Wednesday, January 9, 2013

My New Normal

I followed a very set schedule pre-Edith and pre-pregnancy. Now that Edith is seven weeks old, we have a routine that couldn't have changed more.

Here's the difference, then and now:


Then: Up at 8 a.m. Showered, and then ate breakfast while getting ready for work. Out the door at 8:40 -- 8:50 at the latest -- and stepped off the subway a few blocks from work shortly before 9:30.

Now: Up when Edith starts crying, generally between 8 and 9 a.m. Change diaper, then immediately feed her. Then I aim to get her to do a little tummy time on a quilt on the floor -- that generally allows me 5, 10 minutes tops to scarf down some cereal before she gets extremely annoyed with being on her belly.

When she's calm and sleepy, I'll strap her in the stroller, roll her near the bathroom and take a shower. Pandora is my friend here: some classical music and the lull of the shower will keep her asleep the whole time. Generally I can roll her back to the living room and she'll stay asleep for even a bit longer.


Then: Work, work, work until I took my lunch break, usually around 3 or 3:30 p.m. Left the office sometime between 6 and 7, arrived home about an hour later.

Now: Another feeding around noon, then Edith takes her longest single nap of the day -- usually at least 2 hours. I get a leisurely lunch while watching a bit of TV. After eating, I'll try to check off as much on my to-do list as possible (like writing a blog post!).

Of course I'll feed her several times throughout the afternoon; in between, we'll read books, do a little tummy time, play and sing, and she'll catnap. When Paul gets home -- the time varies -- he generally takes over baby duties for an hour or two.


Then: Even though I read on the subway to and from work, I'd usually read a bit more each night. Once every week or two I'd stop at the library after work. The rest of the evening would be filled with general errands and work around the house before supper, usually about 9 p.m., and TV.

Now: I read while she's feeding, so my book time is spread throughout the day. Once in a while I'll get out of the house by myself when Paul gets home, even if it's only for a few minutes and to do something he really could do on his way home -- like mailing some letters or buying a bunch of bananas at a bodega. Or I might be gone for an hour and walk to the library (although Edith and I have done this during the day, too).

If it's bath night for Edith, that'll usually happen around 7. One last feeding. We aim for her to be in bed around 8:30. If she disagrees, however, it will be later, of course. Supper after she sleeps, always.


Then: Eight hours of uninterrupted sleep, sometimes more.

Now: Usually between one and three wake-up calls per night. The times vary, but lately I'll almost always get at least one stretch of sleep that lasts more than three hours, and sometimes more than four. Could be worse.

Overall ...

Do things always go according to plan? Of course not. Am I doing things "right"? I have no idea.

Since Edith was born, I've learned the difference between a schedule and a routine. A schedule is more rigid, and you have a better idea of what will be done when. A routine is more about the order things are done in. We have a general routine now, but the list-maker in me can't wait until Edith is old enough for a schedule!

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