Hard to believe it’s only been 2 months since Henry was born. What? You thought I meant to say, “I can’t believe it’s already 2 months!” Nope. That’s not now newborn time works.
With all the feedings, diaper changes, cries-that-you-really-hope-meant-that-he-had-gas-because-otherwise-you-have-no-idea-what-was-wrong, lack of consistent sleep, and changes to your body and sense of self, 2 months seems like a surprisingly long amount of time for this new mom.
I’m takin’ it back!
One of the hardest things for me about pregnancy and the 2 months postpartum has been changes in my sense of self. I don’t want to say that I’ve become the most boring person alive, because that’s not true. I have an adorable kid, and any thought that includes the superlative adjective “most” is almost certainly irrational. But outside of being a new mommy who is handling MS and seizures, I haven’t had a lot of energy to devote to doing the things that made me feel like myself.
I’m here to pump *clap* ME up!
The first thing I’m addressing is my activity level. I spend entirely too much time sitting on the couch surfing social media — and let’s face it, Facebook can be crazy depressing, even when everybody’s happy about something. (Take, for example, the legalization of gay marriage and the resulting celebratory bashing of bigots.) ANYWAY. There came a time, around 5 or 6 months into the pregnancy, where going to the gym every day after Adam got home from work stopped being a thing… and shortly thereafter, I stopped trying to work out at all. I reverted to being the full-time couch potato that I was back when I was having seizures all the time. Sinking back into the fluffy comfort of the couch and company of other folks who were as cranky as I was (if not moreso), was far too easy. Well, as of today, I’m allowed to work out again, and I’m pretty damn stoked about it.
For me (and most human beings), engaging in some form of physical activity is necessary to having good mental health. When I work out, even for 10 minutes, I feel better about who I am as a person. I feel less lazy, more attractive, less hopeless, and more in control of my life. So, today, I’m determined to walk a mile with Henry. I’ve suggested to Adam that when we take the dog for his afternoon walk, we do it all together and take a longer walk than usual.
I’m also looking online for free pilates and yoga workouts, since I also want to stretch and tone. Youtube is filled with them. The tough part, for me, is separating the wheat from the chaff and finding a routine that I actually want to do. So, if you have a routine online that you love, I’d be stoked to hear about it.
Turning Back On The Tap.
A few years ago, I had memorable conversation with my friend Mike, a guy who actually makes a living as a composer. (It’s true! There are actually people out there who can do that! Just not many.) I was in law school at the time, and had let all of my musical endeavors fall by the wayside in favor of spending almost all of my free time blogging on LiveJournal, learning all there is to know about BDSM, dating, and working out. Considering how busy I was studying during law school, I was actually living a reasonably well-rounded life, but without regular music practice, I felt like I had abandoned a big part of my identity.
Mike told me about this theory with regard to the practice of music: It’s just like getting clean water out of plumbing that has rusty pipes. You’ve got to turn it on and let the water run for a while. At first, the water is gonna be brown and gunky, but eventually, you’ll get clean water. The same thing’s true for the practice of music. You’re gonna suck for a while. It’s gonna be hard for you to hear yourself, but you gotta keep practicing. Eventually, you’ll sound like yourself again.
With Henry’s arrival, I’ve been singing much more — every night, in fact. And, I find myself struggling not to harshly judge myself. I often forget lyrics. I wonder if my tone is okay. I wonder if I’m singing the right songs. (I never sing traditional lullabyes.) I wonder if the songs sound weird without their normal background accompaniment. I wonder if the kid actually likes being sung to or if I’m torturing him by singing the same things over and over again. And I wonder why I’m not writing lullabyes just for him.
So, my goal for this week is to write Henry a song and sing it to him.
And Everything Else
Eventually, I’m hoping to also get back to creating the card games I was working on (“Flavor Friends” and “Bake!”) and write some children’s books, but I don’t want to self-sabotage by overloading myself. I’ve still got a 2 month old to care for, medical bills to sort out (Thanks for your incompetence, Humana!), a house that we’re trying to buy, and all the rest of the responsibilities that go along with being a housewife.
One step at a time… starting with feeding the little one.