Friday, January 18, 2013

"I'm sorry, I'm running a few minutes late"

To my friends without children: Why I am always late

I know it frustrates you when we say we'll meet at 6 and I roll up somewhere between 15 and 30 minutes late. I know that I've always been a punctual person and now this has changed. Its not because I don't respect you, or I'm not looking forward to seeing you. And its not that I don't know that I'm running late. Its just really, really different getting out of the house with an infant.

Before the baby, this is what it looked like for me to meet you for a 6pm dinner date. At 5:30, I washed my face, combed my hair and quickly changed my clothes if I needed to. I grabbed my purse, hopped in the car and I was there.

After the baby, it looks something more like this. 4:30, start to clean myself up, find some clothes to wear. Pick up the baby to feed him, he's not hungry and won't nurse. Get his diaper bag together, realize there are no clean bottles, wash bottles, finish getting the diaper bag together. Go to change his diaper, realize he's soaked through all his clothes, change the diaper, wash the baby, find a new outfit for him to wear. Since I haven't had time to get the laundry done, this involves digging through piles of clothes for something. Get him dressed, realize that the outfit I picked (which fit him when it went into the wash) no longer fits him. Find a new outfit. Baby spits up as I'm putting the outfit on him. Throw it in the wash and find a third outfit. Get it on him even though he wants to wiggle from one end of the changing table to the other. Okay. Baby's dressed. Time to get me dressed. Realize that I have spit up in my hair. Rinse out my hair as best I can in the sink, put on clothes. Baby now decides that he's hungry. Feed the baby. Try to burp him without getting spit up on either his clean clothes or mine. Variable success with that one. Okay, we're ready to go. Oops, can't find his hat or the pacifier, dig through the piles of stuff in the living room. Pacifier and warm hat located. Realize that it's already after 6. Stop what I'm doing to send a text and let you know I'm going to be late. Load the baby into the car seat, spend several minutes trying to soothe him and get him buckled in while he thrashes around (he HATES the car seat). Take a deep breath. Insert pacifier in baby's mouth. Proceed to drive.

I'm not complaining. I wouldn't trade it for the world, but you can wait a few minutes and be understanding, he really can't.

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