Reflections on Family, Chaos, and a Five-Month-Old

Saturday, January 13, 2018

I’ve tried to start this post so many times now. There. A sentence! Woot!

Quite frankly, I’ve been in a very reflective mood these last few days. You see, my mom was rushed to the hospital and I spent that evening by the phone waiting for news from my dad. It just so happened that I had a busy day and baby (who is now teething) had a fussy evening. As I crawled into bed, I got the news. And froze. Should I run to the hospital? My eyes are closing, should I uber it instead? And then my dad tells me to stay home; my mom had a bed in the ER and they were waiting for a room to open up. What could I possibly do if I went to see them that evening?

The answer was nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Naturally, as I was drifting off to sleep, I remembered the days when I’d spend my weekends at home sleeping in until noon and getting out of bed only when my mom had lunch ready or started calling me lazy.

I used to plan so much for one week. My agenda was absurd trying to balance a full-time job, a full-time college schedule, a ton of side projects (volunteering, clubs, and interning), PLUS adding time for studying and homework assignments. And then the weekend would roll around, sometimes I’d have classes on Saturdays, so my weekends were really only on Sundays. I’d spend that day just sleeping and relaxing, building up my energy for the following busy week.

 

Yet, when Sunday evening came around, I’d start feeling like I wasted the entire day. I never did enough. That used to make me so anxious. My mom would always sit me down con un cafecito y pan and everything would be ok again. It became a habit to plan so much and then feel like I wasn’t accomplishing anything. And that’s exactly what it was. A habit. A habit that would trigger anxiety.

It became a habit to plan so much and then feel like I wasn’t accomplishing anything at all. And that’s exactly what it was. A habit. A habit that would trigger anxiety.

Looking back, those Sundays where I spent my day on Pinterest and drinking coffee with mom, those are some of the fondest memories I have. Yes, I did laundry; yes, I’d spent my day tidying up my room; yes, music would be blasting; and yes, my brother would be annoying (lol). But, at the end of the day, I spent time with my family. I spent time organizing my chaotic week.

Looking back now, I was way too hard on myself.

As a new mom, I’m finally starting to understand that slowing down is everything. That my mom was right. It’s time to stop trying to overbook my weekend and simply enjoy it.

Baby Dino (yes, like the Flintstones’s Dino) is now 5 months old. He’s changed so much since he was born. He can recognize who I am. He loves jumping on his jumper. He touches his toes and is now exploring what’s around. He’s such a curious baby! He’ll stop nursing just to see who spoke or what that noise was. He’s changing constantly and I don’t want to miss it. At 5 months, he’s doing so much more than we thought. (Also, this baby is much easier than I thought babies were, but that’s a separate post.)

Between juggling work, building up my career, and being with my kid, I’m starting to realize what’s important to me. At the end of it all, I don’t want to get that anxiety of feeling like I wasted a day. I want to break the habit of booking too much and simply spend time with my little family.

 

QUESTION FOR THE COMMENTS: How do you unwind and slow down? 

 

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