So much for my seemed-reasonable-at-the-time goal of posting something, anything, at least once a week. Sigh... Life and stuff.
But I was corresponding with an old friend of mine, a new mother herself, and she asked if I had any tips, since with my 10 months of experience, I must've figured something out by now, right?
The dearth of posts is due to one big thing and a billion small things. First, things are really, really, really good right now. The Baby sleeps great. She wakes at 6:00 or 6:30 and stays happy until 7:00 or so when we get up. Goes back down for an hour around 9:00 and takes a good long nap around 2:00. The house is clean, meals are still mostly cooked by me in our kitchen, the yard and garden are in OK shape. We're doing good. No, Superman does good. We're doing well. Thank you Tracy Jordan.
Anyway, when things are good, I don't write. I think I mentioned how there's no way to write about the joys of parenthood without sounding trite. BUT LOOK HOW SMALL THEIR HANDS ARE!!! MY HEART FEELS SO FULL I'M AFRAID IT'S GOING TO BURST!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's all true, but geez, let's try harder to express how wonderful it is, eh? To that end, I'm not feeling particularly poignant or original this morning, so I got nothing. Except when I look at The Baby and make her laugh, it really does feel like my heart is gonna explode. Goddamn I hate being trite.
I really did try to think about what I might've figured out though, and I could only come up with two things. The first is to do your best to live in the moment, because they all, good and bad, pass so quickly. The bad ones don't last forever, so don't let them get you down too much, and the good ones don't either, so enjoy them when you can. I've really been trying to appreciate how good we have it right now, because it's only gonna get harder, even if that too will pass.
The other is the idea of holistic familial health, which I've talked about elsewhere. I can't blame my postnatal depression on being so focused on The Baby's health that I neglected my own, but there was a correlation there and I knew I couldn't be a good father or husband if I was angry and sad all the time. I needed to focus on myself for a little while to figure my shit out so I could get to a better place mentally, at which point I was able to focus on being the father and husband I needed to be. I can happily say I think I'm there, but it's like a marriage - every day I need to decide to be that husband and to be that father, and it doesn't happen automatically. Wake up to find The Dog has peed on the bathroom rug again? I need to decide to pause, check my emotions, think about what I'm feeling, think about how I want to react, and then think about how I should react. And being pissy with The Wife is not how I should react. Well that got a little rambly and tangential. My point is, don't forget to take care of yourself if it's going to increase the wellbeing of the family as well.
That's it, in 10 months, that's all I've figured out. Oh wait - also, check the diaper for poop before you undo the tabs, and if there's poop, lay out your wipes. Because when you're trying to keep your little shit factory's hands out of their poopy privates, you don't want to be struggling to get a wipe out of the container.