Wednesday, December 7, 2005


I didn't know that becoming a parent would change me so dramatically. Everyone said that it would, but my basic arrogance said "Nah, that's for other people." And in some ways, I'm a lot the same. But when it comes to Nate, all bets are off.

I realized the other day that if I keep things going the way they are, Nate may never know what a terribly impatient person I am. With him, I'm different. I've been tired, and sometimes frustrated, but I've never let him see it. That's so huge for me.

I used to be so disdainful of parents who can't stick to their guns when it comes to discipline, or letting kids cry-it-out. Now I totally get it. It's going to be so hard not to cave with him. I can barely stand to let him kvetch in his crib for a whole minute without heading in to get him. I'm getting better, but it's tough! With Eliza, I had no problem letting her cry in her crib if she was fighting her nap. With Nate, wow.

The "switch" that they say gets thrown when your child is born is a fact for me.

I used to be so anal about my schedule that if something interrupted it, even if it was a GOOD interruption, I would be irritated. For example: my plan for the day was to go to the store to get something for Mom, and then drive it to my sister's house. And then my Mom calls as I'm leaving, and says that she doesn't need whatever I was heading out to get. THIS WOULD MAKE ME MAD. Why? Ask my funky brain. It's got a lot of issues.

My family learned to call and suggest a change, and then hang up and let me think it over for 10 minutes. I could bring myself around to the new plan, but not without getting testy and stubborn for a while.

Now I'm as footloose and fancy-free as anyone. I take Nate upstairs with me to work on straightening his room or mine, and lay him somewhere he can look around. I get about 2 t-shirts folded, and he starts complaining. What do I do? I just STOP CLEANING, and go play with him for a few minutes. Then I start cleaning again.

Did you know this could be done? You can just STOP? Right after you started? It's crazy! A chore can be done in small bursts, instead of all at once? Whatchutalkin'about?! And sometimes, get this - sometimes I don't finish cleaning up! At all! I have to switch to making dinner or doing my eBay stuff, and I just work on it another time.

I'm making light, but this is a monumental shift for me. I didn't know I was capable of it. I never have been before.

So this is another bonus that Nate's brought to my life. Now, if he could just get me to stop craving brownies...

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