Thursday, April 21, 2005

Not Such a Bad Mom

I often place Genny in the hallway where I can see her while I use the bathroom. This morning I did just that. What was unusual was that she crawled toward me. Gen has been struggling with pre-crawling for months. And now, today, on her 11-month birthday, she crawled.

I was strolling her to the park when it actually hit me…I’m not such a bad mom after all. She must have done her first crawl yesterday morning when she lunged off the bed. That’s why the accident happened.

As I walked through the neighborhood today I was greeted by a few moms I know who all had baby falling out of bed stories to share. I now know that I’m not the first mom to have watched in horror as her child fell just far enough out of her reach to save.

Genny seemed to be feeling fine today. And, so, yes—the crawling. She crawled across the living room. She crawled across the kitchen. She tried to eat cat food.

It’s amazing how she grows in such leaps and bounds. It seemed like she was stuck in the same in-between crawling stage for at least three months and then for her to all of a sudden just crawl, without any more “baby steps”, is bizarre. But then I guess that’s how mastering skills works, even for adults—we practice forever and seem to be getting nowhere and then all of a sudden, we’re suave experts.

Perhaps this is true for motherhood, too. But if it is, I don’t know where I am in the learning process. It’s almost like I begin each day brand new, helpless and unable to move and then as the day unwinds I find myself figuring out when to put Genny down for her naps, what and how much to feed her and how to keep her occupied. Then by the time that it’s her bedtime I have achieved mastery, for the day.

I’m an expert mom, tonight. I do find joy in that, but it also makes me aware that perhaps I’m not becoming expert at anything else. I have no time for myself—for my writing.

I’m writing now. This blog keeps me writing, if just this little bit every day. I’m finally oiling myself up again. Let this little bit of writing, this little bit of “me” time sustain me through motherhood.

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