Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Clean House Is A Happy House

Today as I sat, exhausted from a day of busy house/baby work, folding diapers I realized something, something kind of important to me. I finally, after all these months, feel like I'm living up to my roll as "wife" and mother. I don't know if I've just gotten the hang of things or if moving into a bigger space, even if it's not my own home yet, has alleviated the claustrophobic depression I was feeling in the condo. Or maybe spending some hours in the sun these past few weeks has really made me that much more capable, I wouldn't be surprised; it's been a long winter. Whatever it is I'm surprising myself more every day as I take on the cleaning, feedings, diaper changes, nap times, laundry and more, that used to exhaust me before I'd even finished a portion of what needed to get done that day.

Example? I've made my bed for at least 7 days in a row. That's impressive right? Maybe you have always made your bed every day. Good for you! I haven't. Bed making always seemed so ridiculous to me because I was just going to get in bed again that night. I'd go through phases where I'd make on occasion and when I was single I often made my bed, but I was never much of a messy sleeper so it was simply a matter of pulling the corner of my blankets up and putting pretty pillows out. Mr. Bear is NOT a neat sleeper and kicks the blankets every which way. This means that to make the bed I have to untangle the maze of sheets and comforters, readjust & fluff the pillows, and start from the very beginning (all the bed items pulled off the bed) every time. But having a neat and tidy bed feels good I've realized and what's more I don't feel like my bedroom should have to be a place that the door is closed to. Having a "made" bed IS important after all but it is a task that is easily skipped over when there are millions of other things to do. ANYWAY, my point is, I'm finding the energy to do the things that aren't always at the top of my "to do" list and for that I deserve a drink. Or two.

Perhaps a big contribution to this whole "successful" feeling is that I'm THIS CLOSE to feeling like I can say we've got a Baby Bear who sleeps through the night. I wholly underestimated her when it came to bedtime and nights without nursing. We did it without screaming for hours, though tears WERE involved (aren't a few of them inevitable when you have a tired, cranky baby?), and what's more I learned a lot about my relationship with my daughter. The first night she went down easily, as usual, but woke just a couple hours later in tears. I let her fuss for a bit to see if she was just searching for her binky and would go back down on her own. The Bear went in after a few minutes and oh boy did that piss her off. He tried to pick her up to calm her down but she wasn't having any of that. So I went in, I sang to her and held her hand, patted her back, assured her that she just needed to sleep and we were right there for her and she quieted down. The second night was easier and she only had to hear my voice from the doorway before she fell to sleep again. The third night she slept all the way through until 5 AM the next day. Last night was the same.

All that stress and all of the tears I shed over my insecurity in this situation and what I really needed to do was listen to my own mommy instincts. I don't doubt that we will have plenty of rough nights, no one ever sleeps perfectly all the time (and if they do I want to learn their tricks!) but if we can make it through this week I'll consider it an accomplished milestone.

Now I must return to my productive day; I have diapers in the wash, diapers sitting in the sun, wool drying, and about 3 more loads of wash that are nagging at me.


Jess said...

So glad things are going well! I also feel like I am finally getting into a groove. I think it just took time and now that our girls are 8 months old (can you believe it!?), we are getting used to our new roles. :)

Suzanne said...

I understand. My 5-year-old asked me if we could make our beds every day like the Sims do. Doh.


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