Seven-plus years! As Buzzy's pediatrician exclaimed at her last well visit, she has reached the age of reason. So, then, has 4 AM Feeding! Although with just over 160 posts, it's arguable that it's still in its infancy. . . .
Lax blogging notwithstanding, the baby whose arrival I apprehensively awaited when I first started writing here is now a gap-toothed first grader, and her little sister is somehow, impossibly, five. We've moved twice: one big relocation, then across our new town. We renovated a very old house, which proved true all those renovation stories about taking longer and costing more than expected.
No one in my new town knows the pre-motherhood me; every conversation is about the kids or the house. Frankly, I'm not sure I remember who I was before these kids and this move, either. But we are finally opening boxes packed since DC. And I find old books and old sweaters and they are MINE, and I am so happy to see them again. When I re-read my first post, which I wrote before Buzzy was born, I do recognize that painfully pregnant woman who was afraid of never sleeping again. (Turns out, being right about that is the most hollow of all victories.)
Now that I'm no longer a mom to little littles, now that I can again carry a small purse if I so choose, now that my life does not revolve around potty and sleep schedules (well, that last part remains aspirational), and now that the new house is, if not done, at least habitable, I wonder what I'll do next. Return to lawyering? Write? Start yoga? Run a race? None of the above?
Turns out that the Age of Reason may bring with it a bit of an identity crisis to one who has spent the past seven years herding the unreasonable from Mommy and Me music classes to story hours at the library. In an effort to ferret out what's next, I'm editing a little bit on this cool project:http://www.worldmomsblog.com/ . I'm teaching Sunday School once a week to pre-Kindergarteners, who haven't yet reached the Age of Reason but whose questions about God, Santa, big sisters, dinosaurs, and boogers force my own mental capacity to its limits. Of course, I'm still trying to persuade Rosie that using the bathroom and sleeping before midnight are not conspiracies to keep her away from all the fun, and Buzzy isn't quite yet ready for college. From the foregoing, all I've determined that a second career in early childhood education is not where my future lies, and that working with words is unlikely to cover the cost of daycare (especially if I continue as a volunteer).
Some of my working friends are now opting to stay home; now that their kids are getting older and their environments are growing beyond the cozy bubble of early childhood, they feel it's important to keep an eagle eye on what's going on. Some of my stay-at-home friends are heading back to their former jobs, either full- or (the lucky ones!) part-time. Still others are starting brand new endeavors. I don't quite know which direction I'll take, but I'm once again driven to confess my apprehension about what comes next here. At the least, some other mother of a newly reasonable child may realize she's not alone--which, in retrospect, may have been the point all along.