|My Beautiful Boys|
(Photo by Matthew Young)
In general, there is a sense of flow in our household these days. The moments of overwhelm are rare and fleeting, and most days, everyone seems to be getting their major needs met. A big improvement comes from seeing a natural rhythm emerge to our days, one that honors Ezra's sleep needs but doesn't tie us to the house for both morning and afternoon. There are still those days when I wake my poor sleeping baby multiple times in order to get brother from school or to make some other non-negotiable appointment and I really hate waking a sleeping baby. Thankfully, Ezra tolerates these interruptions very well, a required trait for the Second Brother.
And can I gush for a moment? Ezra is the giggliest, squeezable, kissable baby in the world right now. When I hold him, he's got enough of a monkey grip to almost hug me back. He lights up and wiggles his full body in joy when I walk in the room (the flip side of this is that he fusses when I leave the room now). Sooo close to crawling but beautifully immobile, this is such a great stage.
And my other sweet boy has mellowed his ways of late, asking the most curious questions ("Can a 747 airplane cross the ocean? Can a 22137 plane cross, too?") and alternating supremely caring behaviors with "You're the baddest mama ever" angry outbursts, but you know?- I'm getting used to the ups and downs and can ride through the turbulence with something approaching grace. It helps that my elder boy has a pretty fantastic sense of humor-if we can access that during the heated moments, they tend to lose their steam pretty quickly.
Noah and I are reading and listening to more classic literature. I'm so done with nonsense and rhyme - i.e "Olivia the Pig," Dr. Seuss and an overview of earth movers and all their functions (gouge my eyes out with a spoon and big thanks! to Grandma Joy! who gave it to him!). Bring on the rich stuff: (very grim) Grimm Brothers and Aesop's Fables! Seeing Noah's interest in pre-reading skills (exploring words that rhyme and the fact that the word over a door spells "E-X-I-T," just two examples) is inspiring me to be more thoughtful of my role as his "first teacher." What a gift to learn to read! I'm excited to encourage him down the path of literacy because I derive such joy from reading.
I am swapping Noah playdates with another friend on an informal basis for now, and it's going very well. As in, N. and E. played beautifully together for 3 hours yesterday while the baby slept and I made four dozen pumpkin muffins for an equinox celebration (!). Somedays, parenting seems downright easy.
I've changed my work schedule to get home before bedtime on weeknights. I'm sacrificing Sunday afternoons to make it happen but this change is an important one. Sometimes I cling to an old concept that no longer serves me - like, the idea of weekends as a relaxing break from the rigors of the week. Well, aren't I lucky to be able to work part time and flexible hours while caring for young children? Yes, I am; and the "cost" to that is working evenings and weekends. Rather than feel sorry for myself, I'm choosing to be grateful for this opportunity to earn money and be present to our children during these early years.
I'm being more mindful to fill my cup with the activities that feed my body and soul - establishing Wed and Sunday as my yoga class days, with additional home practices as I can make them. And you know?, if I'm really creative and ambitious in taking advantage of the odd, unexpectedly open 30 minutes here and there, I can practice 4-5 times a week. I've also committed (for now) to the Ashtanga style of yoga, actually memorizing the sequence and practicing the traditional Mysore (unled) style on Sundays. I'm enjoying the schoolgirl rush of learning something new and concrete.
It's a cliche, and probably a trademarked one at that, but Life is (Damn!) Good right now.