Time flies

Dear Little One,

You are  11 months old today. I can hardly believe that in a month you will have been mine for a year. The time has flown by and there hasn’t been enough time spent with you. I know that for your first 6 months I was with you every day but the last 5 months while I’ve been working have been so hard on me. I feel like I miss so much. There is so much to be done and life that has to be lived when I wish I could just slow down time in order to get more time with you. You are such a big boy now with places to go and toys to play with; I miss the days where you would just be content to sit with me and sleep on me for hours at a time. I know you have to grow and to learn, but each day you become more independent and need me less. I’m not ready for that.

Last night you had a hard time going to bed (which is not unusual these days). So I held you and sung to you and cuddled you as you laid on my shoulder. And my heart was breaking knowing that this time with you is so precious but so limited. And I can’t get enough of it. Working takes me away from your precious face and your sweet cuddles and kisses and I feel those slipping away from me every day I’m away from you. I’m jealous of your Auntie who gets to spend her days with you. I worry sometimes you prefer her because she is with you more. This isn’t what I envisioned growing up when I imagined myself as a mommy. Even through college I always said I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. I want to raise you. I want to be the one to kiss your boo-boos and see your milestones first.

I pray one day I will be able to stay home with you more. I’m so blessed I was able to spend so much time with you when you came home from the hospital. I missed out so much that being able to be with you then was a dream.

So, little one, try to not do so much growing and changing while I’m away. Save those first words and events for when I’m with you. Save your kisses and snuggles for me. Look for me and continue to be excited for me when I get home. Prefer me over everyone else sometimes (and not just when it comes to milks). And as you get older, remember I love you with all my heart and mommies need their babies for much longer than babies need their mommies.

I love you my sweet one. I will never stop loving you. I just wish you didn’t have to grow so fast.

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A day in the life

5:45am: Sister brings a wiggly fussy Baby G to my room. It’s the second time he’s woken up and has (once again) bumped his head on the rails of the crib after he’s flipped himself over. Notice I didn’t say rolled. He doesn’t roll. He flings.

5:45am – 7am: Baby G sleep nurses, wakes up realizing he only got half his milks and wants the other side. I doze off and on as he’s nursing. {The morning sleep nursing cuddles are sweet and wonderful and some of my favorite times with him but they kill my back. His little hands dance as he nurses, touching my chest, neck or face, or playing with the covers. His movements are soft and fluttery and precious.}

7am: Transfer Baby G to his pack n play and go back to sleep. Hope Baby G sleeps in pack n play.

8:45am: Drag self out of bed and shower. Get dressed and wake up Baby G. {I love waking him up. It takes him a minute to come around but then he’ll just smile and look at me like I’m the best thing he’s ever seen. It doesn’t matter how tired you are, that face is worth everything.}

9:00am: Take Baby G upstairs to get ready. Clean up the barf he just puked on the floor on the way up. Turn on the hot water, lay him in his crib, and wait approximately 37 years for the hot water to come from China. Wet washcloth and lay Baby G on changing pad. Wipe down his sweet happy little face and pull off his PJs. Change an incredibly boodgy diaper and sing “Good Morning to You” and “The Good Morning Song” as he gets dressed. Give him a million kisses because he’s so dang cute you can’t help yourself. {I also love this part of the day. He loves it when we sing and he gets so happy and his little legs and arms just have to jump all around because he’s so excited. This morning he was “talking” to me which is soooo sweet and just melts my heart.}

9:20am: Nurse Baby G while putting on makeup. Try not to poke self in eye while he does his best to dislodge the makeup tray from my hand. Relatch him 14 times because he’s being too nosy to nurse. Remove my shirt from his mouth as he has decided since he managed to get a handful of it he must eat it. Switch him to the left side where he nurses without interruption. {Apparently the right side is more of an appetizer of sorts because he nurses much better on the left side. Which is funny because generally the right side produces more. }

9:45am: Give Baby G one last kiss before he is whisked off to church, leaving me alone in the house to finish getting ready.

10:30am: Arrive at the job.

10:30am – 12:30pm: Twiddle thumbs. Look busy. Check phone for texts. Help customer find something they are either already looking at or are on the opposite side of the store from. Miss Baby G.

12:30pm: Pump. Bleah.

12:30-3:00pm: Pretty much a repeat of 10:30-12:30. Throw in someone’s bratty kid who keeps messing with the stuff on my desk. Help customers in every department but mine.

3:00pm: Eat lunch and pump. Go to Michaels and buy stuff.

5:30pm: Pump again.

5:30pm – 7:30pm: Twiddle thumbs. Look busy. Check phone every 10 minutes to see if it’s 7:30 yet.

7:28pm: Clock out and go home. {Yay!} Try not to speed.

7:45pm: Run inside, change into comfy pants and shirt, settle into couch corner and feed Baby G. Relatch him 32 times because he keeps pulling off to smile at me. Can’t get frustrated with him because he’s too dang cute and he is so happy to see me {heart sings with joy}. Burp him and get barfed on at least once because he always turns his head away from the burp cloth at the last minute.

8:00pm: Eat dinner while holding Baby G because he is allergic to the floor and cannot be put down. Stop eating and stand up because the couch is still apparently too close to the floor (which is lava) and try to sneak sitting down because I’m starving and my food is getting cold. Finally get to eat properly once Auntie Nanny (also known as Sister) is done eating and gets up to walk with him.

9:00: Bath time! Take Baby G upstairs, turn on water, and go to changing pad to get undressed. Pick out jammies and get diaper ready for when he gets out. Auntie Nanny fills tub for us once the hot water has arrived from Timbuktu. Quickly take naked baby from room to tub so we don’t get peed (or pooped) on. Bathtime commences with lots of splashing and flailing of arms and legs. {Bathtime is a magical wonderful time and supercedes all other ailments. Hungry? Doesn’t matter, it’s bathtime! Tired? Doesn’t matter, it’s bathtime! Got an upset tummy? Doesn’t matter, just poop in the tub!} Let cutest naked baby on the planet play for a bit then wash him up, avoiding letting him eat the soapy washcloth or flail himself under the water. Lastly wash and rinse his fuzzy bird hair and load him into one of several adorable towels. Run to bedroom to dry off and get dressed in jammies. Reposition diaper 12 times as he is doing he best impression of an octopus and then fight to get his arms in his sleeves as he is intent on eating them. Zip/snap him up and it’s milky time! {Side note: Bathtime is always followed by milky time. If he had milk immediately prior to bathtime, milky time still immediately follows. This is the event succession people and it cannot be messed with. He knows. So we try to do bathtime as close to the next milky time so that he doesn’t nurse for two minutes then pass out without getting a full feeding. Because then he’ll just wake up 45 minutes later and want to eat.}

9:30pm: Milky time!! Nurse Baby G and then attempt to burp him. Read him a bedtime story (this is a new thing) and then get bedtime kisses and head up to bed. Turn on music thing (it belongs to his pack n play and does not make beautiful music but he likes it) and lay him in bed. Pat his bottom until he settles.

10:30pm: Baby G wakes up crying (screaming). Wait 3 minutes to see if he will settle. If not, go upstairs and pat his bottom (and turn music back on if it’s shut off) until he settles. Hope he stays asleep this time.

1:00am: Head to bed, overtired, because I stayed up playing on the computer and watching Netflix too long.

2:40am: Wake up to Baby G crying through the monitor. Husband gets up to go pat him back to sleep.

4:30a: Wake up to Baby G crying through the monitor. Stagger upstairs and attempt to pat him back to sleep. Stifle laughter as his little legs kick the mattress as if he’s throwing a temper tantrum. Pick him up and bounce him, sing to him, pat him. Nothing. Sit down on floor and nurse him as last resort. {Requires no energy, thought process, or coordination.} Put him back in bed and turn on white noise.

5:00am: Stagger back into bed.

8:30am: Husband brings a wiggly fussy Baby G to me to nurse.

 

Obviously this is just a guideline of some of our days. A lot depends on what shift I work and how fussy G is through the night. Some things don’t change though. I always nurse him in bed in the mornings. I always pump three times a day at work. I always clock out 2 minutes or so before my shift ends because I’m chomping at the bit to get home. I almost always go to Michaels on lunch. Sometimes Target. Bathtime is always followed by milky time. At some point in every day G realizes he is going to get eaten by the floor and screams until you stand up with him. It’s really just the times that change.

I feel a little sick

So tomorrow is my first full day away from Baby G. Today I was away for 5 hours.

I didn’t die.

I didn’t cry.

Hey, that rhymes!

I went in yesterday at 8am to talk about the “options.” I use that term loosely because it turned out there weren’t options, just a decision. Please keep in mind that is probably the earliest I’ve gotten up (without going back to bed) in months. MONTHS. Almost 6 of them. I didn’t sleep well the night before because I was so nervous. And nauseous. Long story short is they were trying to bring me back in as a supervisor. Which I didn’t want. And the department(s) they wanted to give me were a hellacious mess 6 months ago before I left. I have it on good authority they aren’t much better. So again. Don’t. Want.

I hadn’t wanted to be a supervisor for awhile. But it got especially bad after I got moved last November. You remember. It was the catalyst that started my trek down the deep dark hole I fell into and couldn’t get out of. So I had already been toying with the decision to step down. So now it’s sink or swim. I explained that I wasn’t interested in that life anymore. Earlier mornings and later nights. A lot more responsibility and a lot more headache.

Tomorrow I go in again at 8. I will work until 5. I’m not looking forward to the day or the 8am meeting to discuss my fate. And my pay cut. I don’t like surprises and I hate confrontations. I’m emotional and I don’t want to be put on the spot.

A friend of mine today said she doesn’t think she could be a stay at home mom. That she’d need a few days a week to be around adults. I thought about this a lot today. And I’ve decided I could do it. I’ve been home for very close to six months. I haven’t missed working one bit. I’ve missed my friends but I don’t miss being away from the house. Away from my son. Some people need adult time. Outside-the-home productive time. I don’t think I do. I’d be content being a home-maker. Maybe I’d change my mind down the road but right now I’d be happy to stay home.

So tomorrow I find out what my new job will be. I’m praying God will help it be whats best for my family. And maybe one day I will be able to go part-time. Or maybe we’ll win the lottery. Yeah… I like that idea best.

The road to success is paved with rocks, potholes, and shards of glass. And you’re barefoot.

I hate my job. I really really really hate my job. And I haven’t even been there in almost 6 months. And technically, I don’t even know what my job IS anymore since my last position has been filled. And apparently, no one wants to talk to me about it.

For the last week I have been trying to get someone there to talk to me about my return to work. This obviously hasn’t worked out so well for me as tomorrow was supposed to be my first day back and I won’t be working. I won’t say I’m terribly disappointed to not be going back to work tomorrow. I’ve gotten a “free” week with Baby G and I’m excited about it. What I’m not excited about is the prospect of calling up once again to try to get someone to tell me what the heck is going on.

Let’s back up. Once Baby G came early I knew that 12 weeks off work wasn’t going to be enough with a baby in the NICU. He came home after 6 weeks but that only left 6 weeks of my maternity leave. Six weeks wasn’t enough with my brand new baby. It wasn’t enough and it wasn’t fair. Plus, my sister (the Nanny-Auntie) wasn’t coming until mid-July. So there was the question of what to do with Baby G in the meantime. I wasn’t keen on putting him in daycare (and his Ped didn’t recommend it) or letting someone else watch him in the meantime so I took an extended leave to stay home with him until she could get here. Then there was the question of my job. FMLA only protects your job for 12 weeks. Since I was going to be out quite a bit longer than that I went to talk to my Store Manager. She said my job would be there when I got back and I should be able to keep my same position. I never wanted that stupid position to begin with but whatever. So fast forward a few weeks. I had been praying for a better situation at work. No one is happy there and we needed a change. So I prayed for a change. Soon after I talked to the SM, the entire management staff got removed. Enter brand-new-no-idea-who-I-am management. Not sure if this is the right change or not, but I don’t remember if I specified a good change or not. **Note to self: Be a little more specific in prayers.**

Here’s the problem. Because they could (the newbies hadn’t, after all, been the ones to promise my job to stay), they released my position and filled it. Then, when I came in to talk to them about returning and tried to figure out what I was going to do when I got back they pretty much told me they couldn’t talk to me and things would be decided when I returned. Really? I’m not stupid. You’re not going to give me a random schedule and then decide what my job will be AFTER I get back. You will have decided my fate without giving me any say in the matter and I’ll just get to hear about it when I get back. Thanks.

So back to my current predicament. For the last week I’ve been trying to get some answers. ANY answers. All I’m getting is ignored. I have no idea what my job will be or what schedule I’ll be working. How do I prepare for going back to work without knowing what I will be doing or when I will be working? How do you, as a management staff, not understand that at this point, without ever working with you, I already have a bad taste in my mouth regarding you. How do you, in good conscience, string someone along about coming back to work?

So now I’m sitting here, dreading tomorrow, and feeling slightly ill. I hate this game. It’s already hard enough on me that I have to go back to work. Why does it have to be made harder? I don’t want extra responsibility. I don’t want notoriety. I just want to get a paycheck and then come home to my family. I have no intentions of moving up within the company. EVER. For the first time in my life I just want to be mediocre. I don’t want to stand out. I don’t want to shine.

I just want to go to work, give them my 8 hours, and then come home. Nothing more. Oh yeah, and I want my darn schedule.

4 More Days

I only have 4 more days with my baby before everything changes. Before we head to FL to see my family and pick up my little sister. Before we spend some time getting her used to caring for Baby G. Before I go back to work.

I know that I have 4 weeks left. I know that. But only 4 days of that are just mine. I don’t have to share him, or leave him, or let him go.

I’m scared. I don’t know if I can do it. I don’t know if I can get in my car that morning and drive away from him. I know I sound dramatic. I know women everywhere have to work and leave their sweet babies with someone else. I know they survive. But this is my first baby. I’ve been with him every day for almost 5 months.

Why does it feel so bad? He’ll still be my baby. He’ll still be there when I get home. But I’ll miss out on so much. Will I be there for his first word? When he starts to crawl? His first step? I’m going to miss him so much everyday.

So these 4 day I’m going to hold him a little longer and play with him a little more. I still have to pack and do some cleaning before we leave, but if I have to wait until he’s in bed at night to do that then I will. Because I don’t want to regret anything. I don’t want to regret not picking him up. And I don’t want to regret folding that extra load of laundry. And I know I’m still going to have time with him. I know that after my 4 days I’ll still have over 3 weeks left. But it doesn’t feel that way. Right now it feels like these 4 days are the only thing I have left.