Toddler-wearing. It looks as dreamy as it was.

For the first time in weeks, I had a cry/whine free night (until well past his bedtime), and I attribute it all to a little snuggle sesh with mama after work.

See, for some reason I had gotten it into my thick head that Potamus was getting too old and heavy to be carried around all of the time. His whining to be picked up and when I was cooking dinner was grating on my nerves, I want to say “go play with your toys buddy, I’m cooking,” but I realized, in a conversation with a friend, that perhaps Potamus needs some more quality time. And perhaps that quality time is spent being carried or physically close to me, because, after all, he’s away from me all day when I’m working.

Now, it’s not that I’ve been neglecting him, it’s just that I see how independently he can play and know that I want some free time to myself. But mostly I want there to not be whining. So if holding him is going to stop that whining then I’m going to do it. I’m going to do it even if people think I’m spoiling him. Because, he can learn to wait his turn at daycare. And he can learn that I can’t always rescue him (sometimes a lady’s gotta pee without a kid on her lap, people!), but this revelation that I’ve been missing physical contact and snuggles with Boof, that maybe, just maybe, Potamus has been missing simply being close to me and getting to see the world go by.

The Ergo pack, with a baby on my back, seems awkward, so I whipped out the ol’ ring sling again and have been using it to go on evening jaunts with little guy after dinner and bath, but before Boof gets home for bedtime. Yesterday I decided to not wait until our walk. I put him in it from the minute we got home, and with the exception of eating and bathing, we were attached at the hip all night.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE!

There’s something blood-pressure-raising about a toddler scrambling at my ankles and tugging on my pant leg wanting to be held. There was nothing stressful about having him strapped to my hip while making dinner, except trying to be extra mindful of where the pans and knives were so that he didn’t just reach over and pull boiling spaghetti sauce on me. While I didn’t get to sit on the couch reading my awesome crime novel, I was pleased that I was able to make dinner without fuss, and felt like we were really connected all evening.

I can’t hold him all the time. And I don’t think that’s what he wants or needs. But it was nice to anticipate the need for some quality snuggles by using the ring sling, and I think they’ll probably be many more walks around the neighborhood with him hitched to my hip.

 

Moms with Strollers

I used to think I was an introvert, but the more I learn about myself, the more I realize that I am a highly sensitive extrovert, raised in the clannish and isolation-minded Pacific Northwest, with a genetic and environmental disposition toward depression, seasonal depression and anxiety.

So now, as I struggle through postpartum depression, I have had to force myself to break away from all of these forces working against my health and healing. Medication, talking with family, taking daily showers and putting on mascara regardless of whether I am going to sit on the couch all day in sweats or not, and, most recently, meeting other moms.

Let’s be honest now, moms make me nervous. Before Baby Boof was born I was really nervous about having to make mom friends, because I am not necessarily intersted in talking about diaper sizes or wearing matching outfits with my child and pushing them in a pram. Moms can also be a judgy lot, and I am just not interested in trying to live up to some sort of mother-of-the-year-award. But my single and married-without-kids friends just don’t “get it” like moms do, so, with some trepidation, I have branched out to meet some moms.

My first solo venture into this arena was finding a local meetup for moms with babies/toddlers in my area. I figured that an event titled “moms with strollers” wouldn’t be that scary, especially since it was 2 blocks from my house, and worse case scenario I get in a good walk and never go back.

What surprised me was how awesome all of these moms were. While I didn’t connect with all of them at the same level, there were a few I could see myself actually hanging out with in the future. And my sense of humor shined through, which is often not the case in a new or strange place (I’m the girl shoveling food in her face at the snack table at parties). The weather was glorious, seeing the sun after “Winter Blast 2012” that we survived last week, was an added bonus. The combination of sunshine, exercise, and good conversation were so inspiring to my mood, that I found myself happy the rest of the day. Perhaps moms aren’t so scary after all?