As I prepare to move in a few weeks and attempt to parent and be a wife on top of that, I’m going to be rerunning a few older posts and cutting back to three posts a week (likely one old, one new, one new recipe). Here’s one I wrote in September during an especially trying time.
I remember turning into the aisle at Wal-Mart just to recall that I had forgotten the diaper bag.
It was the first time I had ever left the house alone with my tiny baby girl. I quickly found that a carseat takes up most of the space in a shopping cart.
My heart pounded just trying to get the fragile girl into the carseat, outfitted properly, in and out of the car. Would her feet be cold? Would she catch germs at Wal-Mart? Each inch of her precious body, so newly out of mine. I trembled from fear and the new bite of November.
It’s a flash in my mind: that moment when I realized I had everything — my purse, the baby, a shopping list — except that vital brown-and-pink bag with her toilette.
I’ve never scurried through a store quite so quickly, praying that nothing would be expelled from a tiny bottom.
Nothing did, and I was safe. But it didn’t take long to ride the wave of insecurity about my capability as a parent.
She screams and fights and stomps one foot outside the door when I say, “… if you come out of that room.” The child who is praised as polite and sweet as sugar is nothing like the one I face alone in our home.
I hate tantrums.
I look inside, trying to squeeze out the place in my heart that is to blame for all of this. Why oh why? What did I do to make her like this, so vehemently anti-sleep? What could we change?
And why doesn’t anyone else ever talk about their kids doing this?
I feel isolated, alone, in a bubble filled with fake cries, screaming, requests for more water more food more bunnies more blankets.
And heaven help us all if we forget to put on her socks.
I wonder if someday this will all make sense. If I’ll ever be able to stand on my own parenting feet without feeling the need to beg advice from anyone who will listen. Does it improve as they age, little casks of spirit ripening to the perfect vintage dose of confidence?
I hope so.