Sync It Up (Day #10)

Lesson learned from Lil Mil today:  I cannot fight her schedule.

I can try to manage it, even attempt to set it (eat! play! sleep! repeat!), but I cannot fight it.

At 4:30 a.m. this morning, my little peanut decided that it was time to get up.  Actually, I guess I made the official call.  I’d been up since 2:45 listening to her moan and whimper, so when it turned into a full fledge screamcry, I decided to switch into morning mode.  Embrace the new day. 

I love mornings.  Early mornings.  The earlier the better.  If I could start my day at 3 a.m. (and end it at about 7 p.m.), I would.  Unfortunately, Husband prefers that his wife be awake at dinner time. 

So, mornings.  My most productive time of day.  I can accomplish more in the first three hours I’m awake than I can in the whole rest of the day.  Which is why I never sleep in.  I can’t afford to lose that early morning gold.

It should come as no surprise, then, that when I decided to take on the three Bs, I was counting on my early mornings.  I knew that if I could simply find a few hours each morning, I could do this.  Even if I spent the rest of each day feeding and diapering and swaddling and hugging and cuddling, I’d still be in good shape.  My mornings were all I needed.  My mornings were enough.

And now here I am, two and a half weeks into motherhood, wondering where my mornings have gone.  It’s not like I’m not awake – for the past seventeen days Lil Mil has been the perfect little alarm clock.  A few minutes after four o’clock each morning, she cries her hungry girl cry.  Which would be great, if I’d spent the previous eight hours sleeping soundly.  Or if I knew that I’d get the next four hours to myself.  

But that’s not how it goes in Life with a Newborn.  Here, moms don’t sleep soundly (if at all) and mornings are reliably unpredictable.  Babies cry when they should be sleeping and eat when they should be full.   Coffee gets cold before it is drunk and cereal goes uneaten.  And before you know it, the morning is gone.

The unpredictability is predictable.  I’ve quickly learned that I cannot count on my early mornings.  I know now that some most days, I won’t get a single early morning hour to myself.  And yet, I still haven’t modified my strategy.  I’m still hoping my newborn will get the memo and save her meltdowns and feeding frenzies for mid-day.

What was it Einstein said about insanity? 

I can’t fight my daughter’s (non-)schedule.  That wasn’t the point of this project, anyway.  The point was to embrace the detour, not to try to micromanage it. 

So.  Tomorrow, when Lil Mil cries at 4:30 a.m, I’ll feed her like I always do.  But instead of getting up and making coffee and forcing the day to begin, maybe I’ll abandon my expectations of a productive morning and hope instead for a productive afternoon.  And maybe, just maybe, Lil Mil and I will both go back to bed.

Insanity:  doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.  – Albert Einstein


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