For Luka

 Mama loves her baby

Yeah, that’s right

Mama loves her baby 

With all her might

When he’s bad

And when he’s good

Mama loves her baby

Like only Mama could

I made up that silly song, in my head, and sang it to you, while we rocked, here in this big stuffed chair. So many nights and days, rocking here together, as we are now. I could never remember the lyrics to any other songs.  Or the songs for that matter.

We’ve “sprung forward” and the new light casts us in blue.  Every thing- all your toys, every pair of button eyes, every book and ball, and I, feel somehow more alive than we did at this time yesterday.

I can feel this all passing.

Since you were born, my little one, that’s exactly what you have been- my baby.  Tiny, then a little bigger, and a little bigger, but thus far, still a baby.  Still small, and holdable. Soft and pliable.  You still cling to me when I lift you, and fit like a key in a lock, on my hip, head on my shoulder.   Your feet remain the silken, doughy puffs that I’ve tickled, and kneaded, and kissed.  For now, we belong together.

This is all I know of you, and it feels like a complete knowledge.  But of course you will change.  I’ll know a braver you, an independent you.  You won’t always be held.  You’ll want your Daddy when you fall.  You’ll insist on doing it yourself.  There will be no more night visits.  The rocking chair will be still.

I’ll see you run, and then run faster.  Join teams and make friends.  You will defy me, and roll your eyes at me.  I’ll be, “so disappointed in you”.  I’ll say, “did you hear what I said?”.  You’ll stop being a boy altogether, and become a ‘young man’.  We won’t always understand each other then.  Maybe most of the time.  You will become studious, or athletic, or musical, and I’ll watch it all unfold, and probably try too hard to control it. To hold you back.  Hold you to me.

I will enjoy the milestones, I know I will.  I’ll celebrate them.  I’ll anticipate them happily. And then, one day, I’ll lose you in that cruel, cruel way, that only a mother loses her son. But, I’ll love her for loving you.  For wanting to make you happy and for taking care of you.  I’ll hold you a little tighter then, pull away a little more slowly…..but I’ll let you go.

Baby is tired

but he can’t sleep

Mama says his prayers

My soul to keep

He’s still blinking

Still squirming around

But he’ll drift away 

To Mama’s singing sound

I’m writing this for you, my boy, lest something take me from you, before I can tell you myself…. how perfect we were, how beautiful we were, rocking together in our chair, in our corner, in the dim blue light, when I was still the sun in your universe, and you the sun in mine.

Heather Bogolyubova

About Heather Bogolyubova

Heather Bogolyubova has an un-pronouncable last name. A Maine native, she's returned to the Pine Tree state after several years in New York. Now, she's a newlywed, has a new baby, a new job, and lots of fancy shoes she can never wear in the snow. The job: Stay-at- home mother and wife. Its hard. She's going to tell you all.