Somewhere along the way I realized that sitting in an empty house for hours on end with a baby who can only eat, sleep and poop is not exactly good for my mental health.
Some people do it and power to them. I go nuts. While I’m an introvert and like my alone time, caring for a baby (as sweet and precious and oh so lovey that baby is) is not alone time/down time/personal time. Nope. Not one little bit. Kris came home the other day and said to me, “I can tell when A has had a nap because you are ready to go.” AKA: you showered, put on clean clothes, washed the throw-up out of your hair and stopped looking altogether homeless. It takes very little effort on my part to look homeless. In fact, I used to have a thing that I called “no shower Mondays.” Why? Because I didn’t feel like it. Mondays are hard. Why shower? I KNOW I’M A TERRIBLE PERSON. Let’s scratch all that and start over.
Randi in the house for an extended period of time with just a baby:
- Looks homeless
- Eats too much candy corn
- Has mental breakdowns
Thus, I realized, I needed to make sure I was taking the time to get out of the house with my little love. I’ll be honest, the first time was terrifying. One, I was already dealing with the whole “who thought this was a good idea to give me a helpless infant to care for when I couldn’t even keep 3 birds alive growing up?” syndrome. Two, I was so worried she was going to start crying in a store and I wouldn’t know how to handle it. So we went to Marshalls. And she did cry. And it was okay. Even better, I was okay.
Randi who gets out of the house and enjoys life with her baby:
- Does not look
- Drinks too much coffee (way better than candy corn)
- Is enjoyable to be around
Bonus: I have found that A also looks less homeless, is all-around happier and sleeps better at night when we get out. Win-Win-Win.
So what do we do when we go out?
Usually three things:
1. Grocery shop – No I was not buying a blender. I was just so happy to be out of the house on this day that I literally walked up and down every aisle at Walmart. This made possible by Baby K-Tan, the green sling I am wearing aka my favorite thing ever. I don’t have to tie it myself, it slips on easily, it adjusts to make it comfortable on the back and A LOVES it. She gets in it and goes right to sleep. I am able to have hands free which is FABULOUS when out and about. PS. She is wearing clothes… you just can’t see them in this picture.
2. Go for walks – right now I have three different moms that I go walking with. It’s fantastic. A’s favorite place (beside the sling) is in the stroller. She loves the outdoors, the sights, the noises, the smells…
actually I made that last one up. I don’t know if she loves the smells. Do baby’s have favorite smells? She will often nap in the stroller as well and I get grownup time. It’s the best!
Can I take a minute and just say how thankful I am for this lady in particular. I have found that having a friend the same age, in the same life stage, and with the same calling is very rare and very special. Erin and her family just moved back to town (they are church planting!) and I could not be more excited or grateful for her friendship.
3. Coffee dates – I have a few friends that I meet up with on a semi-regular basis for coffee. (Looking at your Julianne. :D) At first I thought I might have to cut these times out because do babies and coffee shops really mix? However, I have found that if I take A close to nap time with a bottle she is happy as a clam. She just wants to participate! Also, it doesn’t hurt to sometimes leave her with Daddy and just have a little bit of time for me. It’s refreshing for the soul.
What about all you moms out there? How did you handle having a little one at home for the first time? What were some of your favorite things to do?
PS. Moms of babies and preschoolers in town: if you are in need of getting out we are heading to my FAVORITE place on Thursday! You should join us!