Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Parental Obsession


Everything revolves around sleep.  How much sleep did I get last night?  How long has the baby been sleeping?  Is she about to wake up?  Why must she always wake up as soon as I am sitting down to eat?  Is she getting enough sleep during the day?  How long should her naps be at this age anyway?  The magic touch/routine/process I thought I had in putting her to sleep last week, or yesterday, or this morning isn't working!  What do I do now?

"They" told me that once I was a parent, I'd understand.

I thought they were just cynical. And I knew my skills as the oldest of six would guide and protect me from the perils of parenthood.  I just knew I could handle this and that it would be the most wonderful thing in the world.  Surely they were just exaggerating and ungrateful of the incredible thing they had.  Why must they always tell you of the horrors of parenthood?  And then just follow the horror story with - "but it's all worth it."  It is the most incredible gift to have a child!  A CHILD!  That should be the first thing that ever comes to mind.

Well, now that I'm a parent - I understand.

The seemingly little things become incredible obsessions and can be overwhelming.  But - every once in a while, I will catch a glimpse of Clara and I in the mirror while I'm desperately trying to get her to fall asleep and I am taken aback by her sheer size, her sweet face, her pudgy fingers, and I take a deep breath.  I breathe her in. And I enjoy that very moment in time and give in to the obsession of CLARA. 

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