For someone who loathes routine, getting Ike on a schedule has become my white whale. Every day I chart his feeding, sleeping, and play schedule, imagining myself getting hours closer to predictable days and a sense of control over the the unpredictable entity that is a newborn. But then reality strikes and instead of getting Ike up to feed him on schedule I find myself creeping around the bedroom like a burglar, trying to steal a few precious minutes here and there before he sounds his siren call for his morning feeding. I’m not going to say if today is going well or if the numerous other times I tried to put him on a schedule were successful. Maybe what Ike is trying to teach me is to let go, which is a hard-fought lesson for anyone trying to mentor me. I commend your efforts, Ikesteroo.
I still have much to learn, but I’m feeling more comfortable with the thought of taking care of two kids. Note that I’m not actually saying that I’m competent enough to actually take care of two kids, but the thought of it doesn’t immediately drive me to tears. That’s progress, right? Starting tomorrow and until the end of the month Connor and Ike will be in my sole care during the work week. I see a lot of Cars, Cars 2, Paw Patrol, and Chuggington in my future. Other than that I also see a lot of diaper changes, harried pumping sessions, and disrupted naps in my future. I’ve never climbed a mountain or hiked the Appalachian Trail, but I’m pretty sure that moms are formed from some of of the toughest stuff around. Maybe some day I’ll be made of that stuff, too.
Right now, I’m made of soft, doughy flesh that has resisted all of my efforts to be mentally willed into discernible abs or not love handles. I haven’t tried to get myself into a routine that has any self-serving purpose. The biggest effort I’ve made towards getting back in shape is to drink and ultimately pour down the drain a bottle of kale/spinach/cucumber juice (honestly, how did that stuff ever make it to the grocery store shelf?!). My linea negra is just as dark as it was during pregnancy as are the spots under my arms. I am still sporting my maternity jeans along with whichever nursing bra smells less like stale breast milk. I make an effort to put on makeup and change out of my pjs every day so I don’t feel like a gigantic slouch, but my afternoon hours have become less and less productive. I feel mildly guilty about not scrubbing down the countertops and folding all the stray clothes, but there will be plenty of time for all of that fun stuff. What I enjoy the most about my days are these moments, when Ike is sleeping soundly on the couch while I try to form complete thoughts and make sense of life today. At this moment I’m not afraid of Ike waking up because I can take care of him. I’m not anxious about what to make for dinner or if I’ll have enough time to cook. In this moment I am still.