I’ll be a mom for a long time

by ericakingston

night of 12.29.12

My men are both asleep. I stayed up to paint my nails and watch a little Rules of Engagement. That is funny stuff, right there.

But now my Ben Harper Pandora station is on, with heavy, wonderful doses of Damien Rice. Love that man.

Tomorrow we are heading home. I cannot wait to be in my own house. We will be there for five whole days before we leave for my best friend’s wedding in Mexico.

I’ve been counting down the days to our beach vacation for quite some time. I am so ready to go and be with my husband and our friends. We decided before he was born that we would leave Jack at home.

I had anxiety about this. Quite a bit. But the last month and a half our sweet baby boy has been teething or having tummy troubles or something that made him a grouch during the day and a gremlin throughout the night.

I love my baby. So, so much. But a lady gets worn out. I was tired. I wasn’t getting any sleep because Jack would wake up the second I put him down and he would thrash around restless if I brought him into our bed. One night we were up from midnight until 5 a.m. At 5:09, I crawled into bed and just cried out of sheer frustration. I didn’t know what to do, I couldn’t fix it. Scott just hugged me and told me I did good.

So I put my sights on Mexico, so thrilled to have 10 days of childless relaxation while the baby was safe at home with grandma.

Now, for the past two weeks, that crazy grumpy phase Jack was going through has subsided. And he is back to his sweet, smiley, spit-bubbly self. We still get up once or twice during the night but they are quick feedings and back to bed. He has been saying “RaRa, RaRa” after I tell him to say “mama.” He crawls on me and hugs me and just plainly wants to be by me. He is such a sweet boy.

And I feel bad for being excited to leave.

I read this the other day from a Facebook post from Elizabeth Street:

“My mother said, ‘You’re going to be a mom for a long time. You don’t have to be there every single day'”—Jennifer Garner on separation anxiety

And it gives me peace.

Peace for the times when I want to pull out my hair and drop my kid off at the neighbors. Peace for leaving him at home, nerve-calming for the thoughts of him not remembering me when we get back.

I, and we, are making this all up as we go. You might think you know what kind of a parent you will be, but you don’t. All of this is so universal and yet unexpected at the same time. People have been parenting since the dawn of time and yet not one situation is the same.

So I need to just breath in and let it back out. What will be, will be. And we will all be ok.