Friday, August 14, 2015

37

Good God, where does the time go? Someone told me about parenthood, "the days are long but the years are short." Holy mango lassi, Batman, is that true. Time is just blowing by SO DAMN FAST.

Some days I'm so overwhelmed by all that I should be doing better that I don't have time to enjoy beautiful little things, like my nine-month-old (!) looking at me and saying "Hey, baby." It's true, "baby" was her first word. "Hey" followed soon after. Then "ball" and "go" and today she started saying "oh boy." She is also crawling like a maniac and pulling herself up on furniture and feeding herself with only 30 percent of dinner falling on the floor. Progress.

Ro cries for us at 1 a.m. on the dot every single night. And she has since she turned four months old (she slept through the night from newborn until four months). As somebody who cherishes morning sleep more than your average night owl, saying I don't mind waking up with her earlier than 7 a.m. is truly saying something. Jon and I actually compete to be there when she opens her eyes, because morning smiles are worth whatever metal is more precious than platinum.

***

It's tough to work full time and feel like a good mom. GUILT. However, no matter how you slice the money, we would be homeless if one of us didn't work. GUILT. The daycare lady who watches her is amazing, and my mom picks her up at 2 p.m. every day so she has grandparents time before Jon and I come home. That makes me feel a little better, but also makes it easier for me to get stuck at work later.

Jon and I work at the same place now. He gave me a birthday card designed for a coworker. I liked it better than a treacly one designed for a wife.

I usually don't talk about work, but I can't talk about life right now without mentioning that my truly horrible, miserable moments have all revolved around fear and self-doubt surrounding work (not to say there haven't been some rough mommy moments, too; these are just worse). It's a career that does not come easily to me--I've mentioned before that it's like being in a neverending calculus class, and I purposely majored in something for which statistics was the only math requirement. That said, I like the job. I just wish I were doing something my brain was designed for (I had been, until that industry went kaput, and I had a mortgage to pay).

When I was on maternity leave, they hired someone to the team who rocks the job as if she were born to do it. Two weeks after I got back they said we were both up for the same promotion; me having been there for three years and she having been there for three months. I'm not going to lie: That stung a little. Then they said they could only promote one of us. So the pressure is tremendous to step up my game while taking breaks to pump, getting very little sleep and refusing to work 75 hours a week anymore. On top of it all, someone else quit and we're all in over our heads with workload. I do think I would be better suited for a leadership role than what I'm currently doing, but I'm not sure what they're looking for me to do to get there. Besides, it was very clear while I was gone that I am perfectly replaceable. This whole thing has been stressful, but helped me to see that you can love a job, but it won't love you back. A family, however, will love you back in spades. But you do need money to give your family all that they deserve...

***
I spend my time worrying about all this crap, and then I come home and watch my kid splash in the bath, try to say "ducky" after I say "ducky" and come crawling up and pull my pant leg as I am doing the dishes. And when I look into her eyes I see that I am necessary and useful. There is a good chance that even though I spent a lot of it paranoid and overwhelmed, I will look back upon this year as the best I've ever had.




Sunday, April 19, 2015

well, heck

I have never in my life so badly blown NaBloPoMo. I am so sorry.

Looking at my posts, there is a LOT of whining. Again, sorry.

Truly, this is one of the best (if not THE best) periods of my life, but you would never know it because of all the whining.

But this has also been one of the worst periods of my life because I don't know what the heck I am doing, or how to manage it and I feel like I'm always disappointing someone, if not everyone. It's hella hard not to care about that. I don't know how mommy bloggers have time to post. Because I barely have time to wash my hair. And sometimes I worry that I'll leave without rinsing.

It seems unfair that the lovely fleeting moments of early parenthood can be so thoroughly tainted by a constant hovering of a nervous breakdown.

Inevitably, I will look back on this time and hate myself for caring so much that the ironing didn't get done or that I could no longer keep up with coworkers who put in 70 hours a week.

Thank goodness we have cameras.

She makes everything I have to whine about seem not so bad. 



Friday, April 10, 2015

bet your bottom dollar

#8: Finish your story, let go even if it's not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.

Today was the first day I didn't have enough milk for the baby. Learning to nurse was really painful and challenging for Ro and I, so I feel like I owe it to us both to see it through as long as we can possibly manage. And as hard as that was, accommodating times to pump during work has been even tougher in a place where no one on my team regularly breaks for lunch.

Yes, I realize how lucky I am even to get a drop out for my child. I am so very grateful for what I have. We all do the best that we can. Tomorrow is another day. We will try again.

Thursday, April 09, 2015

no regrets

#7: Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard, get yours working up front.

What's that people say about how no one on his deathbed wishes he'd worked more? I'm having a very hard time getting my bearings back at work and still manage everything that needs to be done at home without dropping a ball or two. It's an impossible goal. There are only 24 hours in a day, and now more than ever, I need at least five of them for sleeping. So at any time of the day I feel like I am letting someone down.

And yet, my story finishes with me finding myself at the end of life with no regrets. Maybe I need to revise.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

what i suck at is efficient balancing

#6: What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them. Challenge them. How do they deal?



Ha. This is perfect.

I have always wanted to be a mom. I clearly remember thinking to myself in junior high: Self, it doesn't matter what you do for a career--you can't die without raising a baby. I'm genetically inclined toward the snuggling, the loving, the encouraging and the supporting that moms do. What I am not naturally equipped for is all the other required stuff that is often not advertised: The juggling, the organizing, the planning, the foreseeing the future, the preparedness. The TIME MANAGEMENT.

So the last five months have been exactly what Pixar Rule #6 is all about for me. Not being able to sit, stand, lie down flat or on my side, bend, kneel, shower without assistance, let alone walk without a walker for eight weeks was quite a curve ball. On top of having delivered a small human for whom we had to do everything but breathe. I'm dealing. I completed home physical therapy and managed to move again without equipment (though it felt like the hobbling was going to be permanent), but I would be dead on the bathroom floor without my A Team: Jon and my mother.

And just when I got a semblance of an idea about what needs to be done and how, I went back to work. That is another post, but let's say going back to working full time three months post baby to a job where you used to put in 50-80 hours a week has been challenging, indeed. I would be dead on the street without the A Team.

So the house isn't as picked up. Exactly zero personal projects get done, including decorating the baby's room and organizing her clothes before she's gotten too big for some of them. I get my news from Facebook now. And there is certainly no time for television. But we are getting by. Again, shout out to the A Team.

I try to keep in mind this paraphrased advice I got from a very wise lady ("The Wife" to whom Omar is "Mr. Wife"): As long as you have the same number of people at the end of the day as you had at the beginning, you're doing all right.
 


Tuesday, April 07, 2015

everybody needs an editor


It seems like in every line of work, when you get so invested in something you've created, it's hard to see the parts that could be bogging you down. No matter how perfect I think something is, if I come back to it later, it can always be improved--mostly by trimming it.

I am trying very hard to keep my work emails to three sentences or fewer. It's hard.

Monday, April 06, 2015

in a nutshell




Once upon a time there was a very bored twentysomething. Every day, she worked the evening shift and was awake when her friends and family were either at work or sleeping, so she watched one Netflix movie a day (before there was streaming), read books and knit, but she was lonely. One day, she discovered a web log with good writing, started her own and bumped into some random, cool people. Because of that, she became very close to a few of the bloggers, especially Jon. Because of that, they started emailing every single day, then talked on the phone for hours and hours. Until finally they decided they needed to meet: Three years later, he moved across the country to be with her; three years after that, they got married; and three years after that, they had a wonderful baby.