I feel like I should start off by apologizing to those of you who are experiencing winter weather; sharing this photo is not very nice. But it's my favorite from the week, so you're just going to have to manage your feelings of jealousy.
So many little things about life with Elvie are easier now that she has had corrective surgery and is no longer connected to any tubes or wires. I can set her down without worrying about keeping her covered or following her around with a wound vac. She can get more places by crawling, so she is happier. And pants! She can wear pants! I'm probably more excited about baby pants than any mother has been ever. I can just pull these on over a onesie and be done? Really? Fantastic.
Getting out has also proved to be easier. With her birth defect, most of her weight was carried in the lower right quarter of her body. I could put her in the carrier, but the balance was never quite right. It was even harder to use the stroller; I had to manage her as well as a bag and the stroller on public transportation, not to mention Zinashi. And when it came to preserving her privacy, ugh. Some days people would stare, and I wouldn't figure out that her skirt had gotten hiked up until it was too late. There were many days that I wanted to go places, but I just couldn't muster the strength and patience to make it happen. People would ask, "Were you out enjoying the weather today?" and I'd make some excuse. But the reality was that I was tired, and getting out was so hard, every single time.
So we've been enjoying the weather lately. We've been enjoying the crap out of it, frankly, whenever we have the chance. It's not as often as I'd like because work to be done catching up on stuff medical appointments and phone calls yada yada yada. But at least we can get out. At least I can think, "Oh, we need something from the grocery," and not immediately also think, "OH NOOOOOOOOOOO LIFE IS IN RUINS." We just go, and I get a coffee on the way out for stamina, because it might be more manageable to get out, but I'm still carting two kids around on public transportation.
In addition to enjoying the weather, we've also been enjoying having Elvie sleep in the big bed. Zinashi moved out, and Elvie moved right in. I know that not everyone is a fan of co-sleeping, but for me it is way easier to roll over and stick the bottle in Elvie's mouth than it is to have to get her out of a crib, whether it's in the same room or not. She also has this endearing habit of scooching just a little bit closer to me in her sleep. Sometimes I wake up perched on the very edge of the bed, with Elvie sidled right up next to me. Jarod, on the other side, has sometimes gone all starfish on me, and it's a good thing the baby is between us so I don't smack him in a fit of exhaustion-induced delirium.
Zinashi isn't making it all night in her bed anymore, but she's not in the big bed with us. She had a nightmare last week after we had a little birds and bees talk, during which I showed her a video of a baby developing in the womb. It was all great until she woke up screaming in the middle of the night, going on about how the babies in the tummy on the computer were scary. That night I snuggled her in my remaining small amount of bed real estate, and the next night I made a little nest of blankets for her on the floor right by my side of the bed, so they would be there if she needed to sleep in the room with us. Now in the bleary morning hours, she stumbles in. Sometimes I wake up to find her standing there, staring at me. We're both confused for a few moments before I say, "Oh, lie down. I'll get the sound machine." We really need to buy another sound machine so I don't have to leave the bed at night.
I think that sums up life right now. It's great, but I'm still tired. In fact, I'm going to bed right now.