I wrote this in the first weeks after having the baby:
I am struck, at the mo, by the asymmetry in how having a child has affected K and my life. As I see it from here, his life remains much as before but with a few added bits. He takes Anya for a while when he gets home, if she is not feeding; he made me breakfast for a few weeks running; he comes home for lunch whenever he can and works from home one day a week (I know, I am lucky!!!). But basically his life seems to be much as it was: job, friends, computer time + baby.
My life, on the other hand is practically unrecogniseable. I have quit my job and my day-to-day goes: breastfeed, change diaper, play with baby, help her sleep, and repeat (every two hours on a 24 hour basis). That is not to say that my life now is worse, it is just so different and I was not fully prepared for that, somehow. I did not see it coming, at all. Funny that. Everybody tells you how hard and all consuming it is going to be. They tell you how much things change but I just couldn’t relate to that. Try as I may I couldn’t imagine how having a kid could be that much work. I heard some mums say they couldn’t even steal enough time to have a shower… I just couldn’t visualise how that could be possible. It is not that I didn’t believe them, I just thought there case was extreme and it would be fine for me. Hah!
I thought my life would be the same + baby. I would just strap the baby to me and go. I would do all the things I had always done and then some, perhaps go traveling and discover new pastures. And hey perhaps I will. Perhaps that is still to come. But hey, for now I am adapting to this new life of mine and learning to accept things as they are now (not how I thought they would be). I don’t just ‘have a baby’. I am a mum and that changes everything.
I see things slightly differently now. I see how this immensely life-changing event has opened up new parts of K. How he responds to Anya and how he is fundamentally different. I also see how much we share the work of caring for her, lovingly. This new life phase, its challenges and its joys have brought us together more than any before. There will be more to follow on this in next posts, no doubt.