Wednesday, September 30, 2009

100% Squishing

            A year ago today I didn’t have a baby. The little munchkin was born 363 days ago, and was destined to change my world forever. Today I was looking in the mirror at work, and noticed the black rings under my eyes. Certainly not a youthful look. Michelle was telling me recently about just how exhausted she can get, and it makes me realize:
            I think we’ve aged a lot over this last year.
            I wonder if this is why it seems a lot of parents are fuddy-duddies. They don’t go out. They seem more mellow. They’re more conservative. More careful. They build up the comfort of their home rather than adventuring into the wild beyond.
            It’s tiring having kids. The constant alertness required of us, especially at night, wears down the system so that the effort and extra costs associated with attempting anything other than cocooning in the little protective shelter of our home is too demanding and draining to seem worth the bother most of the time.
            We do get out. Don’t get me wrong. We’ve hiked and sailed, danced and swung from jungle gyms. Traveled by car, by plane, by boat, by bus. We’ve been to the zoo, the aquarium, the petting farm, the county fair, the local park with ducks and dogs. We’ve swum in oceans, lakes, rivers, hot springs, pools, and down water slides. Yes, as I think about it, even with a baby we most certainly do get out, but it’s in an utterly different form than what we used to do.
            When I look at this past year, it seems to me that we’ve squished a couple of years of living into it. We’ve squished 100% of my daughter’s life into it. And although it’s true that we’ve curtailed an awful lot from what we would have done without our little Sweatpea, it strikes me that we’ve experienced a heck of a lot more.
            It’s been an important year. One I don’t think I’ll easily forget. Even though my daughter probably won’t remember a single thing.

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