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Dashiell at nine months



I greet each new year excited for a fresh start and for change. Already there's a momentum to this year and it seems to be swelling up from all aspects of my life:

+ Dashiell is sleeping better as of late. I think this probably has a lot to do with brewing the momentum and my energy to make things happen. To only wake one or two times a night and to have time to start the day with Chris in the morning, have coffee, and just say "Oh hi husband, how are you?" is a game-changer. Thanks, Dash!

+ Chris and I have plans for a date! A date, people! As in just me and Chris for a whole five hours! We are taking advantage of the MLK holiday next week and have a baby sitter for Dash. I love being home in the evenings for our bedtime routine and let's be honest, neither Chris nor I can stay awake much past 9 PM so a day date is the perfect thing for us. I'm not even sure what we'll do yet. We are thinking out to eat and maybe a movie - is there anything out that is worth a few of our precious child-free hours together? (P.S. I have no idea what movies are out. Like at all.)

+ I think it probably has to do with the sleep and with the fact that Chris and I have some planned time together but I'm just feeling that 2014 will be when I start to hit my mama-stride. Now that Dash eats three meals of solid food I'm not quite as on-call for nursing and can actually go on a spontaneous errand or plan a get together with a friend for a few hours at a time. It feels good, really good, to nurture this part of my life. 2013 was about being fully and totally focused on Dashiell and putting myself aside at times. I knew that going in and that's what I feel was best and I wouldn't change it. I was immersed in being a new mama and attending to a newborn. I'm proud of how present I was and of giving my whole self to that. And now I'm excited to enter this next phase of mamahood where Dashiell is gaining independence (but not too much, little guy!) and to find ways to also nurture aspects of my life that require time away from Dash.

+ Erica and I recorded a podcast. It's coming to iTunes and to earbuds near you SOON. And it makes me so happy because it's a podcast that I want to listen to and because we said we wanted to do it and we did it, we are doing it, and how fun that two gals who know nothing (nothing!) about podcasting just made a podcast anyway. It doesn't matter to me if no one but our moms listen to it but I hope you'll like it and I think you will; it involves cocktails in case you need some enticing. Can't wait to share.

+ A story idea I pitched to Remedy Quarterly was accepted for the March publication. I adore this cute food literary magazine and it was a little personal goal of mine to one day be published there. As soon as I got the email that they were accepting ideas for the GROW issue I knew what I would write and somehow just knew it would be accepted. It will be the first time that my creative writing is published in print. Even though it's a little thing I feel so proud already and I think my hands might tremble when I hold my written words in my hands.

+ Busy, busy, busy on the day job work front, too. Deadlines loom for reports that I've authored and the pages are being reviewed by the people at the tippy top of the university. Intimidating but satisfying that the work I do actually goes somewhere and is seen by someone. In other work news I'm finally feeling that I have the responsibility and autonomy I've been craving and my work "social life" is awesome. I have great colleagues. We meet for coffee and for lunch; they bring me Christmas gifts. Heck, I'm even on an Employee Engagement Committee and we organize fridge clean-outs and parties. This compared to jobs I've had where there were few or no people I wanted to spend free time with, where every hour of my day had to be accounted for and any type of appreciation was few and far between. Spending days away from Dash is still tough. I miss him in a way that I can feel in my heart and stomach. But at least the work I do feels meaningful and I have camaraderie. That makes it feel do-able on most days.

I think that just about catches you up. Lots of good and exciting but also lots of CRAZYbrain days when I wonder if someone should stage an intervention. Clearly free time is something that I hate and work my hardest to avoid. I have some ideas about where I'd love for this momentum to take me but for now I just want to focus on keeping it going and not think too far ahead.

Happy Monday, friends!