Maternity leave, which was so snuggly and warm and boring, is over. I’m back at work as a copywriter, meaning I have to shower and get dressed and hope Wilder doesn’t throw up down my shirt in the baby carrier on our mile walk to daycare. But he usually does, which results in a wet bra and a sour smell that lingers unless I take my shirt off in the work bathroom and wash the milk out before it dries.
But once Wilder is cooing happily with his daycare crew and I can confirm whether the wetness in my bra is sweat or puke, I stroll to the Blue Line (this is the most peaceful 10 minutes of my entire day, so I generally try to walk as slowly as possible) and I daydream about the buckets of coffee I’m going to chug the minute I jump off the train.
Starbucks, I love you. Peach & Green, I love you. Burnt-tasting drip coffee in the office, I even love you, too, especially when the day starts at 5 a.m. with a baby who’s discovering that, yes, he has a voice, and yes, it’s loud.
But when I’m home, hanging out with my family – it still feels weird to say that, even after four months – the pace is much slower. There’s less screen time, more time spent outside exploring our Ukrainian Village neighborhood, more daytime naps and way more time spent in PJs. The Hollie and James who used to love traveling and packing the schedule as full as possible are now homebodies … and we like it.
My first Mother’s Day was laid-back, despite my having a fever and sore throat I likely picked up from some sick daycare kid somewhere in the mix. James had this same sickness the week before, so it’s only fair I had it next. On Mother’s Day.
James gave me the greatest Mother’s Day gift (next to Hamilton tickets, which I got as an early Mom’s Day surprise because I am married to the greatest human on the planet): A morning free of Wilder’s 5 a.m. wakeup. Pure fricking bliss. Seriously, you don’t know how amazing sleep is until it’s gone, and at that point, you’re too delirious to remember life before you became a zombie.
We did our usual weekend stuff: Walks around the ‘hood in the stroller, lunch to go from the Goddess and Grocer, a picnic in Wicker Park, sunburned shoulders because I forgot what life is like when it’s not freezing cold. It was a really, really good day.
And yeah, we had an overtired meltdown in the park. And yeah, a weird guy told us his life story during our picnic. And yeah, there was baby puke down my shirt. But it was a really perfect first Mother’s Day, and I’m pretty darn happy to be a mom, especially when we’re lucky enough to catch these little moments on camera.
There’s going to be a day I miss the baby barf. Maybe.
Happy belated Mother’s Day to all the moms out there, whether you have kids in your arms, bellies or hearts. It’s not easy, nor is it clean. But it sure is rewarding.
I know, I know. It’s been THREE WEEKS since my last post … but I have a good reason, and it’s more than just an aversion to computers now that summer is (finally) here. Well, not counting today, which is gray and rainy, and not counting last week, which was basically an early fall and required outerwear, but I digress.
We’re pregnant. PREGNANT! There is a BABY GROWING INSIDE OF ME. And because I’ve been on the verge of spilling the beans since the moment I peed on the stick – and because my face has been shoved in the toilet for most of that time, too – I’ve seriously slacked on the blog and have instead chosen only to Google baby things and scream about everything on Pinterest. Seriously, my baby board is growing by the minute.
Maternity clothes that don’t look like giant tents? Birthing plan guidelines? Convertible diaper bags? Kick-ass kid names? This fitted crib sheet? GIVE ME ALL THE THINGS.
I’m currently 14 weeks along, due Jan. 9, 2016 – we took this picture last week in the baby’s future nursery in the new house, despite my looking more bloated than baby-bumped – and, for the most part, I feel fantastic!*
*I mean, I’m barfing constantly and I’ve lost more weight than I’ve gained, but I can’t help but feel thrilled about all the great shit headed our way. OK, and I can’t sleep and am forever constipated (I’m quickly learning that nothing is TMI when it comes to pregnancy), but who cares? THERE IS AN ACTIVE KID INSIDE ME WITH LONG LEGS AND A CUTE LITTLE FACE AND A STRONG HEARTBEAT.
But enough of my yammering about the now beet-sized bundle of joy chilling in my uterus. Just check out these high kicks:
James and I weren’t really expecting to be pregnant this summer, especially smack-dab in the middle of festival season with a billion house projects on the to-do list, but we couldn’t be more thrilled. Seriously, you should have seen the blubbering mess we became upon hearing the baby’s heartbeat for the first time.
Bless James’s heart for putting up with my sickness, my hormones, and my baby brain. And bless his heart again for constantly ordering me fake vodka tonics at the bar so our friends were none the wiser. He’s going to be such a cool dad, and I’m pumped the cat’s finally out of the bag! And speaking of cats …
What’s going on with YOU lately? It’s been a long time, guys. Anybody headed to Pitchfork this weekend, with or without a baby bump?
I guess before I start this, I should write a little disclaimer: I’m not pregnant, just curious and questioning. You know, a typical Wednesday.
Piggybacking on a recent post admitting my baby fever, I’ve been thinking about little ones a lot lately – specifically growing them inside of me and giving up my body and entire life to motherhood. I mean, no biggie, right?
I’m pretty sure a lot of these thoughts are spurred by my impending 30th birthday, which has always been the age I told myself I would start having kids. As if it was something to plan based on age alone!
Needless to say, all of this made me ask myself if I was ready for such a huge life change. I’m married to a guy who will no doubt be the coolest parent and teach our kids a bunch of useless trivia, and my cat is kind enough to allow a human addition in the mix. My job is flexible and lets me to work from home and make my own schedule, and my friends are all having (or thinking about having) little kidlets of their own, which means playdates and hand-me-downs and commiseration and wine.
But amid all those positives, I feel unsure and conflicted. The whole “giving my body up for nine whole months” thing makes me nervous. What if I’m super sick, or I cant enjoy anything because I’m uncomfortable and have FOMO? What if I’m not as prepared – emotionally, physically, financially, socially – as I need to be?
I mean, our apartment is cute, but dragging baby + billion things baby needs up our stairs could be challenging, not to mention that our neighbors probably don’t want to hear screaming and crying (from kids or adults) when they’re trying to watch “The Bachelor” in peace. And my flexible job, which I do enjoy for reasons other than its flexibility, doesn’t pay much at all. And kids are so, so expensive.
But they’re fulfilling, too. And darn cute.
If I sat down and truly planned the ideal time to be pregnant, I don’t think I’d ever do it. But is that the point? That there is no ideal time to start a family? That you have to put on your big girl panties and just do it, otherwise you’ll wake up years down the road with no kids and a bunch of regret?
And let’s not even get into the fact that sometimes, conception and successful pregnancy can take a long, long time. Like, years. Who are we to plan on getting pregnant in a certain month without knowing what will actually happen that month and beyond?
I’m not really sure the point of this post – it’s really just an outlet for me to muse and question and wonder, I guess. But how prepared can (or should) we be for a baby, or should we even plan at all? I mean, if the Teen Mom girls can do it, can’t we all?
*Our wedding photos by 13:13 Photography, which I love dearly.