Any given evening will find me on the couch these days. I will probably be rubbing my newborn's tummy while expertly (or not) making sure his pacifier doesn't fall out at the same time. This seems to be the best way to reduce his colic and cries. My husband, hard worker that he is, may have fallen asleep in the Ikea pong chair after a long day of physical labor. Juliette, my vivacious and bouncy nine-year old, may be in fact bouncing on the couch next to me and insisting I hear her story about something that is on tv or happened at school. And there could even be a young cat in the mix, Miranda, who has brought her pet mouse next to me to play fetch.
Yes, this is the New Normal in Life A.B. After the aches and pains and me-centered world of pregnancy, here I am happily but sometimes reluctantly in the center of a household maelstrom. It is an adjustment I knew was coming but that sometimes I still can't believe I am really living. This little creature who resided in my tummy for nine months, whom I fondly referred to as my bowling ball, is here and demanding our, and especially my, attention. World, meet Alexandre.
For those of you who don't know, he came into the world not long after my last blog post, making his entrance with a little fanfare (emergency c-section, woo-hoo!). And he is staking his place in our family, rubbing shoulders with his effervescent big sis and making his cries heard over our daily routine. And if I had any doubt, there are those signs, some subtle, some blatant, that I am clearly in the post-birth world. New moms (of today and yesterday) may recognize the signs...
1. Getting moisturizer on is an accomplishment. If I leave the house with make-up, it's a real rarity. Contact lenses is even rarer. It's not just laziness (see blog name) but also the morning rush of nursing baby multiple times, squeezing in time for a shower and breakfast for me, and attending to those little cries.
2. Leaving home is like preparing for an expedition. Car seat, check. Baby in car seat, check. Car seat buckled in, check. Passenger side airbag disabled, check. Diaper bag, check. Stroller, check. I have to get used to building in all those extra minutes in my leaving routine.
3. A meal in peace is gold. I have to say I am lucky that my little one does nap a good bit. But there are times, towards the end of breakfast and especially dinner, where I must resort to holding him in one arm and my fork in the other hand. Or Remi holds him while I try to eat while not gulping too much air. When my mom was here, she was on rocking duty during meals. Thank you, colicky evenings.
4. The washing machine is doing over-time. In addition to the rest of the household's laundry, baby generates a surprising amount of stuff to watch. He may have small clothes but it just takes a leaky diaper to create literally five things to wash, the changing table towel, his onesie, his pj's, his sleeping sack, bedsheets! Sometimes, if I'm lucky, this routine happens more than once a day!
5. Sibling rivalry (already). Though overall Juliette has welcomed her brother with eager and open arms since she saw his little face, there are times her blue eyes turn a jealous shade of green. She says I am kissing him more than her. Or that I spend more time with him in general. I am afraid at this point in time it is true, but I try to explain to her that is just the way babies are. And that I did the same with her. We haven't quite found our balancing point yet, but I try to make sure I tend to her as best I can when I can.
Don't get me wrong. I am happy to be a mother of two, with all the hectic-ness that entails. I love hugging both my little ones and seeing them bonding. I know Life A.B. will hold more adventures as well as some times I will feel like I need a Calgon bubble bath to "take me away:" In the meantime, you can find me on the couch if you need me.