Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Meeting the world
Well, sweet girl...you've been in the world a bit under 3 weeks. So what do you think? As far as we can tell, you're pretty happy to be out and about in the post-womb experience. With all three of you kiddos, I expected some serious disoriented trauma. As in, more of a "what the heck" expression about having been ejected from this floating, dark existence into the chaos of the world. But all of you seemed really happy to meet us. Am I just projecting that on you? I don't understand why you're not confused and a bit angry about things. But you seem delighted to snuggle, nurse, poop, and sleep your life away. As it should be.
Two nights ago, I swear you started smiling. All those party-poopers say it's just gas, but no way. I was giving you little kisses on your cheeks and your face evolved into this gentle, precious grin with each kiss. I called Dad over to see you and we were laughing at your little baby grins. He tried giving you kisses, and your face scrunched up in disgust. Hilarious! You didn't like his stubble, I think, and thankfully I don't have any. =)
Today, I braved the grocery store for the first time with all three of you. It's a bit like pulling off the band-aid, in that you just need to jump in and do it. I remember the same fear when Andrew was little...everything was going great with the transition, but the idea of the grocery store struck fear in my heart. And then it was fine. Then adding a third little munchkin into the mix...well, the terror came back. But I was blown away. I promised myself I wasn't going to resort to any of the lowest-level of parenting techniques I use in "crisis situations" - like buying balloons to keep kids quiet or muttering threats under my breath. I was going to stay cool and calm and collected. I love taking the kids to the grocery store normally - the boys really dig that rocket ship cart. But I wasn't sure how long you'd give me in the store before needing to nurse and get the heck out.
You were all perfect. I mean, seriously. Perfect. It was like you all got together and said, "Mom might go insane if we all start crying at once in the store. So let's just get her through this trial shopping trip and be dolls about the whole thing." It was like I'd rented children to take the grocery store. No one asked for anything, other than Andrew really-really-really wanting that cow balloon at the end....but even then, he listened to my explanation that only Trader Joe's gives them for free. He kept asking for hugs all the time, which was weird...but adorable. You just chilled out in the sling and snuggled in for the ride. Not a peep. Jack helped load the food onto the conveyor belt and was just generally adorable. Since he's been hit-or-miss right now with stinkerness, I was overwhelmed with gratitude.
In the parking lot, this woman came up to me and said: "I have to tell you. I don't know if this was just a good day for them or what. But your boys were amazingly well behaved. And that you came out with a tiny one! You deserve a medal." To have had the experience validated was frosting on the cake, as I told her I'd had some terror about the shopping trip so I think you all were bringing out your A-game.
I hired someone to watch the boys on Wednesdays for a few hours and take them on some type of outing - starting next week. I plan to use that time for work and getting grading done (so it doesn't all have to be in the evening when Dad is home), but I also know you might end up needing me that whole time and work will be...well, not happening. The idea of having some non-chaotic snuggle time sounds really nice too, and worth the expense of the extra help - even if I have to push my work until evening again. Right now, you tend to have people crawling all over us when we snuggle. ;) Or...just being overwhelmed with "aerobic love" from the boys...both of them scrambling to hold you, pet you, push you in the swing. You might need a bit of a break. Plus, the boys are going to love going to the aquarium or the beach with Tess. We all win in the end, I hope.