Wednesday, October 3

One Month In

It is one month into my new occupation as a full-time mom, and I have to say I think things are going rather well. Sure, the days can be exhausting and intense, but that is to be expected. Daily irritations and frustrations aside, so far this arrangement seems to be working for us. I miss certain aspects of working, naturally, but I've not had one moment where I thought, "Man, I wish I was at work!" When I'm with my son, I know I'm just where I need to be right now, and I've found that thought overrides any professional pangs.

Liam at UCLA. His shirt says "Future UCLA Grad."
In fact, if it's possible I think spending more time with my kid has made me even crazier about him. (Note: It's the "about him" in that last sentence that makes it an expression of love and not a simple factual statement... Just keepin' it real.) While close proximity and a constant marathon pace should be a formula for thin nerves and a short fuse, so far I've found it mostly reinforces the positives. Not that both Liam and I don't have our moments, of course--it's just that the positives ultimately seem to win out in the daily battles. That lesson has been a lovely, pleasant surprise.

Liam's first trip to the library.
Thus far my daily goals have proved to be a useful guide for our daily activities, as I hoped they would be. Liam is up with the sun (if not before), and while I caffeinate and peruse the morning news online, he gets his daily allotment of "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse" (a.k.a. "Mi Mow How"). After breakfast--Liam usually eats his and mine--we get dressed and head to the park around 9 o'clock. Nine has proved to be the golden hour for us at the park. Most days we have the place completely to ourselves, as most people don't start to show up until 10 a.m. or so. By that time, Liam is comfortably ensconced in his stroller with his sippy cup and morning snack while I push him up and down the sidewalks of our neighborhood hills and get in some decent physical exercise. I know this time isn't wasted because the hills are getting easier for me each week, but I won't be sorry when the temperatures around here finally cool off for good around Halloween.

Liam loves to chill with the iPad.
After our morning time at the park and a walk around the neighborhood, it's usually time for lunch, followed by naptime an hour or so later, around noon. God willing, Liam naps from 12-2 p.m., and I have a chance to do chores, each lunch, and/or collapse as I see fit. In the afternoon we do some reading or coloring, and have lots of playtime. If Liam is antsy and if it's not too hot out, we sometimes go for another walk before suppertime ushers in the evening routine and daddy's return.

Painting in the Children's Gallery at LACMA.
All of these activities vary from day to day, depending on what errands or chores need to be accomplished, but as you can see we fell into a new rhythm fairly quickly. We even threw in some fun outings last month--we went to UCLA and had lunch with Eric, visited the zoo and LACMA, and made Liam's first visit to the library. There are still some kinks I want to work out, like finding some social activities for us, and learning how to make the best use of my (very limited) time without Liam. 

In other words, the Great Balancing Act continues, job or no job.

Liam loved running through all of the lampposts of "Urban Light" at LACMA.

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