We have been couped up in the house this week and today I was going a little crazy. The hardest part of being a mom, for me, is the fact that I cannot just go. I like to be on the move. I like to explore. There were days when I would get in the car and have no idea where I was going but just knew that I needed to get out of the house. Day trips to Sonoma, Emeryville, Point Reyes, etc seemed to always be on my radar, but now with a little one I find it much harder to do this. I have to have a plan, I have to plan every single moment or else I am stuck in the car with a screaming child, pulling over to nurse, or turning around. I have tried a few times to be spontaneous, but neither time ended the way I wanted it to. I have even made it to my destination, but decided not to stop. She was asleep and I couldn't bare to wake her. The whole getting in and out of the car is such a drag, which is why I like cities and towns that are designed for walkers....ours is not. I have to drive to a spot where I can walk around. From our house I can walk to the garden center, a pharmacy that I hate, a doughnut shop, and a newly discovered (and tasty) Thai restaurant. Not too bad but not enough for me. Having to carry your garden center purchases the 2 mile trek home is not exactly ideal, but I have done it. :)
So today we took a very short drive to the end of downtown, the very end, and walked up and down. We visited the bakery, some shops, a used bookstore, and the bank, plus some window shopping. It felt great to get out and be amongst people. Not only for me but for Marilyn too. She didn't sneeze once on the walk and her nose miraculously stopped running (does that mean its our house????). We had a great time. She watched the bakers make their crackers, got foot kisses from a golden retriever, and had many people coo over how adorable she is even with red swollen eyes. By the end of the walk I could tell she was ready for her nap, so into the car we go the 5 miles home, except despite my obnoxiously loud and horrible singing she fell asleep about three blocks from our house. We pull in the driveway, I turn off the car, open the door and voila she is awake, a little groggy but awake. This is go time, I either get her to sleep immediately or we have lost the nap completely and then the day is in the air. Today we lost it. We were able to recover with a very very short late afternoon nap, but getting there wasn't pretty. Why am I telling you this? Because it brings me to my next dilemma...dun dun duuunnn...the routine.
If you know me, you know I am not a person of routine. Tradition yes, routine no. I believe they are greatly different and the later drives me nuts. I rarely eat left overs because I don't want to eat the same thing two days in a row, I like to just go and see where we end up, I hated working a 9-5 unless it was crazy different everyday and I don't want anything planned to the minute. I think this is the artist in me. On the contrary I married Mr. Routine so maybe I am longing for it somewhere deep within, but now it is becoming one of my greatest motherly challenges. The truth is I have long despised my friends with kids and their "routines". Really you can't go because that is nap time? Well here I am at the crossroads and it is looking like I need to suck it up. The morning nap is already a routine. If she doesn't get it I can kiss my day goodbye, not that she is a difficult baby or anything, but things will not flow easily. Its hard to describe, but she pretty much won't take any naps, and getting her to bed is like trying to convince Ralphie that cheese isn't any good (Ralphie, the dog, loves cheese). As she is getting older I can see that our days go more smoothly when we have a certain flow. See couldn't even write it there.
The bottom line is I need to do what is best for her, so I NEED to give it a REAL try. I feel like it goes against my genetic make up, but alas I must. I have done the "half-way" try several times, but when your hearts not in it it doesn't work, so we failed or I failed. It seems to be spirally slightly out of control and I am getting the feeling that I need to get with it. This week she has been holding out her bedtimes so she can be rocked to sleep by her Daddy. He developed a "Daddy dance" in Maui and it has been doing the trick when I can't get her down. While it is really sweet that they can share this time together, a 10:30 + bedtime is not fit for a 4, almost 5, month old. I really kind of like the fact that she will sleep until 7:30am or even 8:30am some mornings, but it tends to throw our days off. I'd rather have those hours in the evening anyways, so I can actually relax before I go to sleep instead of face planting into bed.
The next step is to actually do it and not just think about it. That is why I am writing this down, now you all have to hold me accountable. I could put it off until after Thanksgiving, but then that opens the door for me to wait until after the New Year. So here it goes, or here I go, jumping head first into the world of routine. Hopefully it doesn't eat my creative soul.
|Some playtime, before the cold hit.|
|Blurry because the chair was in full swing but you can see her smile through the goo.|
|The worst of it.|
|Still lingering a little.|
|She looks like she was crying but no that's just eye drip-age.|
|We put her in 49ers gear for Sunday and guess what? She is as lucky for them as she was for the Giants :( I should have known by her facial expression that she is not a niners fan.|