I think that I am slowly getting the hang of this parenting thing.
At first, there were a few days in a row (after MB returned to work) that Baby L would start to cry and I would lose it. Because, internet, when you have a newborn and you don’t know how it works, the worst sound in the world is the sound of her crying. Because it is obviously your fault. And you obviously don’t know what you’re doing and are a terrible parent. MB came home a few times and found Baby L and I cuddled up on the couch, crying hysterically. Because what else can you do but cry right along with them? Of course, MB thought I had lost it, but then, really, what else is new?
Over the course of the last 8 weeks, though, things have gotten easier. Baby L sleeps more at night and is more alert and really doesn’t cry that much at all. (I still, however, have a low tolerance for it because it makes me feel horrible.) I still have those days though. I still sometimes think I can’t take a minute more and that if I don’t get a glass of wine soon, my head is going to pop open and all of this baby-shaped confetti is going to fly out. I guess this feeling is sort of normal? (Help me out, internet…) One day last week, MB got home late from work and Baby L had been hating everything for about three hours and when he got home, I gave him about 30 seconds to prepare and then I handed him a crying baby and walked outside. Where I sat for an hour. Alone. And do you know what, internet? There was no head explosion and no baby-shaped confetti. And then I did it all again the next day.
I’m not sure that MB understands just how crazy being a stay-at-home mom can be. Not that he isn’t fantastic and amazing and all that jazz, just that sometimes I get the feeling he thinks that I am overreacting. But then I talk to my other mommy friends and they reassure me that having a kid, especially your first one, makes you sort of a lunatic. Because it is totally a hard job. And it is mostly thankless. Because, even though Baby L seems excited to get fed and shit, she doesn’t ever say, “Hey, thanks, Mom. You’re the bees knees.” She’s totally rude like that.
But yesterday, I gave her a bottle and put her upright to burp her and she laid her little, beautiful head on my chest and curled up and went to sleep. And I cried. And this time, because I am so grateful for her and not because I was doubting that I could do it. Because in that moment, I knew I was doing it right. And it was as if she was saying, “Hey, I might not say it enough, Mom, but thanks!” And those are the moments that make all the puke, and poop and sleeplessness worth it.
Ironically, the title of this post is also the title of the first song I sang to Baby L in the midst of one of her first crying fits. I have since found that “Penny Lane” works much better. She’s got pretty good taste, I’d say.