Now that I'm not near Rowan during the weekdays, I've taken to bringing him into the shower with me. When he was a baby and S wasn't there, I'd set Rowan outside the shower in his bouncer and sing to him from inside. When Rowan got too big for the bouncer, I could still bring him into the bathroom with me; he'd play for a very short time before starting to swat the water inside the toilet or pull open the shower curtain.
For a while, I finished up my showers by filling the bath and calling for S to bring Rowan to me. Now I just sit the boy down in the tub while I shower. This evening while we were doing just that, it hit me: How exquisite it is that we are so together and yet so apart. Closeness, like reading with your spouse or writing with a friend.
I washed my hair, brushed my teeth, and daydreamed. (I know, I know. I don't take short showers, but I do recycle and do a bunch of other things to reduce waste.) Rowan played with his toys (those attached to his body and not). He clapped the stacking cups together, attempted stacking, squeezed the happy-faced bath fauna, and babble-talked whenever the mood struck. When he looked up at me with his wide eyes, I couldn't stop thinking: You are my little angel.
It's not that I don't still like to take a shower alone every now and again. But I also cherish these quiet moments we share, where we are wholly submerged in the now.
Around this time (12-18 months), babies hit the separation anxiety stage. They're realizing that "mommy and me aren't one. We are separate." It's one of the baby milestones, but I don't think it's happening to Rowan all by himself. I wonder if all moms stumble through the same realization with their babies at some point. We are so together, yet so apart.
Mamas, how did you juggle showering with your infants?
Self-Portrait With Cropped Hair by Frida
I have a confession to make. I don't shave. After living abroad I stopped and started epilating. I learned (mistakenly or no) that pretty much only American women shave their legs. Yes, epilating hurts, but the more you do it the less it feels like pain. You never get that five o'clock shadow of spikiness and it lasts for weeks. Well, hair grows in cycles, so epilating every week is best. I think I might be hairier than most, so maybe others can get away with longer intervals.
So did I mention, tweezing hair out by the root in mass quantities hurts? And it especially hurts the first go around when you have lots of hair to remove. When we moved back to the States, I was nearly 8 months pregnant and I'd sold my epilator with its Chilean-style plug. So the leg hair grew. I ordered a new epilator after Rowan was born--using my phone while breastfeeding, which is how I accomplished anything not baby related the first few months.
But the truth is, I've hardly used the thing. The noise scares Rowan, and having him nearby just makes me more tense. Though I find singing really helps alleviate the pain. Anyway, my baby is one now, it's almost spring, and I'm turning over a new leaf. Which is that I intend to spend more of my days with less hair on my body.
Do you shave? Go au naturel? Wax? How often?
Posted by heather on 2/23/2012
I'm thoroughly enjoying my family after hardly seeing them all week. Today we relaxed, ate eggs for breakfast, and went for an afternoon hike where we discovered a grove of cairns and a labyrinth, the first of the wild irises, and rainbow serpentine.
It was a good first week, though I finally experienced the pain of a plugged duct. Oh heavenly ouch! Next week I'll continue to get used to commuting.
Wishing you all a lovely weekend!
recovering from a lovely dinner, game, and wine night with friends strolling the Palace of Fine Arts in grey, windy weather // first shoots of spring
When we got home from San Francisco this evening, I decided to do some laundry. I left a bagful of dirty clothes and our huge container of Costco detergent by the door while I went to grab a sweatshirt to go outside. Can you tell where this is going? Rowan has officially learned how to unscrew caps. And he's long since mastered the skill of tipping stuff over. Now there's a huge puddle of laundry soap pooled beneath some towels in the living room. Thankfully Rowan was just splashing in it and hadn't yet tried to taste it. Oh, and he was still naked because I'd just given him a bath. So I rinsed him in the kitchen sink, which he absolutely loved and which he loathed to leave. Do you have any tips for soaking soap up from the carpet?
Eeps! It's my first day of work. I feel like I haven't done this in forever. I'm more nervous about how I'm going to get there (train changes, shuttle, timing) than anything else. A friend poking fun at me reminded me how I'd traveled another continent and moved abroad mostly by myself. When you put it into perspective, it's silly to get butterflies. But I've been a homebody for so long and fairly rarely alone. Oh the things I admit here. Wish me luck! (:
Wishing you a beautiful week, friends!
the journey: that's a whole lotta hormones to stabilize // reminiscing at six months
I'm sure it's not just me, but during those early months as a first time mom, I just wanted verification that I was doing OK. That the baby was normal. That other moms have the same difficulties. And then you turn a corner, and the hardest part is remembering just how hard it was. OK, sometimes I still wonder what the hell I'm doing, but it's not nearly as intense. Oh, and I'm aging a lot.
If you're a mom, do you remember how long it took you to feel "right" again?
I wrote a full blog last night, Firefox crashed, and none of it saved. It's definitely time for me to change browsers. Sigh la vie.
It's been a rough couple of weeks with a feverish baby, who needed antibiotics and then broke out with a full body rash allergic reaction to said antibiotics. Then I caught the bug. Add teething, familial sleeplessness, and some odd behaviors that can likely be attributed to separation anxiety to the mix. Whew, welcome to toddlerhood!
Monday was my last day of my old job where I worked in from my home office in Rowan's closet. Rowan never took to bottles and I never really had to worry about that and hardly ever had to pump, because I've been able to stay close enough to breastfeed him whenever he wants. I won't miss the low wage, no benefits, or no vacation. But I will miss my boy, working from home and from cafes, and eating lovingly made lunches and snacks from my husband. I will miss my boys.
But missing is good, right? This is a step in the right direction for our family. And I am ever grateful to have been able to spend this past year with Rowan. S is going to stay home with him so we won't have to pay for child care, in all the ways that you pay for child care.
I start my new career job on Monday, so for the rest of this week I'm on staycation. I originally thought that I'd only have four days off in a row, and I was thinking of spending it roadtripping to the snow or someplace pretty. Oh me and wanderlust. Instead we're just chillin'. My to-do list for the week includes purging, primping, lightening. Also playing, hugging, loving--but that's not the kind of stuff to put on a do-to list.
I'm excited for the purge especially. We've had lots of stuff come into our lives over the past year, and not enough exit. I think this causes blockages, obstructing the natural flow of things. Imagine if all you did was inhale with nary an exhale. Well, you'd burst! And that my friends is what I'm on the brink of.
Today you might find me scrubbing the bathtub with my new homemade cleaning solution of vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and baking soda. I polished our teapot and panini machine with it last night. Wondrous! What adventures are you up to?