Why is it that when I’m in the thick of it – “it” being parenting: (nearly) full-time at-home parenting – I have nothing to say about it? Why is that when I spend all day being a mom I can’t seem to think about being a mom. When people ask how we’re doing, almost one month after Oliver’s arrival, I say “We’re well. Yes. We are.” And (although now reading my response it sounds more like trying to convince everyone that we’re well rather than actually being well) I generally believe it. You can usually see the living room floor, I have kept the family in clean clothes, I’ve not missed paying any bills, I’ve managed to spend some time each day working, and only once in the last two weeks (since my parents left) have we had to eat out because I couldn’t get a meal on the table.
And yet, it just doesn’t quite seem like enough- this “just doing, not thinking” strategy. Each day, Tim gets up and, after getting Eleanor dressed and himself showered, dressed, and fed, he heads to the library where he spends all day – a full 8 hours – working on his dissertation or preparing job applications; writing and thinking and thinking and writing. (And, I might add, he’s been remarkably productive (on the dissertation) and successful (on the job applications).) Then he comes home to me, who has spent the day puttering around with this or that, doing the laundry, breastfeeding, prepping for dinner. (read: worlds away from the way he’s spent his day.) Certainly there is space in my day for thinking, I guess there just hasn’t been energy for it. The thing is that now I can see that this needs to change: I have made myself very available for the baby (I know, I know…that’s what I’m supposed to do), but I also need to make a little more room for my husband. And I need to make room for me. I do.
I’m hoping that my need to spend more time aware of what I’m doing means that I will write more (note the word “hoping”). In the meantime, I’ll provide some images from the last four weeks.