I'm back. And tired. And happy. And emotional.
My house is a mess. My kids are disheveled. I'm rocking the ponytail. And there's a burp cloth somewhere in every single room in this house.
The only way I can describe to someone what it's like to have a newborn is to say,
"It's the intersection of Heavenly and Hard."
She is perfect. Everything else is far from it. A three-year absence from doing this sort of thing has me playing my own sort of sleep deprived quiz show/guessing game almost 24 hours per day.
1. Your newborn hates her crib, and after a full feeding wakes up every time you lay her in it. What do you do?
A. Hope that after some time crying, she'll eventually fall asleep.
B. Don't be heartless. Go get her and rock her on your shoulder until she falls back asleep then lay her down again even though this option takes a half hour of your sleep time.
C. Pick her up, change her diaper, give her an extra burp and lay her down again in hopes that she'll quietly lay there until she sleeps.
D. Forget it. Sleep her in her car seat and worry about the crib thing later.
I tried A, B, and C. The only option that allowed me to sleep was D. Terrible, I know.
2. You've just picked up your daughter from school and your newborn falls asleep in her car seat. You come in the door and know that if you don't wake her now, she'll most likely be up more at night, but there's homework to do, your other kids are hungry, and you could REALLY use a nap. What do you do?
A. Let her sleep, put on a show, take a nap, and pay for it later. Let the homework go for a couple of hours.
B. Wake her up, and try to convince her to sit in her bouncy seat while you feed your children and attend to homework now (you never know what will happen later) even though she's likely to scream.
C. Let her sleep. Do a quick job of the homework. Feed the kids. Do the laundry (did I forget to mention the laundry in my scenario set up?), and pay for it later.
D. Just leave her in the car seat sleeping, take your nap, forget the homework, let the kids run wild.
I've done all of the above on different days.
3. Your kids need a bath now to ensure they'll get to bed in time to wake up for school; your newborn needs to be fed which needs to also be done now as indicated by her screams. What do you do?
A. Bathe the kids with one hand while feeding the newborn with the other hand and just hoping you won't drop her in the tub (but then if you did, she'd get her bath really, really quickly, so maybe this would work out for the best).
B. Let the newborn scream. It may drive you nuts, but she'll make it. After all, the world only "seems" to revolve around her right?
C. Forget baths altogether. One more day of scum never really hurt anyone.
D. Feed child #3, then bathe other kids, put them to bed late, and gripe a little about not bathing or feeding yourself for quite some time.
Sadly, I did D on this one.
Those are just a few samples of the many scenarios that accompany my life these days. And here's a final one:
You're trying to write your Pear Shaped Thoughts post for the week after a month long hiatus and your newborn is next to you crying about who knows what seeing as she's fed and changed and it doesn't appear that anyone is torturing her. What do you do?
A. Shut it down and end it NOW.