Monday, October 27, 2014

baby FAQ, month 6

Q: How can it possibly have been six months already?

A: You're asking me? It feels like just yesterday that I was up at midnight and then again at four. Oh, wait, that's because I was. She's occasionally reverting to an old-school sleeping schedule, lucky us.

Q: Relatedly, what was the doctor's recommendation for you in terms of getting over your bronchitis?

A: Eight to ten hours of sleep a night. I was like, yeah, sure, I'll just go do that.

Q: How goes the introduction of "solid" (i.e., pureed) food?

A: Feeding takes four times as long, is ten times as messy, and the subsequent diapers would make a musk ox proud. Also I experienced a little heartbreak around it because she is growing up so fast. And she does not like squash.

Q: What is your advice for Losing the Baby Weight?

A: Develop some flaws before you have a baby. If I'd had a flat stomach before getting pregnant, then this stubborn little belly pudge would be a source of much frustration and self-consciousness, and people would be saying things like, "You're almost there! Good job!" But since I've had a rounded stomach ever since I stopped being twenty-one and started eating actual food again, my clothes fit almost as they did before and I hear, "You look like you never had a baby!" It's called managing expectations. (And I cut myself slack for my physical imperfections now, even though they are virtually identical to the imperfections I had before. So that's good, although it shouldn't take gaining and losing forty-five pounds for a woman to be okay with the body she has, but what can you do.)

Q: What was your Halloween costume?

A: Three Wolf Moon family. Because it comes in a onesie as well. And yes, we did take her to the Halloween party, and she was the belle of the ball, but oh my was she cranky the next day. A little discontented Cinderella.

Q: How is your first Halloween without Darcy going?

A: Very sad. I haven't planned any costume for Bingley; he wouldn't have been able to come to this past weekend's party anyway, but for the past four years there were dog costumes documented heavily on Facebook (Red Riding Hood and the wolf; Sherlock Holmes and the Hound of the Baskervilles; St. Francis and the wolf of Gubbio; hipster Red Riding Hood and hipster wolf). Bingley has a red hoodie which (obviously) has been utilized extensively, and Perdita has a white fuzzy suit with ears, so perhaps he shall be Red Riding Hood yet again and Perdita will step into the wolf's role. 

Q: Hipster wolf?

He is concerned that his kibble is not local.

Q: How are you finding time to read with a six-month-old?

A: Honestly, I am not sure. I feel like I just snatch a page here and there and somehow it adds up to books. I know that sounds like humblebragging, or like protesting that you can find time for anything if it matters to you!! but that's not my intention. And I am careful about my intention when saying things like that, because I was one of those horrid judgy people pre-baby, thinking, "There is no way I won't find time for working out every day; it's simply a matter of priorities; mothers who say there's no time are just making excuses," and then of course on days when she goes to daycare my priorities come up solidly against the chronological limitations of twenty-four hours and my own physical limitations in terms of needing more than five hours of sleep in that twenty-four. Ah well. Pride goeth before a saggy butt. 

Q: What have you read in the snatched intervals when you should be un-sagging your butt?

A: Friday Night Lights: A Town, A Team, And A Dream, by H.G. Bissinger. Pretty intense and good. While on maternity leave, I tried watching the show because everyone raves about it, and after eight episodes during which I got more and more grudging about this self-assignment, I thought, Okay, well, we must be nearing the end of this season, I can probably get that far, and then I discovered there are TWENTY-TWO episodes in that first season and the experiment ended. So I figured I'd read the book instead. I should have just done that in the first place. 

American Thighs: The Sweet Potato Queens' Guide to Preserving Your Assets, by Jill Conner Browne. Mildly amusing but only rarely laugh-out-loud funny.

Marie Antoinette: The Journey, by Antonia Fraser. Fraser is such a good writer. This was a fantastic biography.

Blood on the Water, by Anne Perry. My Early Reviewers book: the latest in Perry's William Monk series. The characters grow increasingly two-dimensional and more representative than human, which is an unfortunate trend I note in many long-running serials. And Perry does go a bit heavy on the coincidental "hero meets old friend for tea, old friend happens to have crucial information which breaks the case" endings, and this book was no exception. But they are cozy bathtime reads nonetheless. 

May you all have someone to step into the wolf role this Halloween, in memory of the big dog who needed no costume.  

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