Emily is asleep in her cradle.
Yep! I love saying that.
I have approximately twenty-seven minutes to myself. So here’s to a cup of tea, some I’m not happy with it but it’s all we’ve got orange and cinnamon short bread courtesy of café meg, and who knows what I’ll say style rant.
Parenthood raises more questions than it answers.
At least that is how Michael and I are feeling this week.
Why is she crying?
Does she need a nappy?
Do I have enough milk?
Who or what is she talking to?
What other games can we play with her?
Does she need a sleep?
Should we start her on solids?
What about formula?
My point is the questions never end. This week, we have the answers to none of them.
Thank God for chocolate ice cream, otherwise we might be in real trouble.
Basically, it comes down to this; we have no idea what we are doing.
We hope we are doing the right thing, but who knows.
She looks healthy enough, sounds happy enough, except for when she is being grumpy of course.
Our grumbly bumblebee can be difficult to console at times.
However, I am wondering if that is because we have not been following her sleep cues as precisely as she would like.
Little is not a day sleeper kind of girl. Apparently, there are simply too many things to do and see. I mean, what if Daddy does something without her.
As it is, we try and save the handling of washing, the dishwasher, taking the rubbish to the bins outside, picking the rosemary, morning coffee, and various other little rituals for when she is available. And by available we mean not feeding.
At the moment, Emily never stops feeding. Five minutes on, fifteen minutes off. Five minutes on, five minutes off. Ten minutes on, and hour off… No wonder I do not get any work done.
This morning I rang the Australian Breast Feeding Association national help line for some advice; because I was concerned, my body was betraying us both, and not providing the nourishment she requires.
However after a lengthy conversation with the lovely Kelly, I am feeling much more assured about the state of affairs.
Emily is a cat napper, and baby snacker. Which rather makes sense, because I would prefer to graze throughout the day, and am happy to take a quick kip where I can, while Michael is a man who likes his sleep in a lump sum, and prefers solid meals three times a day… And by three times I mean I have to twist his arm for breakfast, nag him to have lunch, and look the other way when he hits the bickies and cheese half an hour before dinner.
I have no idea how we are going to teach Little good eating habits when example is better than advice.
He is convinced she will not notice what he is doing. However, as we all know, when it comes to Miss Emily and her daddy, she notices everything.
It is almost to the point where I cannot put her to bed of an evening, because that is Daddy’s job.
I have not even attempted to give her a bath, so who knows what that will be like when I eventually get the opportunity.
It is hard to let Michael do things, because I feel like I am missing out.
It is not that I want to be everything to her all the time – I love the relationship they have.
Rather it is I want to know I can do these things if need be.
I am the kind of person who always has an exit strategy, a safety plan, and a worst case what if scenario get out of jail card stuck up my sleeve.
It is not that I am worried he is going to leave.
Well, that is not an insecurity, which is taunting my consciousness today.
It is that I need to feel confident in all aspects of care taking for our pretty girl. Because what if? What if many things… I need to find a way to be able to safely give her baby pain relief. However, we have not even discussed it, because he says it is his job.
However, I need to know, if for nothing else than I need to know.
I cannot help but wonder if I were cited, would we be negotiating this often?
I do not want to be one of those women who relied on their husband to the detriment of their independents.
However, at the same time, I do not want to be one of those women who excludes their husband, and then wonders why he does not get involved.
He still is not feeling confident enough to let me take her somewhere beyond walking distance by myself.
In his mind Emily’s safety comes first, but what that means to each of us is an entirely other story.
I know the cutie cute cute cute and I will be fine together, and the only way to prove that is by jumping in feet first.
However, we come at life from the opposite angles, so meeting in the middle is harder to achieve than one would think.
I have let him think I have given up on the pram, but between you and me, there is no way I am giving up on that idea.
In fact, I am working on my perfectly sculpted ass as we speak, so when the pram solution does come to me, those designer yoga pants will look exactly as I have been envisioning.
And yes, before you ask, things are coming together beautifully on that front.
I am bouncing back to my pre-pregnancy self, although saying that, pre pregnancy, does not feel quite right. Because I am not who I was before Madam arrived on the scene.
These first months of motherhood have stripped me bare to a place of pure exposure and vulnerability.
Make no mistake, I would not change a thing, and I would like to think the intensity and inescapability of the experience is allowing me to reshape and reconfigure who I am into something other. Whatever that may be.
What I mean by pre-pregnancy self is that I can fit most of my jeans again. Which is just as well, because although I do not like any of them, we cannot afford anything new.
On the positive side, I am feeling vibrant, healthy, and stronger each day.
I never thought I would be happy to have my hair fall out, or welcome back the clockwork of my cycle.
Too bad, we are only taking one turn on this merry go round, because I am assuredly good to go.
Although my pelvic floor needs a lot, more work.
However, in terms of baby transport, for now I will settle for a baby sling.
Well I would settle for one if I could decide on which one to buy.
Baby paraphernalia is worse than trying to choose a jar of jam in the supermarket.
The range is overwhelming, and I keep drowning in a sea of indecision.
Well, that, and it seems these things are somewhat expensive.
So what is our getting out and about worth?
Normally I would say it is priceless. Therefore when the pink version $of inferred ease and portability can be found for 82.90 on eBay, it would be an absolute bargain.
Unless of course, a girl has to weigh it against shelter for the month.
What can I say, home trumps roaming?
Therefore, I wait…
Thus another day passes, whereby I do not have a baby-wearing sling, and I avoid taking Emily out on my own, because putting her in the traditional carrier is too complex for my already overloaded sleep deprived baby brain to handle.
Therefore, we are left wandering just as a Jane Austen character would, up and down the garden path beside the house most afternoons.
Because this I can safely do without a cane, or any other mobility device.