Monday, August 4, 2008

Can I Really DO This?

Oscar's been having a hard time recovering from jet lag. He's had a hard time falling and staying asleep the past several nights, although it's getting better. It's really nothing earth-shattering; he's still a baby, after all.

Two or three nights ago, he was wailing in his crib sometime after 9PM, refusing to sleep. Nelson went up to lay down with him, and that did not help at all. So I went up to lay down with him. Which also did not work at all.

When Little Man saw me, he was overjoyed, shrieking, laughing, crawling straight towards me. He proceeded to laugh and poke and kiss me for the next 30 minutes. And, I'm not going to lie, I enjoyed it. It was fun. Oscar is funny and sweet and I cherish these moments with him, although they do get old after an hour or so.

I finally got out of bed, rocked him for a minute, and put him in his crib. He promptly fell asleep. It seems he just needed a little more "Mommy Time" before he was ready to sack out.

And, again, nothing earth-shattering here. Even though he typically sleeps through the night, I know we have several more years of occasional sleep fights and night wakings. This is just part of parenthood and I know that.

But my mind flashed forward five months, when I have a newborn constantly attached to my boob, am suffering from extreme sleep deprivation and PPD, have not showered or eaten a decent meal in a week, my husband is back to work full-time and my mom has headed back home to South Carolina. What happens then?

What happens when my then 18-month-old wakes with nightmares and I'm nursing my infant on what I'm sure will be ravaged nipples for the third time that night? What happens when he wants me to read him a book or play with his little people and I don't have a free hand? When he's throwing a poop-filled diaper across the room when I doze off for the briefest of seconds? What about when he just wants to sit on my always filled lap or snuggle in my newborn-filled arms?

I work so hard every day to be a good enough mom for Oscar. To play with him enough, to hug and kiss him enough, to laugh with him and tickle him enough. Being a mom is a good gig, don't get me wrong, but it's tough to constantly give, give, give of yourself all day. Exhausting, even.

How am I going to be able to still be a good and attentive mom to Oscar when I know for at least three months I'll be too tired to think, let alone see, straight? When the arms and lap that have belonged to only to him for the last 17 months suddenly have to be shared? When my every waking moment can no longer be devoted to him?

I keep telling myself all this will work itself out. We are hardly the first family to add a second child to our brood. But I still can't envision how I'm going to manage, how it's all going to work.

1 comment:

Mike said...

I hear you...we have one and our lives changed big time. The hardest thing is projecting to your kids that you don't have your own stuff going on, and always appearing to be "Super Parent." You want to say, "Listen, I've got crap going on myself!" but a kid doesn't get that. We'll make it somehow!