Life is good. No, really.

I guess I hadn’t mentioned this in quite this way, but having a kid is freaking awesome. Really.

Serendipity led me to chatting about parenthood with not one but two old online friends tonight and I realized I hadn’t done a report from this place, so here goes.

Some people have to freak out because it’s their process for growing up and accommodating change. I am one. And some people fear that they will never have the same joy as other people because the freaking out must mean they are not in the right place or on the right path or making the right choices.

But here I am, the mama of a fourth month old (awesome) kid and I’m loving my life. If I can do it, anyone can.

My perspective on work has changed, for the better, I think. Stupid meetings piss me off more because I could be playing with my kid, but I can do things that are worth it in the blink of an eye. I suddenly see everyone I encounter as someone’s child and somehow that helps with the empathy, even as I unleash my frustrated wrath upon them. And every single day (with a few exceptions), I walk away from my computer and meetings and all the stuff that comes with them and hang out with my son.

Let me tell you, that guy is pretty cool. He has a really funny sense of humor and is a fabulous conversationalist. Sometimes he gives you what you want (a coo, a smooch) and others he acts like he might and then makes a funny instead (usually a shriek – that’s his thing). He’s taken to “helping” us aim his bottle into his mouth and I’ve been thrilled to once again see that determined and excited face on my baby, the one thing I missed from breastfeeding. He’s an adorable sleeper and  I often can’t wait for him to go back to sleep, but then when he’s asleep I miss him. He’s outgrowing his clothes faster than we can organize them and we are very proud, which is the really neat byproduct of having a very tiny baby.

As for me, while I think I’m actually gaining weight rather than losing it, emotionally I’m doing far better than I think I ever have. Go, meds! I still feel like I should apologize for being happy and content because maybe it’s just because of the meds, but then I don’t care. Life is good. I’ve just about finished processing my whole birth experience, I think, because lately I’m feeling like, “Eh, it happened and it won’t ever be repeated [even if we have more kids, experiences are never exactly the same] and my son is fantastic so I’m over it.” Though I wish things had been different – really, I mostly wish I’d reacted differently – I’m grateful for the experience. My son got me through the longest night of my life (helped out by my mom and husband) and I am forever grateful.

My marriage is better than before. There’s something about having someone else who understands the love and frustration, who has seen you at your most desperate and offered to take over so you can rest, who has quirks and charms that suddenly seem complementary to yours rather than just annoying. His propensity for breaking into song – annoying when I’m telling a work story or trying to read a book – is a blast for my kid. While I’m the empathetic one, my husband is the parent who figured out that our whiny, frustrated kid just wanted to interact with us.  Those first eight weeks were ROUGH, but here we are on the other side, and lo and behold, we naturally functioned as a team, each relying on the other to get through.

And while I had a moment of sadness caused by a day care worker’s flippant comment (“Javi gets so sad and worked up when we walk by him and don’t talk with him!”), I came back around to where we began: having my son in day care isn’t a necessity, it’s in line with our values. He will learn that people care for him who aren’t related to him, that he’s not the center of the world, that kids can be fun and not so fun, that to get through life you have to self-soothe and spend some time just hanging out, and that he can adapt to almost anything. And we learn that we don’t have to be everything to him all the time – we can’t, actually – and get the chance, every day, to learn from the experts while being the super experts when it comes to this little guy who has graced our life.

(Note: not that day care is the only way to do this, clearly, but it’s working for us.)

So there you go. Life is good. And while I wish I’d known everything would work out before – when I was freaking out any one of the thousand times I did – it’s okay. I’m me and my kid loves me. And boy, do I love him.

{Again with the disclaimer: yup, still on meds. Same dose, no major side effects, kind of wanting to stay on them forever at this point. Perhaps that will change, but this experience has forced me to acknowledge that I likely should have addressed the tumultuousness of my emotions long ago.}

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5 thoughts on “Life is good. No, really.

  1. I am tucking this little gem away when I have friends who are struggling with their choice to enroll their kid/s in daycare:

    “having my son in day care isn’t a necessity, it’s in line with our values. He will learn that people care for him who aren’t related to him, that he’s not the center of the world, that kids can be fun and not so fun, that to get through life you have to self-soothe and spend some time just hanging out, and that he can adapt to almost anything. And we learn that we don’t have to be everything to him all the time”

    You are wonderful with words lady.

  2. I’ve read your blog for a long time, but never really comment. I just wanted to say I really appreciate you writing this – it gives me so much hope. My husband and I are a few years off from having kids, and although I know deep down that I want kids I am absolutely terrified that once we do have them it will destroy our marriage and I’ll end up divorced (my parents got divorced after having three kids so I recognize that I’m paranoid…).

    Hearing you say that you appreciate your husband that much more and that having a kid only makes your marriage stronger gives me hope – because I know you would tell it like it is if that wasn’t true! Thanks so much for your honest posting!

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