The question I seem to get asked the most right now (other than “How old is your baby?”) is how am I adjusting to staying at home with a baby full time? I never really know what to say I think because my life is suddenly so radically different than anything it has ever been before. The question stumps me a bit. I would say I am adjusting really well. I love raising Leia and I love love love that I get to be with her everyday and that caring for her is my main gig. Sometimes it seems like a dream that everyday I get to have her with me. Of course it isn’t that simple, it is also the hardest most challenging thing I have ever done (well this and giving birth to her, that was REALLY hard). There is no other job or life experience I have had that can possibly compare.
Time itself is redefined for me. I no longer view time the way my task oriented American self is so used to viewing it, caring for a newborn means in some ways living on their schedule. I guide her into naptimes and feedings the best I can of course, but life is a constant pattern, not of tasks or deadlines, but feedings, walks, naps, and laundry. Everything just flows differently. Weekends no longer mean that much to me, days kind of bleed together with the exception of a few regular activities like church, park day, etc. It’s weird of course, but in some ways kind of freeing, I am forced to kind of slow down and let certain things go or make them wait.
I am pretty good about getting out of the house, and I am lucky to have a church with so many supportive friends, and especially so many other moms to hang out with and learn from. At least a couple days a week I am doing something with other moms and I think that is really important for new stay at home moms to do. I make walking a priority, Leia kind of forces my hand there, fussy time means walk or drive, and I am glad. It is good for both of us in our bodies and souls 🙂 I have even been getting pretty good at including our dog Arnold in walks and we even made it to the dog park just the three of us recently! I felt pretty brave. All these things help keep me sane and healthy for sure.
I can’t believe being a homemaker was ever degraded the way it has been in our society for the past several decades. I know it is full of thankless, mundane tasks, and yes I walk around with spit up all over me half the time and yes I am sure I am not using all those degrees I collected, but I have never been so challenged or had such purpose. This is not for the faint of heart or the feeble minded! I also just feel so amazed at this connection I have with this little person, sometimes I cry just looking at her I love her so much. It makes me really glad to be a woman. There is something so special about being a Mom. In short, I love my new life with all its challenges and ups and downs. I needed this actually.