn't quite as small as his itty bitty fact the kid is a giant compared to her. He talks non-stop. Mostly he says da or la or ma, or clicks or blows raspberries. He smiles and giggles, and holds my heart inside his chubby little hand. This messy little non-crawler is perfect, and he is adored.

Writers often call their novel "their baby" and that term never really made sense to me. I was thinking about it today as I was stuck in traffic coming from my sister's empty house.

Whenever I talk to other moms, I often hear, or am asked, "Has your baby done (insert next development stage here) yet?"

I feel like that sometimes when I talk to other writers. Have you reached the end yet? How are those plot holes filling in? Any character development?

Now that sounds silly, so I don't actually say things like that, but I do think it. When I read other people's novels, I want to compare their book to my own, just to make sure my "baby" is developing the way that she should.

So often, I want my book to be perfect. So often, I only see the things in it that I need to change. And as an author I have the ability to change my baby.

As a mom...I don't have that power. My baby is who he is. He will crawl when he crawls. My sister's baby will come out of NICU when she's ready, and we can't change that. a way, books are so much easier than kids. We can change things we don't like, but with babies, they are who they are. All you can do is love them.

I'm constantly telling myself to slow down and just enjoy my sweet boy as he is, and stop trying to push him to crawl.  One day, I will look back at this day, and miss it. (Probably the day after he starts crawling.)

 I think the same thing will happen with my book. Right now, I think back to the day that the switch ending occurred to me. I remember the day that a specific turn of phrase came to me, and the night I had a certain dream that lead to a whole lot of computer time.

What I seem to always tell myself, and all you people through this blog, is to slow down and enjoy the journey. Well, this is one more thing I want to add to it oft spoken message. Your book, your baby, is perfect, just the way that it is. It might be too big, or maybe it's way too small. Maybe the pace should be faster than the slow crawl you have right now, and maybe the dialog should be further along than just babbling, but trust yourself. Time passes. Babies grow. One day, you'll look down at this perfect pile of papers, and you'll realize that your baby isn't a baby anymore.

One day your baby will be ready to go out into the world. One day, your baby won't be just yours anymore.

Why on earth are you rushing to that day?

One day... you're going to miss this day.



  1. Oh my gosh, I really love this post. I hope your tiny niece gets to come home soon! And seriously, don't sweat the crawling. I never thought my son would start talking, now he's five and I can't get him to stop!

    Thank you for the reminder to let our books (and children) grow up at their own pace.

  2. I was lucky enough to meet this little guy in person and I can testify that he's 100 percent pure adorableness. Big eyes, big smile. He seemed pretty perfect to me!

    Fingers crossed that your niece can come home soon.

  3. He's soooo cute! I hope, too, that your niece gets a happy homecoming soon.

  4. Beautiful post, and so true. Thanks for sharing.

    That baby boy is adorable. I know some babies that skipped the crawling stage all together. He may be one of those. :)

    Hope your little niece is doing well and can come home soon.

  5. Sometimes motherhood is overwhelming, the way you are always looking forward with one emotion and looking back with another and distracted from both by the constant demands of the present. It helps to know I'm not alone feeling that way. Your post was beautiful, and so true.

    The novel-as-baby thing never quite made sense to me, either, but your post sure does. Thanks, Sheena :)

  6. Oh how I love, love, love that kid. He may not crawl, but he sure can dance! And it won't be long until the two are making a mess together.
    p.s. stop making me cry ;)

    1. I love my sister! I'm so glad baby came home earlier than expected. I can't wait to squish her. :)

  7. This is awesome Sheena, and he is a cutey! I hope your niece is doing well now!


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