parenthood: chapter 3
last month keith and I were much relieved when my parents came to visit. it had been two months since they had seen their grandson and they did not let their short visit go to waste. Keith and I had been struggling to get any decent sleep and had agreed to take on full night's while the other attempted to get eight hours of sleep. it worked for Keith, but I still had to get up every three hours to pump on my "night off".
i intently watched my mum as she played, fed, and soothed our son. she wasn't phased by his screams or cries and in fact he seemed more contented the whole time they were there. we tried our best to convince them to just move here, but in the end they left us and our boy, alone.
nights were good for about a week until suddenly we found ourselves waking up every hour or two feed or burp or change or console. During the day, I was so anxious for him to get his naps in that I held him while remaining on the couch for hours without food or water. Iwound up with the most splitting migraine that caused me to throw up minutes after nursing. the sleepless nights snd stressful days were taking their toll. Especially with me being all alone in the house with a restless baby. I had to admit I was missing my family.
It takes a village.
I, however, am notorious for not asking for help, mostly because I have been let down by good and bad people. I didn't have the stamina to be let down again and was determined to do everything myself.
A friend from college (shot out to XA alumni who are the most hospital people I have ever known)mreached out to me a few weeks ago and offered to babysit while i went and did something for myself. I will be honest and say i was skeptical that she would be able to manage my son, who is sometimes a bit extra. Not to mention she lived more than two hours away and still needed to find a babysitter for her son. But two weeks later she was at my doorstep to watch our son for two days while keith and i went on a date the first night and i went and worked on some designs i had been aching to get started on. Her gesture lead me to begin the process of reaching out to safe people, still scared of rejection. Still scared of anyone caring for my son who wasn’t family.
i was pleasantly surprised and blessed. I also think it helps that this boy is especially adorable.
It was invigorating just being able to talk to adults and take care of myself. I even found myself braving the outside world with baby in hand, not as intimidated by the thought of him throwing a fit in his carseat. No longer am i dreading the long week ahead of me as being one giant day. Instead, i miss my son more when i am away and enjoy him even more when it is just the two of us. I think that is what a village is meant to do, meant to be. And i am just so grateful that all my boy is being filled with right now is love.
For those of you who live far from immediate family, what does your village consist of?