Wednesday, June 22, 2011

the freeway of love

In case you've ever wondered about this:

yes, it is possible (thanks to completely-stopped traffic, a well-placed dark tunnel, and a hands-free pumping bra) to hook yourself up to a battery-powered breast pump and let that sucker go to town while negotiating a 50-mile morning drive to a conference.

For someone who likes multi-tasking, it was freaking heaven.

I think a few semi-drivers might have gotten an eyeful.  But I got something done during my 90-minute crawl down the freeway, and that makes up for it.

"What's the problem, officer?  It's hands-free."*

*no actual police officers were encountered during this event.  Thankfully.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

day after day

I've been trying to think of something exciting to say about my life that would necessitate a blog post, but I'm not quite sure what that might be.  It's pretty much life-as-new-normal these days around here, which alternates between "total thrill of being a mom" and "mundane daily grind plus more laundry."  Honestly, babies can be kind of tedious.  Not that I'm complaining, because really; parenting is mostly great.  But it certainly never lets up.  And that's okay.

Baby Girl has decided that she hates pears and avocados (the look on her face while trying the latter for the first time was priceless) but other than that, she's a champion eater.  Naps have improved dramatically over the past month, although she's still not into much more than thirty minutes at a time.  Maybe that will change.  Or not.

My husband is mostly a totally fantastic dad, but there are times when he comes home after I've had the baby all day and he's all excited to see her (and she's ridiculously excited to see him) and then he hangs out with her for, like, ten minutes, and then says he's tired, which pretty much makes me want to kick his ass.  Now, I get that working all day is tiring because, you know, I do that too (with a schedule that involves working weekends so I'm with her on a few weekdays).  But, as much as I hate making wide, sweeping statements about men and women, I think being the mom is harder.  At least if you're the primary food source.  About 90% of me loves nursing - the bonding, the fact that my body is finally able to do something related to reproduction - and the other 10% of me will happily give it up when the day comes, and go back to normal bras and a pump-less lifestyle and shirts that fit again (she says, hopefully). 

Also, we have added two teeth into the equation, which makes my nipples quake with fear.

So, that's about it for now.  It's a good life.  A very ordinary, suburban, family life.  The one I dreamt of for all those years.  Some days I can still hardly believe it actually happened.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

the girl on the bus

The other night, my husband and I were on the bus coming home from a concert.  It was about 11:15pm.  Bus clientele at that time of night is always interesting, a slice of life I don't get all that often, and sometimes I marvel at how gentle the most unexpected people can be.  (The fact that I find this unexpected probably says more about me than it does about them.  But I digress.)

After a few stops, two young women got on the bus.  They were chatting away, trying to untangle the earbuds for one girl's i.pod.  They sat down and giggled and plugged in the earbuds, sharing the two between them so each got one ear's worth of listening, and chatted away.

They were pretty clearly happy to be away from adult supervision, which I am guessing they may not have much of in their lives.  It's the clothing choices that led me to this conclusion (although, yes, I am aware that teenaged girls can wear one outfit out of the house while sneaking a completely different one with them, but these girls had no purse or bag whatsoever, so unless they hid their long-sleeved prairie girl dresses underneath a tree, I think that's unlikely).  One girl was particularly, you know, well-endowed.  And, might I add, braless.  (Another hint that she might not have an adult around to help her with that.)  Every once in awhile you see a young woman like this who is clearly unaware of the impact her physical appearance has on others, but this one seemed pretty aware of it.  Tossing her hair, smiling at any male within spitting distance, laughing and chatting and on the downtown bus at 11:00pm without any adults nearby...

...and I panicked.

Not for her, because she actually seemed fine.  I hope she is okay in this life, not just that night, but each day.  No, I panicked because I realized that my child, at that moment happily sleeping away at her grandparents' house, is one day going to be a teenager.  With boobs.  And the option of low-cut t-shirts.  Without a bra.  And going on the bus.  Downtown.  At 11:00pm.  Even though I would not be okay with most of those things, but some of them I don't get to choose (hello, boobs) and some of them I might not get to control (hello, downtown bus at 11:00pm) and OHMYGOD she is going to grow up and then she will go away and then she will be on the bus and old creepy guys might look at her and I will not always be there to beat the everliving shit out of them if they do and possibly some horrifyingly-named Congressman might tweet her an inappropriate picture or she could get drunk one night and do something dumb that can't be undone and and there are a million other things that could happen and OHHOLYMERCIFULLORD WHAT AM I GOING TO DO ABOUT THAT?

Kind of took the fun out of the evening for a moment.

There were some other kids on the bus too, and when I say, "kids," I mean, "college-student-aged-people" who would, no doubt, hate being called, "kids," but I am old now so that's what happens.  Anyway.  They looked responsible.  Mostly scanning their varied hand-held devices and not paying attention to anybody else, but they also looked like they were not likely to be on any "Girls Gone Wild" episodes anytime soon, so that made me feel better.  I took a deep breath.

There are days when I cannot wait for Baby Girl to grow up, at least enough so that she will be able to a.) nap; b.) no longer require diapers; and c.) tell me what she needs (although I realize this comes with a whole bunch of other talking-back so that's kind of a toss-up). 

But that night, on the bus, I wished she could stay like she was, right then, forever.  Sleeping in the pack-and-play at the grandparents, or safe in her crib at home, where I can walk up the stairs and check on her at anytime.

I realize this isn't going to happen.

But a mom can dream.