Thursday, October 29, 2009

Catching Up to the Day

Since my parents left about ten days ago, today is the first day I've felt somewhat in control of my day. Instead of the day whipping me around by my ass, I actually felt one step ahead of it. By 4pm, I had already worked out, finished all of the laundry, had all bottles cleaned and sterilized, had vacuumed, had eaten both breakfast and lunch, and had even remembered to drink lots of fluids to help with the lactation and eat lots of fruit to help with a certain other problem. Compare that to Tuesday, when I felt like having a little breakdown for failing to keep myself well hydrated and barely having a chance to finish half a sandwich for lunch while foregoing dinner altogether because I was so tired.

It's a challenge to try to fit in all of the chores while the baby is asleep, and god forbid he awakes before I had finished going through all of the tasks on my list -- which has been the rule, not the exception. The one privilege I started allowing myself is a workout at the gym. I jump in the car and speed up and down the hills of Noe Street like a madwoman to get to the gym to fit in my 30-40 minute workout while Jeff hangs out with the baby.

It is only because Jeff has been a partner in the true sense of the word in taking care of our little Baby T that things have been as manageable as they have been. We've broken up the nights into two shifts, and I have not been sleep deprived since we started that schedule. When I fretted about failing to take good care of myself and negatively impacting my lactation, he ran out and picked up a bunch of groceries for us -- and cooked a healthy dinner for us last night. I don't know how single mothers do it -- they have my deepest respect.

So it should not be a surprise that my blogging has suffered a bit in the past several weeks. I can sit and write for an hour -- or hold my baby in that time -- or sleep. We have grand plans to make life easier for ourselves -- like hiring someone to clean our house. But it will only happen when we have time to look for someone. With each day, however, our new life seems easier. And one of these days, I will be able to post entries with coherent thoughts once again. Until then, dear readers, I beg for your patience...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Two and Half Weeks Later...

It has been about two and a half weeks since our baby's birth, and the world I live in now is very different than the one I inhabited before he showed up. I feel like I'm on the other side. As if I've climbed Mount Everest and can see a vista I didn't even know existed -- and can appreciate a human experience that I only poorly imagined before. I think I would sound trite if I tried to describe all of the changes I have gone through, but I'm sure anyone who has been through this can relate. My relationship to my body, to my sense of self, to my family and others... nothing is the same.

But despite that, having our little guy feels so completely natural. It feels like he has been with us forever. He feels so right when I hold him in my arms. And when I press my nose against his skin, he smells exactly as he should, and I can't get enough of him. When I look at him, I fill with an aching feeling -- a determination that I should -- that I have to -- do right by him. Please let me not fail him.

There are so many moments in the past two and a half weeks that I want to preserve. Like the second when they pulled his writhing grey body out and laid him on my chest -- and how I cried when I saw him. And how he has grown so miraculously fast that he seems like a different person already, and it hasn't even been three weeks. And how much it warms my heart to see Jeff hold our baby and talk to him with the most engaging of conversations, even as he changes the fifth consecutive diaper in less than an hour -- he who always declined to hold other people's babies. And the tireless effort of my mother to mother me after the delivery -- and to see her hold our little baby and to know that she must have held me the same way 38 years ago. And to see my father kiss our child, even though I had never seen him kiss anyone as long as I've known him.

I am filled with emotions, and I can't seem to contain them. Life seems so tender, as if it would bruise so easily. But it is also very soft, and it is in this softness that I have been living in the past two and half weeks. Let us stay here a while...

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Our Baby

Here's our baby at 5 days old. (I'll just call him Baby T on the blog so that I don't give away his privacy before he's ready to.)

The last 5 days have been wonderful and tiring and wonderful. I can't seem to stop staring at the little guy. And holding him. I'll write more when I've had more sleep, but I just wanted to post a little update and thank all of you for your happy wishes.