Why I'm thankful
Good afternoon, good lookin. I realize that Thanksgiving is long gone, but I’m not ready to say goodbye. Last week, I bowed down to the pecan pie and her many carby companions, as per usual, but I never gave thanks in any sort of meaningful way. I recently made a vow to tackle some honest topics, so here goes.
I’ve had a bumpy year that has been my most mentally taxing one to date, but it’s also been pretty wonderful, thanks to the heroic actions of a few.
My solid night vision. I got Lasik a few years back, ending the longest relationship of my life in the process - contacts. I’d spent 20 years with contact lenses (!!), and now after a few well spent dolla dolla bills, y’all, I’m able to jolt out of bed multiple times a night at the first cries of hunger and lumber upstairs to feed the baby without the aid of glasses. I’m so thankful for that.
The ladies. Not to be crass, but I’ve only recently fallen in love with my breasts, and I can’t miss an opportunity to praise them. I used to curse them for their ability to halt side zippers in their tracks, but I’ve changed my tune. They’re magical. What else in this world is both a comprehensive food source, an instant cry eliminator and a source of endless calm? They’re like eggs, headphones and a yoga retreat rolled into one. They are dream appendages (are they appendages? Whatever, I’m going with it), and I will be forever thankful for them and their admirable work ethic. All hail the ladies.
My partner and community. Y’all, I had a baby eight weeks early. That’s so many weeks early. I had to stay in the hospital for a week after my water broke in a room with three roommates. It was a constantly revolving door of women going into labor, and I was the one “long term” patient. My husband single-handedly set up the nursery, schlepped around town buying preemie-sized clothes and brought me food, his noise canceling headphones and his iPad loaded up with tv shows and movies for my hospital stay. My friends pitched in and gave us their car seats, baby baths, baby slings, bottles, etc and then STILL bought gifts for the baby. My mother-in-law flew in and sat by my hospital bedside just to keep me company. My mom FaceTimed with me at all hours. I don’t know how I would have gotten through it without my husband, friends and family, and so for them I give thanks.
My mental rolodex of random melodies. I have hundreds of songs swirling around in there - ranging from the greatest hits of my Bat Mitzvah-era to the stylings of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons - and so I’m never without a tune for the baby. I can insert his name into virtually anything, thanks to the wide variety of previously largely ignored music. It’s come in so much handy, and for that I’m so thankful.
Eight moths of maternity leave. For those of you whose eyebrows have shot into your hairline, I’m guessing you live in the states or somewhere else where you’ve never even taken two consecutive weeks of time off. I moved to Europe nearly seven years ago, and beforehand I never thought I’d be someone who took any sort of lengthy time away from work to raise a baby. I remember my colleagues in a previous job complaining about how the company just gave 6 weeks of paid leave, and even though I was already in my late 20s I failed to register why that wasn’t enough time away. Dude. It’s not even close to enough time. You don’t sleep for the first three months, since the little piglet is up every 2-3 hours to eat around.the.clock. The baby treats any time you slip away to feed yourself or use the loo as if you’ve abandoned them on a park bench. They are all need without any meaningful way to communicate, and it is the most challenging work I’ve done to date. Add in a couple of months in which the baby wasn’t even supposed to exist outside of the womb, and that increases the level of difficulty. Anyways, I’m so thankful for a job that supports me and a country that enables this sort of leave. So thankful.
Also, thank you beauties for taking an interest in my ramblings. You’ve given me the space to let my freak flag fly, and for that I’m forever thankful.
Roll on, December!