This morning I felt her first tooth coming up - a little, razor sharp tooth poking through her gums. I instantly became excited. Development of any kind sparks such intense excitement for a new mom. Possibly any mom - I suppose I won't know this until round two.

Much about my life has changed since having a baby. For starters, I no longer work outside of the home. This is, while wonderful and exactly what I want, such a shift in who I am. There isn't mental challenge in the same way. There IS mental challenge. It is mentally challenging to listen as the baby cries herself to sleep or to remain patient while she is eating. It is not the same function of the brain as working, however.

Yesterday an opportunity presented itself for part time employment and while the concept of getting out and using my brain is interesting, I'm not ready to hand her off. An hour in the Y's play area is one thing, but a day in day care is still not an option. I think socialization is important and I know at some point I'll have to include it in our lives. But right now, I'm still too smitten with her to let go. While I am still adjusting to this new me, the excitement of seeing all of her firsts, be it a tooth or a word, is too great to go back.


The best part of the day

My daughter is seemingly incapable of making it until 7 a.m. on her own in her own bed. She's done it a handful of times; while I've tried to recreate the days schedule when it does happen, I've not been successful. Inevitably, about 5 a.m. she wakes, I stumble from my bed to hers, sweep her up and whisk her off to the comforts of my bed. She quickly returns to sleep. Around 7 I start to feel her stirring, then about 7:02 I receive a quick, uncontrolled, smack in me eyeball or nose. She is awake and wants me to be as well. She makes herself heard with the morning abuse routine. She'll pull my hair, pinch my nose, or squeeze my lip between her tiny fingers with the strength of an Olympic athlete. Super human infant strength.

Then our morning begins, and slowly at that. We lay in bed for thirty minutes playing with my hair and face, tickling her neck, and showering her with snuggles and kisses. She falls into my neck with her mouth open, gums exposed, and tries to kiss me back. She makes the sounds of infancy. She grunts, screams, giggles, and spit covers my pajamas.

Before I had a baby morning was my enemy. I was late to work all of the time because I hated getting up. My husband, a born morning person, referred to me as the bear. "Try not to wake the bear..." he'd warn overnight guests. He'd bring me coffee on the weekends in hopes of waking me peacefully. He quickly learned that tickling me was not the way to wake the bear; removing the covers didn't work either. He worried when I was pregnant, what will happen when we have the baby? Fortunately, the baby changed everything about morning for me. My baby wakes up every morning in a good mood, happy in fact. It is so contagious that the bear in me retreated and in its place a happy, silly mommy has moved in.


September 22 - The other moms

Other moms can be torture. Why don't we all just get along? Some moms are very judgey and opinionated about how they do it, what their kid can do, what their kid eats; as adults shouldn't we all just agree that we each have our own way? Don't preach at me about your way.

My dear friend went to the park in a neighboring town. Very million dollar home area. She overheard other mom dish about what foreign language class their 5 year olds were taking. The standards for success will always be raising. When our parents were kids success didn't mean a college degree. Now that isn't even the question. The question is: what is your graduate work done in? We should be teaching our kids foreign language. But does the competition of success begin at 5?

Do yourself a favor. Stop looking outward, only judge yourself, and go for a walk for pete's sake. People who exercise are happier, live longer, and have better sex. Exercise America.