Since I first shared 25 random things about me, seismic shifts rocked my daily life and even subtly altered the foundation of my personality. By way of update, I present “25” (I agree that a full list is way too long) “random” things about mom me:
2. Ian and I tell Viv, “I love you,” on a regular basis. As I’m dropping her off at daycare or leaving her alone with her daddy I sometimes holler, “Love you!” Awarding this offhanded behavior strict precedential value, Vivi now shortens phrases at her convenience, including responding to “see you later” with “later” and telling us “I love!”
4. My daughter loves to “help” me fold laundry. Though she relishes the praise received when she successfully transfers clean bibs from the laundry basket into her bib bucket, lace unmentionables are her absolute favorite item. She delights in using them to play peek-a-boo since she can cheat, ambitious little thing that she is.
5. My attempts to model desirable behavior for Viv often make me happier. For example, I read that one ought to refrain from criticizing his or her own body in a child’s presence, especially a little girl’s; any imperfection in appearance ought to be blamed on a man-made object not a person, or so the theory goes. “My butt looks saggy in these pants” has been replaced with “these pants don’t do my figure justice.” “I look like a hairy beast with these eyebrows” cedes to “I wish there was room in my schedule for a wax appointment.” It’s a subtle shift, but one that makes me less critical of myself, both aloud and internally.
7. I thought the invention of the Blackberry introduced a revolutionary level of multitasking into my daily life. Turns out technology has nothing on nature. Now that I’m a stay-at-home mom, I’d estimate that my attention is divided 90% of the time. Not helping matters, Vivienne doesn’t just crave attention, her actions (such as hoot-hooting like an owl at an impressive volume whenever Ian and I attempt to speak directly to one another) suggest a claim of divine right.
9. Like a beachcomber wading in the tide, I constantly feel the pull of organizational complacency. Every night before Viv’s bath we sing the “clean up” song as the three of us tidy up her playthings and various discarded textiles. Yet “every night” sometimes morphs into four nights a week, and the dishes look much more daunting when toys and clothes litter the floor – like a cup of water spilled on the hardwood, Viv’s knickknacks create the optical illusion of multiplying in volume apace with the surface area allowed them. After a few weeks of succumbing to temptation, I recently renewed my commitment to straightening up the entire apartment while Viv and Ian enjoy their nightly bathing ritual. I came to realize that no matter how defeated I feel at the end of a day, I’ll always find myself more dejected waking up to a messy house.
10. My love for Viv is akin to others’ affection for deep-fried, boneless chicken wings: thinking about her, looking at her, and indulging in her company makes me feel incredible, until it induces cardiac arrest.
11. At a friend’s bachelorette party just before Viv’s first birthday, I began to suspect that I’d irrevocably lost a part of me. Though I drank plenty of alcohol, I couldn’t shake a sense of responsibility. When the lovely revelers ran out of booze, I volunteered to go buy more; when one of our number got a little too drunk, I enlisted help from a sober source to make sure we didn’t run afoul of a vomit-related liquidated damages clause in the limo contract; when girls seemed to be chatting up the wrong kind of fellow, I intervened; and when everyone else slept soundly, I lay awake worrying about potential supplemental hotel charges. I’m not saying I behaved responsibly, just that I couldn’t free myself from the desire to do so. Rest assured, I’m still here. This New Year’s Eve, Ian and I left Viv with her grandparents on the Upper West Side and traveled to Brooklyn (thankfully no mishaps at customs) where we partied like it was 2004: I said stupid things I didn’t really believe, engaged in conversations far too deep for the venue and occasion, forgot the rest of the room and shared in the best countdown kiss ever, and drank way more than my body weight or next day’s plans warranted.
12. Viv recently made the local newspaper (albeit the online version; print leaves us both something to aspire to): http://www.seattlepi.com/news/gallery/Star-Wars-exhibit-at-Pacific-Science-Center-7714/photo-830170.php?SubID=6493&page=3>itle=Star%2520Wars%2520exhibit%2520at%2520Pacific%2520Science%2520Center&pubdate=3/18/2011.
13. I am no longer the most tightly wound bobbin in the basket. After dealing with my child’s illness and watching her little life blossom, I’ve lost my edge. Lord knows I’m not unranked, but I don’t see a trip to the anxiety and obsession national championship in the near future.
15. I’m 14 weeks pregnant!