Having a child has made me realize that there are many things that become plentiful or abundant in your household as that child grows and matures, and there is one thing that seems to dissipate in the atmosphere forgotten by most and that is “mommy time”. Over these past 10 ½ months I have noticed an increase in many things that are wonderful and positive such as hugs, laughter, kisses and cuddling-although I have been told by my veteran parental colleagues that these things exponentially decline as the child enters the teenage years. Nevertheless, these are things that have been added to my life with a young child that are always pleasurable and make it all seem worthwhile.
However, I have also noticed an increase in tangible items. These items can quickly make our 1400 sq ft house seem small and cluttered. I can only imagine the magnification of this effect once Christian comes along. For example, boxes of diapers and formula have become regular staples in our household, along with pacifiers and bottles galore. My goodness, I never knew there were so many different varieties of pacifiers and how easily those little boogers disappear, especially around 3 am when you have a crying baby and you really need one. And last but not least, we cannot forget the never-ending supply of baby toys. Baby puzzles, baby books, music playing toys, toys that light up, wind up, roll and sing are all permanent fixtures in our home now. All these things attribute exponentially to the decrease in “mommy time”. One reason is because you find yourself spending so much time moving, arranging, tidying and putting these items away.
I am sometimes capable of stealing a few minutes of time for myself during naptime (if I haven’t fallen asleep also, often my son seems to put me to bed at naptime). There are also those precious 10-30 minutes in the morning when you wake up before everyone else when one might be able to relax and have individual time. Unfortunately, I often have to make a conscious choice of what to do with those precious moments and usually washing dishes, taking a hot shower, starting breakfast or doing laundry devours those precious minutes leaving you with that same void again. It truly never fails, if you believe that you are going to be able to wash the dishes, throw in a quick load of laundry and then settle down for a few moments to read your favorite book, you better think again. That last item will surely drop from the list, either being replaced by another chore, a request by your spouse (we often forget about these things) or it will be completely eliminated by a crying, waking baby who wants his mommy.
I have even tried savoring those 1-2 hours in the evening after my son is in bed. With great hopes I take a shower, straighten up the kitchen, pull my clothes out for the morning, prepare lunches for the next day and then settle down for my “mommy time”. You can see where I am going with this one can’t you? It always brings me to the verge of tears because once I grab my favorite magazine or book or lie down to watch a good movie, exhaustion and fatigue hit me like a Mack truck and I end up falling asleep. It just doesn’t seem fair.
Well, I have recently accepted defeat and decided to make use of that small interval of time that seems to be no one else’s but mine. Like clockwork, around 2-3 in the morning, I must make a trip to the restroom (this has a lot to do with being almost 30 weeks pregnant, but it isn’t a requirement if you would like to follow my lead). After taking care of business, I have noticed the beautiful silence at this time in the morning and have recently decided to make use of that silence. I use it as “mommy time” which could be filled with something as simple as sitting and eating a bowl of raisin brain (without someone crying for a bite), or just reading a PEOPLE magazine and completing an entire article uninterrupted. I’ve decided that beggars can’t be choosers and for now some mommy time is better than none so 3am it is!!!!!