Monday, July 1, 2013


It's a pretty heavy thing being wholly responsible for the life of a human being. You literally hold that little baby's life in your hands (and never do I feel that more than when I'm holding my slippery wet baby over our bathroom's marble floors-I can vividly picture the awfulness of dropping her there.)
At three in the morning I never disliked something as wholeheartedly as my crying baby...only to feel overwhelmed with such an intense love for her a mere three hours later. In the beginning, Nathan asked me a number of times why anyone would ever have a second child. "I will never forget this," he vowed, as she lay shrieking inconsolably in his lap. It's really hard to be a parent. No one tells you that until you're already knocked up; clearly it's a conspiracy.

But now she smiles at us. Big, wide gaping mouth smiles that make her already chubby cheeks puff out as she gurgles a hello to her daddy when he arrives home from work. And I can literally see him forgetting. Everyone tells us that as soon as we begin to feel like we have this parenting thing figured out, when we've developed a routine, that's when everything changes again, so we're just waiting for hell to break out again.

Now I count success as a day with only one incident of spit-up on my shirt, only one outfit change (hers or mine), and 2 hours of freedom while she naps. We're sleeping mostly through the night, breastfeeding is as easy as such an odd thing can be (I am attaching a human to my chest where she gets her entire nutrients from my nipples, a body part that until now has been basically decorative.), and she spends her waking moments staring, wide-eyed and awed, at everything around her.

She can almost hold herself in a seated position, nearly roll herself over, and almost laughs at peek-a-boo, and now I have to leave her. Someone expects me to be able to head back to work and actually work instead of wondering if she misses me as much as I miss her. Someone expects me to be okay with pumping milk into sterile bottles every weekday for the next 10 months instead of cuddling my snuggly daughter as she eats.

But, as awful as all that sounds, I'm actually looking forward to being back at work, to talking to adults other than my husband, to eating lunch with the use of both hands and no need to shovel everything in before my daughter starts to cry, and to being appreciated for my mind rather than feeling like I've lost it as I make up ridiculous words to "Splish Splash I was taking a bath."

It seems that ever since I went off to college, being an adult has meant being torn in half, never being entirely satisfied where I am. In college that meant that I was homesick at school and missing friends and my freedom when I was at home. After college, it meant the word "home" referred to my childhood home and to my apartment. And since having a baby, I look forward to returning to work nearly as much as I am dreading it.


  1. Great post! I STILL feel like people who have more then one baby are completely nuts. But it sounds like your sweet baby is already a better sleeper than my 15-month-old. Oh well! May the good sleep continue for you!

    Have fun at work; I think you've got the right attitude. Good luck!

  2. This is a super post. Love all three of you.

  3. I was going to say something exactly along the lines of Jenny. Great, interesting post. My niece is the cutest one ever. And my sister in law is alright too! Good luck at work Hanna, love you!

  4. Oh, Hanna. This is such a great post! And oh so true. Being through this three times, I know returning to work is extremely hard, but in a lot of ways, it is also good to get out and interact with other adults. You will fall into a great routine. Enjoy each moment now, because life only gets busier! ;) So sweet!

  5. Ellie is a lucky little girl - you and Nathan are wonderful parents! I love you all, you're doing an amazing job!!