I used to do night shifts as a home support worker. 10 pm to 6 am I would hang out in a living room and do homework and watch movies. Most of all try to stay awake for the one moment when my client with Dementia might decide to start wandering. It rarely happened. At 6 am I would drive home and crawl into bed for 6-8 hours of non stop sleep. Oh those were the days.. lol
Last night my six week old daughter gave me the gift of sleeping really well. A four hour stretch, a three hour stretch, two hour stretch… 9 hours total!
Tonight is the opposite.. sleep? What is sleep? I just want to eat! At least when we’re in bed I can doze without fear of her running away.
Day and night have become one for me. Even on a good night there are feedings.
I am trying to think of a metaphor or profound insight to weave in…. lol
Maybe the verse “If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will find it” (Matthew 16:25 NLT).
One of the greatest privileges and responsibilities that God can give us is to take care of children but you have to give up your life… at least for a while. Those fancy dinner dates, a full night of sleep, time to do your hair nicely, cuddles with hubby.. a good babysitter can allow for these occasionally. 😊
My teaching career, badminton lessons, piano lessons…
But as I look at my daughter’s face, I find life.
My day may now be 24 hours or at least close to it some days. One day I will tell my adult daughter all about it on the phone and tell her how much I miss her.
This post won’t get the usual amount of traffic because I am taking a break from Facebook, my number one blog sharing source. When a person spends a lot of time sitting down like now in my life, Facebook can consume everything and eliminate any other activity, including precious sleep when the baby is sleeping or looking at her face instead of the photos of others. I don’t know how long the break will be… we’ll see. Feel free to share the link for me!
I have had a fair bit of anxiety concerning best care practice for babies. There is a plethora of studies, opinions and anecdotes, cultural traditions etc… Through it all, I am trying to listen to my baby and listen to what she needs. If she had her way entirely she would never have her diaper changed (she hates it) or at least have it magically changed without taking her clothes off, and she would never be put down ever. I can’t fulfill all of her wants and no one can, which she will find out soon enough. I am learning to find out what she needs: a lot more cuddles than I ever anticipated, a lot more milk than I ever anticipated, a lot of sleep and safe places and safe people to go to when mommy can’t hold her. Some fresh air and sunshine, interesting sights and sounds and that’s about it. Sounds so simple and yet it is so easy to get stressed out and do endless research, comparing and contrasting “expert” articles, commiserating on Facebook, losing sleep not because of the baby but because of thinking about stroller brands (we spent literally hours researching strollers and then bought one that we didn’t research and now it sits in the living room while Elaina goes out with me in the carrier) or whether I am destroying my child’s life by holding her too much or not enough.
It is these times that I hear the whisper in my ear “Be still and know that I am God”. God created babies, Jesus was a baby. I can trust my Shepherd to give me wisdom to seek out the pearls that are in books, articles and people’s stories, I have learned a lot. I can also trust to know when to breathe, relax and rejoice that I have a daughter who is alive, healthy and, most often, happy.
Thank you for keeping me company in these wee hours. Elaina is now asleep and maybe I will join her.