Since LL arrived just six short months ago, I have had a real feeling of contentment. It's almost like she filled a hole that we didn't even know existed, or that she was a missing piece in the jigsaw. She's completed our family, and I am so proud of our two little ladies.
I sometimes feel sad that she is growing so quickly, already I cannot imagine her as a newborn or the baby who used to snuggle up on my chest, yet at the same time I love the age she is at now, and I know of all the exciting stages we have to come.
But there is something hanging over our happy little family.
'The Baby Things.'
LL has obviously grown out of her newborn clothes, and her 3-6 month clothes will soon be on the way out too. They currently are in plastic boxes under her cot. She has finished with her moses basket, and soon she will be finished with her crib too- ready to go in her big cot in her own room. The time is going so quickly, and our time with them as babies is so fleeting.
With Mads there was no doubt that we would keep these baby things, so as soon as she grew out of one set of clothes, they would all get put in bags up in the loft ready for a new baby. We knew that we wanted to give her a sibling and while I felt a little sad as I packed away the tiny items in place of slightly bigger ones, I knew that one day we would hopefully have another little person getting use out of them.
But LL growing out of her things is playing with my emotions more than I thought possible.
I thought we were finished having our babies. I thought our family was complete. But those tiny newborn outfits are completely pulling on my heart strings.
I always wanted two children. When I imagined our family, I could see us with two little girls, I don't know whether that was because I grew up with a sister. Two just seemed like a good number. One for each hand, one for each of us, not needing to upgrade our car, or our house straight away. A nice even number.
I want to be able to treat my girls, take them on foreign holidays, not have to watch the pennies in the future. I want to show them the world, and take them on nice days out, and help them fulfill their dreams. Don't get me wrong, I know you can do that with three, four or even more children, but two always just seemed like a good number for us and our family.
Yet I cannot get myself to get rid of those baby clothes. I can't bring myself to take the moses basket to the charity shop, or to bag up those tiny outfits. Our loft is full of stuff and we could do with a clear out but the thought of giving them away makes me sad.
It just seems so final.
One of my friends just recently had her second child and has already given away all of his bits- she knows completely and utterly that her family is complete.
Does this mean that I don't think ours is?
I feel so incredibly blessed to have my two little girls. As far as I can tell, they are happy and they are healthy. I have had easy straightforward pregnancies, and reasonably easy c-sections. I haven't had to deal with trying for a baby for a long time, or experience the pain of a miscarriage. I truly know how lucky that makes me.
I can't imagine not experiencing those exhausting, exhiliarating newborn days again yet I don't yearn for three children particularly, nor do I feel particularly broody at the moment, although I am sure I will as LL is still young. Yet giving away our baby things is almost like drawing a line under our baby days. Accepting that we are finished and moving forward as a family with our two little ladies. Accepting that we are lucky and blessed and that it is time for someone else to make use of our well loved items.
Accepting we don't need them anymore. And in my heart I deep down know we don't.
That we are complete as a family of four.
So why is that so hard to do?!