The Unwavering Bond: Sacrifice and Growth in the Mother-Child Relationship

When parents reflect on the first year of their baby’s life, they often express that it feels like a fleeting moment. The challenging episodes of fussiness, dirty diapers, and sleepless nights may appear never-ending in the midst of it all. Yet, amidst these trials, many parents discover that the precious moments—the snuggles, belly laughs, gummy smiles, and the child’s curious wonderment at the world—are exceptionally transient.

Amanda Oleander, an artist and new mom, skillfully captures the early months of parenthood through illustrations shared on her popular Instagram account. Welcoming their first child, Benny, in May 2021, Amanda and her husband Joey have found inspiration in their now 8-month-old son for her artistic creations.

“My whole world revolves around Benny and his needs, so my art has reflected that,” Amanda told HuffPost.

According to Amanda, the best part of parenthood is experiencing “the purest love.” However, she acknowledges that the most challenging aspect is the perpetual sense of being time-strapped, attempting to balance work, baby care, and everything else on her plate.

“I have so much to do, and it’s all jumbled in endless to-do lists. When they aren’t all accomplished, I feel bad, like I didn’t do enough,” Amanda wrote on Instagram. “Lately, I’ve been feeling like something is always off, and I guess something will always be on the to-do list. It’s never-ending, and I have to be okay with that.”

Amanda finds joy in reliving the excitement of life’s smallest things through the eyes of her son. She shared a delightful moment of reading books to Benny on Instagram, expressing the simple pleasures of parenthood.

Witnessing Benny’s rapid growth has brought conflicting emotions for Amanda. On one hand, she’s thrilled to see him develop into his unique self, while on the other, she mourns the swift passage of time.

To savor these fleeting moments, Amanda consciously immerses herself in experiences like midnight nursing sessions. She shared a poignant illustration on Instagram titled “Midnight Feed,” where she describes holding Benny longer during those quiet, dark nights, yearning to freeze time.

While adding a baby to a relationship can strain some couples, for Amanda and Joey, parenthood has forged a stronger bond.

“Joey and I are closer than ever now,” Amanda said. “Bringing Benny into this world was a very bonding and intense experience, and now parenting him has been a really special journey. We depend on each other much more since we don’t live near our parents or have a babysitter or nanny.”

In her artwork, Amanda Oleander masterfully captures the universal moments of new motherhood, creating a visual narrative that resonates with parents worldwide. To see more of Amanda’s illustrations, you can follow her on Instagram and Facebook or visit her website.

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