Friday, April 4, 2008

First lessons learned

This post is actually about me, not Jonas. Yeah, didn’t you read the fine print at the beginning of this blog? It clearly states that I reserve the right to occasionally write about myself, after the baby is born.

A baby’s growth curve is exponential in the first year of life. I’d argue that the parents’ is too. My first month as a new mom was wonderful, exhilarating, exhausting, and… instructional!

Here are the top five things that I learned:

1. You can do amazing things with your toes.

There have been so many times when I couldn’t pick up something off the floor that I desperately needed. Damn! If only I had a few more arms, like that Indian goddess. (Sorry I don’t know her name.) Then, I had an important realization: in addition to my two hands, I’ve got ten more digits on the floor! Why not use them? I’m not as good as a chimp, but I’m getting there. Give it another few months I may be writing out checks with my feet, holding Jonas in one hand and cooking a full dinner in the other.

2. Wipes are a rip.

It only took me a week to learn this one. Seriously, is there some kind of wipe conspiracy that I haven’t been cued in on? They just smeared around the “business”. Four wipes later, I could finally see skin again. Are you kidding me?! And they’re expensive. Let me do the math for you: 20 diapers x 4 wipes per session = 80 wipes per day. There are only a few hundred wipes in a box.

I took to using a warm wash cloth. Works better. I’m happy to report that since I formed this initial opinion I did find a brand of wipes that are thicker and get the job done. Huggies Naturals. Now I can use one wipe per change. I can live with that.

3. It’s a proven fact: wine tastes phenomenal after you haven’t had it for nine months.

I had my first glass of wine a week or so after we brought Jonas home. It was glorious. Granted, between the sleep deprivation, the physical exhaustion from the labor, and the relaxation effects of the wine I passed out at 7 pm that night. Well, it was worth it.

4. It’s important to upgrade your cable package.

If you have the basic, BASIC cable package like we do, I would strongly recommend upgrading to the next level. I never thought that I’d do much tv watching, as I find tv programming incredibly boring. The thing is in the early weeks of maternity leave, there is a lot of sitting/lying around. So what do you do? I naively thought that I’d be sailing through books while on maternity leave. But holding and squirmy baby and trying to feed him, while holding a book still—hell, forget holding it still; holding it period!—is virtually impossible, at least at my novice status. So, I spend a lot of time looking at the tv. I ow know the manufacturer of every advertised pharmaceutical, have seen more trashy tv shows than I care to admit here and could tell you anything you want to know about getting in touch with a lawyer who can help you get the money “you deserve” from your accident.

5. Changing boys’ diapers: the anti-dote to Dilly-dally syndrome

According to my husband I have long suffered from DDS. He says I lolly-gag. I prefer to think of it as taking my time and being thorough. It drives me crazy to rush through things. “Liz, you’ve got to pick up the pace,” he says, the first few times I changed Jonas’ diaper. Sounds reminiscent of our old runs together. “Listen, you change ‘em your way; I’ll change ‘em mine.” Well, that line worked fine for a little while. Then it happened. I was changing him in the early morning hours, doing my best to clean every inch thoroughly, and all of a sudden Jonas started spraying like a fire hose. All over the place! The changing table, my arms, the wall, his own body—all doused. I won’t describe the “other” scenario. Yep, that's happened too. I finally got the idea after a dozen times. Now, I’m wicked fast, and somehow I still manage to get the job done. Passes QC inspection every time.

So many changes, so much wonder. What will next month hold?


Judy MSM said...

Lizzy...ah, would you believe you don't recall most of that stuff after a while. In fact, I forgot going through any of it until I read your eloquent description, and, oddly enough, as the mother of a boy, was forced to remember similar experiences. Maybe that's the beauty of aging...maybe not! It was nice reading about you...we love you! Judy

Anonymous said...

I hope it makes you feel better to know that I still use 3 wipes per diaper, have been "doused" on more than one occassion, and became addicted to Judge Judy while on maternity leave.

Your comrade in motherhood,

Anonymous said...

You are hilarious! I was always amazed as to how much of a mess in um, going number two, a baby could make. Eww. When Christine became potty-trained, however, I was a bit sad. I missed the bonding during that time. Enjoy every minute as it sounds like you are! Yes, wine tastes amazing when you haven't had it in awhile, as does "chevre", vous connaissez, "chevre"? Do you remember that in the Dordogne? Fun times.