Equilibrium

Or, In which I do not discuss the film (even though it is awesome)

It has been a month since I went back to work at the day job. A month since I had to act against all of my maternal instincts and leave my baby for the bulk of his waking life. A month of tears and guilt and stoicism and relief that he hasn’t been unduly traumatized by our separation, a month of gratitude for the family who has come in to watch him and help me around the house, a month of short-sleep nights as baby reverted from sleeping through the night to waking multiple times a night every night, a month of reminding myself that I am working now so that my husband, my love, my life partner can have some relief from supporting us on his income alone and also reminding myself that I am working now because I will be homeschooling later, a month of agonizing over whether to remain ensconced in the city or sell out and retreat to the bucolic splendor of a country estate.

Motherhood hit me harder than I expected, in the best possible way but also an excruciatingly difficult way because of the reality of my life.

I am finally starting to feel like I have found my new equilibrium. Baby is sleeping through most of the night more often than not now. I am fully caught up and up to speed at work, mentally and physically. I have almost resigned myself to the reality of this necessity. I have begun to think of doing things for myself again – an overnight trip with my husband maybe, what cos-plays I want to update or make for costume season (Halloween, Ren Faire, Mardi Gras), giving my hotel-booking friend a soft confirmation for DragonCon next Labor Day. I have moments when I realize I have time to write, and feel frustration that I lack either the energy or an immediately possessing idea; that angst usually precedes a creative swell. (If it does now, I for one am intensely curious to know which story of the ridiculous multitude in my head catches my attention.)

I do not presume this fragile balance will hold. Family will eventually go home, baby will have to go into daycare, and I will have to find time for all the chores being done for me right now. Baby will stop going to bed at 730 and napping half the day, and will need more of my diligence on weekends as he becomes mobile. I will finish stories and need to find the spare time to polish them and publish – along with revamping the things I have published now, all of which need some type of update or another.

I assume that life is now a constant balancing act, and every time I find equilibrium it will be finite, and only when it is gone will I realize the surface beneath me has shifted yet again.

But for today, I feel like I have my balance. And it’s beautiful.

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2 Comments

Filed under Housekeeping, Ramblings

2 responses to “Equilibrium

  1. The absolute best thing you can do for yourself is to get a babysitter on a regular basis for a few hours. Then
    1) catch up on sleep,
    2) do anything crucial (paying bills),
    3) do what YOU want.

    Young teens are a good investment – older teens are often too busy – if you’re there to supervise. And they’re cheaper.

    A breather now and then that doesn’t depend on a spouse will keep you sane. Baby will be better off because you’re in better shape. And if someone wants to give you a baby present, mention the babysitter fund.

    Just saying – I had a nanny half time for my three when I first got sick and had to stay home – she’d come in and say, “What do you need today?” It kept me sane, and allowed me to homeschool. My energy never went to laundry, or taking the three of them to the park, or washing a floor. Only to the things only I could do.

    • “the things only i could do.” that’s a good litmus test. right now we’re still in the feeding/comforting stage with that…but i have no doube the parameters will change as little one does!

      i have actually considered calling in sick to work and then going ahead and leaving the house, to go sleep somewhere. i am not quite desperate enough for sleep yet, but i can see a time….

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