Children. Plans. Hah, says the universe. It was supposed to be like this: Helene would have slipped out of my body into a warm tub, the waiting hands of her father, and would have then been placed on my belly, umbilical cord still pulsing between us. We'd be into our dream daycare, just a few blocks from our house, and our baby would happily lie in her father's arms and drink expressed milk from a bottle. I would have had a miraculous Mirena IUD placed in my uterus, without complication, to be removed easily with a tug upon the occasion I decide to reproduce again. But none of that is what happened. This is what happened: I had a surprise breech baby, a murky nightmare of a Cesarean section. We have no childcare; only a vague promise of "fall looks good, " and a muddled running of numbers, researching of nannies. Helene has refused with all her might and screaming to drink from a bottle, after doing it happily for a couple of months. The Mirena, in a one-in-a-gazillion occurrence, slipped up sideways into my uterus, and now lies there awkward and useless on the right side, to be removed only by laprascopic surgery. These things were not supposed to happen.
Here's Helene's room.
The one that we were supposed to bring her home to, just about six months ago. Well, you know how that went. Recall what it looked like in the "during construction" phase. You know that we were still in the rented beige apartment when Helene was born, that we brought her home there, because our house was still a dust-covered deathtrap construction zone until the end of January. I guess it doesn't really matter, since the baby has slept in our room (wherever it was) since she was born. But I missed it, that lovely frantic hormone-infused nesting, nestling, getting everything clean and pretty and placed and ready for the beautiful known surprise. Better late than never. Except for this stupid mobile, which I got as a shower gift.
Which says it's good for ages '"0 to 5 months." Well, fuck. Because my baby is just about six months old so I'd better just take down this insanely mesmerizing mobile that I JUST PUT UP. Oh no. We're using that damn mobile, even if it means it stays up there until the baby can stand, pull it down upon her small head, and yell "I hate you! I have a dent in my head now and I will never have a prom date! You have ruined my life!" at her stupid mother who put the thing up in the first place. So yeah, the baby has a real room now that actually looks like a baby lives in it. I think she's taken a total of three naps in there now, looking all stranded and small in the giant island of her lovely dark wood crib. She hasn't slept at night in there yet. Because I can't let her yet. I am still too attached to placing a hand on her little body in the co-sleeper next to me to quiet her when she cries out in her sleep, or to just feel the soft, solid rise and fall of her breath in the velvet dark, or to slide her into bed next to me for a precious hour or two of snoozing in the early morning, so I can watch her stir and stretch, and see her big grey-blue eyes open wide to the morning, wide smile to follow.
And then there's this. The Precious Planet Jumperoo.
Because Helene loooves standing, loves being bounced up and down, cannot get enough, and Mama's arms are tired from being a human jumperoo every day (though it is helping my triceps). So I decided we needed to buy this most elaborate and complicated plastic piece of baby paraphernalia (definitely the biggest, gaudiest, plastickiest baby thing we've bought to date) so the baby could jump! And bounce! And spin! And entertain herself for maybe dozens of minutes at a time. The Jumperoo was dutifully purchased at a big suburban baby store, wedged in the trunk, hauled home, and assembled (despite the usual horrifyingly bad instructions). The baby was placed in the seat that looks like a giant monkey is eating her, and voila! Let the fun begin. Just one problem with this whole plan. Our darling, precious petite flower of a baby? Her feet? Do not touch the floor. So she just kind of....dangles there....in the monkey head. Sigh.
I should stop getting so attached to plans.