Day In, Day Out

I never  awaken on my own.  I’m usually smack dab in the middle of some amazing dream when a little person whose feet are in my ribs begins to stir and repeatedly request “muck”, the translation of milk in baby talk.  Staggering out of bed with my daughter in my arms, leaving my dream of lottery winning or beach lying behind forever, I put aside all my needs, never considering even a trip to the bathroom, to satisfy hers instead.  Because that’s what mothers do.

Eventually, I manage a cup of coffee or two, breakfast consists of oatmeal with brown sugar and milk, while a well-worn DVD of Sesame Street or Barney provides the background noise.   I sing along and speak the lines by memory knowing I could recite the entire episode better than a 7th grader reciting the Preamble to the Constitution in History class.  Repetition will do that.

Our outdoor surroundings are breathtakingly relaxing and outside time is a must even on cooler days.  We’re surrounded by trees, pines, hummingbirds, deer, and birds of all colors.  So Emma and I spend our time in the backyard with our dogs, chickens, slide, and sandbox soaking up Vitamin D.   My girl toddles around exploring the ins and outs of pine needles, rocks, dog water, and sticks and I use this opportunity to read a short story or a chapter in a book.   I might take my notebook and colored pen out and attempt a little short story of my own.  But my mind gets weighed down with my character or the conflict that needs to surround him, the voice of inadequateness drowns out the voice of creativeness until I seek refuge in facebook or a round of Words with Friends on my phone.   Eventually  I become distracted enough with technology that I don’t even notice when my fictional character  sneaks away and drowns in the river next to our house.

Lunchtime comes and goes, a cuisine suited to a toddler palette:  noodles, goldfish crackers, bananas and the like.  A yawn or sometimes a one year old frenzy indicates  naptime so  we shake the sand from our shoes and climb into an unmade bed for an afternoon nap.  She wallers and hums.  I pat and sing, and eventually she dozes off.  I then sneak out of bed and quietly bottle around the house doing odds and ends; housework, exercise, more reading or occasionally I may be so bold as to nap with her.

During late afternoon, we pack up and head to the Middle School to pick up my niece Ash from school, then it’s back home for more of the same.  Usually after it’s too late, I realize I didn’t plan anything for supper.  This realization throws me into a maddening search on the internet for a recipe consisting of tomato sauce and salmon.

My husband returns from work, and the evening passes as all other evenings in American households.  Supper, dishes, baths, and bed.

Once a week we join a playgroup and two days later we visit the library  where I engage in adult conversation, usually about kids.

I spend most of my day on a toddler level.  I sing The Itsy Bitsy Spider, I read Goodnight Moon, I blow bubbles, mold homemade play dough, hold hands while climbing steps, clean noses, wipe butts, give hugs and kisses and receive as many back, wash high chairs, cook spaghetti, step on hair clips abandoned on the ground, wipe crayon off the wooden floor, wash sticky hands and faces, and wipe tears.

Through it all, I dream of writing.

Some days I wonder if this is all there is.  I am in the trenches of motherhood.  Stay at home motherhood.  There are times I feel very purposeless, unimportant.  Cooking and cleaning is my existence.  But deep in my soul, I know there is no greater purpose for me than this girl named Emma, whose hair hangs in her eyes, whose nose wrinkles when she grins.  I am the most important person to her right now.  I won’t always be.  This time is numbered, and I’m doing my best to make it count.  For both of us.

 

 

 

This entry is #12 on the list of 30 things.  Describe a typical day.

Advertisements

Day 1: Reporting In

I consider today my first day on the job as an official SAHM.

I was tired by 9:30.

Last week was actually the first week of summer vacation, but my sister and her two rug rats drove down from New Mexico and spent the week with us.  So, of course, the house didn’t get cleaned, boxes from my classroom didn’t get put away, and EK was not on a schedule (as if she’s ever been).  J-Dub also had some family drive in for the weekend, so I can assure you EK was extremely neglected with all the company.  But now the aunts and cousins have all returned to their normal routines, and the baby and I are trying to find our normal routine, if one even exists.

This is my favorite picture as of now.

Tomorrow I’m sure I’ll have another.

I love this picture because that is the image of the baby of my dreams.  A calm, quite, studious daughter who can be found with her nose in a book.

My mom bought EK these 12 little Disney board books. We began reading and EK took the book and put it in a perfect hold.  I had to take a quick snap with the camera, as it didn’t last long.

For the past 4 months, we’ve wondered what kind of a kid EK is going to be.  What kind of an adult?  What kind of a an overall human being.  As much as I’d love to snuggle up in bed on Saturday and read books together, I’m beginning to get the feeling she isn’t going to want to be still for very long.

I know you have all said she has been alert since the day she was born, and it’s true.  Even now, she won’t hardly sleep because she’s afraid she’s going to miss something.  Nursing is beginning to present yet another challenge as she pops her head up and looks around at the slightest sound.  Even snapping her picture while she naps awakens her.

She kicks her little legs  fiercely and pedals a million miles a day on her imaginary bicycle.

She’s a little roly poly now too as she’s learned how to roll across the room.  I lay her on her blanket, leave the room for 1 minute (I swear) and she’s across the room chewing on the vacuum cleaner cord.

I’ve spent my first day as a SAHM trying to clean the floors since she’s on the move.  Because you see, I have this shedding problem.  It’s my hair.  It comes out in GOBS.  It’s probably an undiagnosed medical condition of some sort, and it is totally gross when you pick up your baby and have to grab long brown hair out of her wet little fists and off her wet little chin.  I know…..Grody, Gross, Gross.

On the bright side, I’m looking forward to the weight loss when I’m chasing her around the house.
A girl can dream anyway, can’t she?

On the go or sleeping, she’s a dollbaby.  That’s all there is to it.  Her personality is beginning to emerge and even if she isn’t that calm, quiet, studious child; she’s mine.

And I couldn’t be happier.

Saturday

It’s the first Saturday in June.

The first Saturday of Summer Vacation.

 

Maybe we’ll go to the beach.

Listen to the seagulls call overhead.  Smell the sunscreen and sunshine on our bodies.  Feel the cold water lap around our ankles as I hold EK up on her wobbly legs.  Taste the saltwater as she sucks it from her fingers.

Unfortunately, the nearest beach is about 12 hours away.  Not exactly a day trip.

Instead, we’ll settle for the prairie grasses of the Texas panhandle.  Instead, we’ll listen to the cluck of the chickens, smell the oil rigs pumping nearby,  feel the wind tussle our hair, and taste the freedom of summertime.

 

 

The freedom to sleep later than 6:00 a.m.

The freedom to go barefoot all day long.

The freedom to splash in a kiddie pool and instead imagine it’s the saltwater of the ocean.

Today, I celebrate summer.  And the days to come.

I did not sign a contract to teach school next year.

In faith, knowing God will provide for all our needs.  In faith, knowing He did not give me this baby so that I cannot enjoy every moment with her.  In faith, knowing I now have a new purpose and job.  In faith, knowing these years are going to fly by whether I make money or not.

I am officially a Stay-at-home-mom.

And I am grateful.

Thank you Lord for your awesomeness.

Thank you Lord for Emma Kate.

Happy Summer, y’all.