On Friday night I was e-mailing back and forth with a friend of mine from college who serves as the volunteer IT service provider for the school I'm working to start. Our website is experiencing a glitch, and she was helping me sort it out. We finally realized I needed more storage area on the server. Rather than purchase more, I was asking her if there was anything we could delete. The thing taking up the most space was my old wedding website (not 2000 Dollar Wedding, but our actual site for guests). I asked her to give me a chance to read through out one last time before she deleted it.
You guys, I used to be fun! I used to be interesting! Reading over my old bio reminded me that I used to have hobbies! I used to sew and collect things and read.
And now? Right now I wake up (and cuddle with all three boys for about 15-20 minutes every day which is very awesome and sometimes we have dance parties--Tate really starts bouncing when the music is on) and then get ready for the day. I frantically try to pick up clutter that I was too tired to clean up the night before. Then I work non-stop from 7:30am-3:30pm (or 5pm, depending on the day). And then it's the dinner/bath/walk around the neighborhood/story time/breastfeeding blitz. And then it's 7:30pm and both boys are asleep and I frantically work until 10:00pm or 10:30pm because I have to get to sleep because Tate wakes up several times in the night.
And it's five of those days back-to-back (punctuated with frequent evening events, like board meetings, from 7-9pm). And, honestly, the weekends are harder than the weeks because at least we have childcare help Monday-Friday.
But! (I promise this is not another whiny post). I am starting to see the faintest glimmer of light at the other side of this tunnel. Tate is finally starting to sleep consistently from 7:30pm to 6am or 6:30am. If I go to bed at 10pm or 10:30pm, I can get eight hours of sleep. What?!? (Let's overlook the fact that once he FINALLY started sleeping through the night, I got 150 bug bites--chiggers, maybe?--and was up all night trying to resist the urge to itch). But that's besides the point.
My baby (who will only be a "baby" for one more month!) is finally sleeping through the night and I am regaining my brain capacity (slowly but surely).
When I was pregnant with Henry, I remember my midwife telling me that I just needed to make it through the first year. Since I tend to be an over-achiever, I figured that it would get easier for us before the year mark. I knew that I would force myself to nap when Henry napped and that I would intentionally reduce my workload in order to accommodate the new stress in our life.
But she was right. And I was way wrong. It actually took me 16 months to get adjusted (but who's counting?).
So we are coming up on the year mark with number two. This time around, we knew that we would be pushed to the very edge of our capacity. And it hasn't actually been that bad. But I'm still glad this part is almost over.
Don't get me wrong; I am cherishing as many moments as I can. When Henry asks me to talk to him while he's pooping on the toilet, I sit in there (breathing through my mouth), knowing that the day will come (all too soon) when he is locking me out of the bathroom. They are too precious. This time is too fleeting. The days are long, but the years are short.
But in the meantime, I want to reclaim the aspects of myself that are important to me and carry them next to me as I move through my days as a mother and a full-time+ worker. I think this newfound sleep is going to help a ton. Additionally, Tate and I are getting close to wrapping up breastfeeding. At eleven months, we are only nursing first thing in the morning and last thing at night. I am already enjoying this slow process of reclaiming my freedom and my body. So as I set goals for myself each month, I really want to focus on what I need in my life on a daily/weekly/monthly/yearly basis in order to fill fulfilled as a human being.
I know I'm never going to be the same person that I was before children, but I want to reclaim those parts of myself that have gotten lost in the new mother hustle. I'm looking forward to it!