A New Normal

Whenever you add a new member to your family, there's always a bit of an adjustment period. It takes awhile for everyone to fit into the new groove. We've never been a family that is big on schedule - we're more a general "routine" kind of people - but I know many families do thrive on schedules and adhere to them pretty strictly. I actually have a friend who very rigidly plans their day - they're all up at 7 AM, at 7:05 they eat breakfast, at 7:15 they make their beds, and so on and so forth. I was thinking about them the other day when making an appointment and the person on the other end of the line said, "Why don't you tell me about your schedule?" I had to stifle a laugh. Here's my schedule right now, at a glance:

5:30 AM: Awakened by newborn who wants to eat. Again. Hopefully I've had a good stretch of sleep or two - maybe 5-6 hours total if I am very lucky - but it's more likely I've had about 2.
6-ish AM: Possibly fall back asleep if baby isn't fussy. If he is fussy, it's time to get up!
7 AM: 2 year old is awake and singing. I rest my eyes and listen.
7:05 AM: 2 year old is awake and saying, "Mama? Mama?" Continue resting eyes and consider answering.
7:15 AM:  2 year old has resorted to saying, "Helllllpppppppppppppp" in a dejected sort of way. Tell him I'm coming.
7:30 AM: Change 2 year old's diaper. This involves lots of kicking and whining. I'll also probably change the newborn's diaper too as they seem to time their bowel movements/pees together.
8 AM: 2 year old has breakfast and is watching Peppa Pig. Newborn needs fed.
8:10 AM: 2 year old needs more "nannies." In fact, he needs the entire bunch. (Nannies are bananas.) He's already had one and I try to reason with him. This is stupid because toddlers don't listen to reason. Toddler has a meltdown because I won't let him eat the entire bunch.
8:30 AM: Toddler meltdown has awakened the 5 year old. She puts in her breakfast request on her way to the living room. A literal request. Like I am her waitress. Sigh. I make her breakfast and feed the dog.
8:45 AM: I flip on the 9 year old's bedroom light and tell him he needs to take the dog out.
8:50 AM: I make sure that the 9 year old is actually awake and again tell him to take the dog outside. Toddler yells. Baby starts wailing.
8:55 AM: I pull the covers off the 9 year old and tell him to take the dog outside.
9 AM: I tell the 9 year old the dog is peeing on his bed. (The dog isn't but that sure makes him get out of bed fast...)

That's what...two hours or so? I'll go ahead and stop there for now, but my day also includes the toddler biting the 9 year old which ends up reducing them BOTH to tears, answering the phone and not being able to hear the person on the other end due to crying, a large dash of homeschooling and reading aloud, the toddler dumping yogurt on the living room rug, lots of rocking, changing more diapers, several more feedings, probably too much TV/electronics, and a couple small arguments about insignificant things. If we're lucky I also achieve bath time for at least one or two, perhaps an outing to a co-op class or play date, a nap for the toddler, and I'm able to cook a real dinner, i.e. not a frozen pizza. If it's been a very good day, I might also write a blog post or do some reading during the day/that evening. And if it's been a crap day, we all go to bed early - except for me, who will be up multiple times throughout the night - and then start over again the next day. Even with the crappy things that sometime happen during the day and the lack of sleep, it's a good life. I'm very fortunate.

So I'm curious - how's your schedule right now? Are you adjusting to a new normal like I am, just trying to make it through each unique day? Are you on a schedule, with things expertly timed out? Or maybe you're somewhere in between. Let me know in the comments!

1 comment :

  1. I just adore this post! I am the oldest of 6 children. I am reminded of my awesome mom when I read this post. You guys are superwomen for sure. I just had my first. She will be 4 months old on March 18th and we definitely have a new normal around here. My husband and I are both schedule loving people but we have had to learn how to be flexible with our little girl. Her first 3 months were miserable due to colic/acid reflux. She is finally getting better. PTL. I was so determined to get her on a strict schedule but that just hasn't worked for her. I am learning so much everyday day. My little girl is my most precious gift from God. I may never sleep well again but I have joy unspeakable. Thank you again for this great post!


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