Ainsley and I have become a pretty good team as of late. We are finally getting into a groove that seems to be working for us both.
The mommy learning curve was not an easy one. Part of that was because we had just moved to a new area, along with the fact that my recovery took forever and finally, probably the biggest thing if I’m being honest: I was completely clueless as to how to interact with babies. Even my own.
So we muddled through for months and eventually I began to pick up on her cues and figure her out. Now when she looks at me with those gorgeous, big blue eyes, I melt.
I have discovered recently that our day-to-day routine must be about give-and-take or we both end up cranky and overtired by day’s end. What I mean is, there have been days that are all about her… we wake up and play, go to the park and play some more, come home and play again, only to finish our day splashing around at the pool. Is it fun? Certainly. Are we exhausted at the end of the day? Are we ever! And honestly it doesn’t do either of us any favors to run ourselves ragged in play time. We have approximately 60 hours together while daddy is at work so we don’t have to be on the move constantly. Similarly, there have been days that are all about me… where I haul my patient little lovebunny all across town running errands, shopping, going on walks etc., while she sits – in her carseat, in her stroller, not moving, not active. Also no good.
So I’ve found that we need a balance. We need focused baby time and focused mommy time and we need some solo time as well.
I am trying design a healthier schedule for us for the coming year. Since some of our weekly activities aren’t up-and-running yet, we are currently practicing… in the morning we have an Ainsley activity and a mommy activity and in the afternoon we have one of each. So today we had a gymboree class for Miss A scheduled so I took some of our free time to go on a walk and get some groceries. Right now, baby girl is sleeping and after she wakes up and has lunch we will both go swimming and run a few more errands. Again, one activity for her and one for me.
Now that Ainsley has started crawling, she is a girl on the move 24/7. She refuses to sit still unless forced via carseat or stroller strap. So this schedule has been helpful and wears us both out just the right amount. I also have a list of default activities I know she enjoys for the days when we have nothing on the calendar. She loves crawling around the children’s area of the library, we can do open gym once a week at Gymboree, we have two parks in walking distance, the pool is available until Labor Day etc.
It’s been helpful.
Being a full-time mommy is hard work. Much more than I ever imagined. Naively I thought I would be able to do my own thing while keeping an eye on Miss A in the periphery. I was so, so wrong. Thank goodness. Engaging with her brings me so much joy. We get to discover new things together and what fun life is, when you get to see the world through a child’s eyes.
My friend sent me this video the other day called “Mom’s First Birthday” and I wanted to hug the Japanese Pampers people after I watched it. I totally felt like they got me. And it made me bawl like a baby. It’s a must watch, especially if you’re a new mommy. Enjoy!