Over the last three and a half months I’ve read over 100 mother goose nursery rhymes, I’ve made up thousands of lyrics to the same sleepy tune, acted a fool in a myriad of ways, retold, sung and rhymed the history of western world in 30 minutes; I’ve lectured on the Hero’s Journey, more than once, to a mind chocked full of neurons, and have swayed, shushed, and hummed a countless number of calories away. Since Tori was born it has been a wonder-filled ride.
I’ve been meaning to write this post for several weeks now. Thoughts come to me in flashes, but I’m usually not near a computer or paper. When I’ve had time, or at least think I’ve had time, something has always come up: a diaper change, a wardrobe change, or some tender-care necessity to calm a crying child. But now the baby is a napping and the post needs be written.
When we began this journey in December, we had no idea what to expect. But one thing was certain: Love. Love times infinity, split and multiplied again and again. The connection--the emotion--felt for this tender child was more than we could have imagined. It’s not easy all the time, there are lows and there are highs, but that is just life. Without those lows, the high parts would lack meaning. Even when my wits and temper are pushed to their end, I can gaze upon my napping (or not) daughter and melt.
Our lives have drastically changed, of course, but the most amazing thing about human beings is our ability to adapt. I’ve been thinking back on my life with Chels these last eleven years or so (and my life, in general), and there have been so many times we’ve adapted. For example, in college, and when we first started living together, then when we went into the Peace Corps, then when we moved to Sacramento, and now we have a baby.
What is interesting to me is that the thought of that change is way more frightening than the actual change itself. Even on December 17th or the morning of the 18th if someone had asked me, “Are you ready to be a parent?” I would have still answered “No.” and my heart would’ve beaten a little faster. But, then, it happened. Now I am a parent and there is nothing that is going to change that. Our work and weekend patterns have adapted. We are able to adjust our and still do fun things.
These last few months have been an adventure in itself, juggling a baby makes things a bit more difficult, but we still have a way we want to live our lives. Our lives will never be what they once were, but we can still go out and do things we want to do. Just last week we met up with some of our best friends in San Francisco, we couldn’t spend the night up there with them as we once would have, but at least me made a whole day trip work and crammed all the fun things into a shorter time. The weekend before that, some old Peace Corps colleagues, Megan and Annie, were in town and we spent the day with them and another old RPCV friend Mark, doing what we normally would have done (enjoying the outdoors and microbrews), but with a baby in tow. Was it as simple as it once was? No. But was it possible? Absolutely. We’ve adapted. And are still constantly adapting
There are have been some significant strides with our young one. We have seen here mature from a blob of baby to an interactive person who smiles, giggles, and babbles with us. She doesn’t sleep as much during the day, but she is sleeping at night. We’ve started to adhere to a bed time (which is not set in stone yet) between 7:30 and 9:00 PM. Then she wakes up to nurse around 2AM, then maybe again at 4AM, and is ready to get out of bed by 7:30 or 8:00 AM. We’ve adapted.
The week before last was both of our spring breaks. I was able to be with Tori and Chels all week long. I saw the routine Chelsea has been living since I’ve been back at work. I was able start one myself. We’d wake up (I’d let Chels sleep in a little bit), I'd put her on her play mat; play with some rattles and toys, while I read Mother Goose to her. She’d get tired and eventually after an hour or so, she’d take a morning nap. Then wake up, be up a few hours (2-4) then nap some more, and before you know it the day is almost over and she is ready for bed. Baby time is so strange. I feel like my whole day simply revolves around her. It’s a time warp. But again, that is one of those things we’ve adapted too. Similarly, since baby time is so unusual, I think I’ve become much more efficient with the time I have for myself. Those bursts of napping peace need to be utilized to their full advantage. Hence, why this post had not been written for so long.
It’s been a wondrous few months and I can’t wait to continue posting. Next week, Chelsea has a big Moot Court competition she has been prepping for, and it will be the first time I’m left alone over night with the baby. I am excited and a bit scared, but I have no doubt I can accomplish it. It’s just another one of those adaptations.
|Just a week old. Such a blob baby.|
|One month old (before we started with the onsesie stickers)|
|Two months, bright and smiley gal.|