For five months after Mo was born, we slept on her schedule. Then we got her to sleep on our schedule. And for two glorious months I slept like a champ. I would go to bed soon after her, read a few pages, then fall deep asleep all night long. After years of insomnia, nine months of pregnancy (aka: uncomfortable, restless sleep), and five months of newborn sleep, it was wonderful. But insomnia has slowly slipped back into my life, and here I am, awake when I should be asleep. So I thought I'd write through some updates on motherhood.
First of all, I love it. I really love it, and I literally snuggle Mo each night and say a quiet, sincere thank you for her. I could go on and on about what a spectacular girl she is (no seriously, we're spoiled, she's the best), but I won't. Not right now anyway.
Instead, an update on being a working mother: it's really hard. My feelings are nothing new, working mothers have felt these feelings for as long as there has been working mothers. Feelings like, there's never enough of me to go around. I put in so much energy all day at work that I'm exhausted at home. And I want to give what little time and energy is left to the few precious hours I get with Mo, so I do nothing else. I don't socialize, I don't get involved in the community, I don't actually do things. I'm not a good sister, daughter or friend. And forget keeping up on the house! (Thank God for Mike. It's common to say that men help women with household chores, but the truth in our relationship is that I'm the one helping him.)
The daycare stuff makes it hard, too. If I have to leave her somewhere for nine hours a day, can't it be a situation that makes it as easy as possible? Why does there have to be drama? Why does there have to be reason to question things?
I still fantasize about quitting my job. Or reducing my hours. Neither of which is an option, but I fantasize nonetheless. I like to work and I like my job, but I wish I could do it in 20 hours a week instead of 40. One improvement is that I don't obsessively check in every day. At first I did, I thought about her constantly and wondered about her every activity. Now I know she's happy and comfortable there, and I get absorbed in work, and I don't obsess so much.
Another update? How about breastfeeding. If you've been reading since her birth you'll remember Mo had a difficult time nursing at first. The first few weeks were, well they were just really hard. And then they started to get better. And then even better. And now it's so easy that I don't want to stop. A lot of people look at the fact that I'm still breast feeding at 8 months and say, "Good for you." But the truth is, it's not a heroic act at all. It's easy for us.
In the mornings I bring her into bed and she nurses while we both slowly wake up. When I get home from work, she nurses while I catch up on Facebook. And before bed, she nurses while we quiet down for the night. Easy. What makes it a little difficult is the pumping. I've got it down to a pretty smooth routine, and I reduced to only once a day to save my sanity, but I still hate the inconvenience. Thankfully we have A LOT of frozen milk, so even though my supply is dipping and I'm only pumping 4-8 ounces a day (compared to the 12-15 she eats during the day), she still gets plenty of breast milk.
OK, time to try to sleep again. Mo will be waking me up in no time.