Back in December I wrote a blog post about adapting to life as a mother and not feeling that isolation and loneliness that some people often mention. I’ve been thinking about this a lot again recently, especially with Cesar taking on another job and being away from home for longer hours again, and with another little one expected any day now. Will I feel more isolated now? Or will I just be even busier? I have my friends that I try to see on a regular basis (and who have been awesome in coming to visit me and Luna these past few months), I made a new friend in Flushing who I hope I can see more of when we have both had our little ones, and hopefully we will all be able to get out and about again as soon as possible.
I love September in NYC. It’s my favourite month. Still hot, but not as humid, the beaches are not packed and you feel like you can breathe much better. The nights slowly start to get longer as you head into October, but it still feels like late summer and doesn’t yet have that nostalgic feeling that October does. I hope we will be able to go to the beach, for picnics in the park, for trips into the city and storytime at the library. I hope that we will be able to enjoy this last month of summer together as a family of 4, little miss Luna being a daredevil at the ocean front with her Daddy and me watching from a nice comfortable spot on the sand (under a parasol) with little miss number 2. I promise her name will be revealed soon, as the doctor said yesterday it cannot be any longer than 2 weeks now. Which, you know, you kind of grind your teeth at and smile grimly because after 40 weeks two more weeks sounds like an eternity. An eternity of achy hips, waddling marathons to the shop on the corner and the joys of wondering if every twinge is the start of labour. I’ve come to the conclusion that my babies just don’t ever want to come out by themselves, so I am now content to wait. And scrub the bathroom floor with bleach again.
So, back to the whole adapting topic, I think that it’s very important to have friends that you can reach out to, people who really get it. Even if you don’t see each other that often, a simple text or call with a story to tell or a question to ask goes a long way. Kids playing together while you chat and eat food or no kids and catching up on all the gossip that has been happening. And also, time to organize nights out here and there, as a couple, or off with friends. Not a break, just an opportunity to see some live music or meet up with other friends you never see. I think now that we have come to the conclusion that two kids is enough for us right now, I am more able to start planning for the next phase, that of being a mother of two little girls and how much fun it is going to be. Beach trips next summer, constant cuddles, shopping trips, teaching them how to read and write, watching movies together, drawing, painting… A thousand fun activities that I can think of. Playing with friends that they have grown up with too!
I remember the only times I really felt sad or isolated in the first few months last year was when a few friends that I had spent the best part of the past 7 years with just kind of… Disappeared. But it’s actually what happens. Life changes happen and some people just don’t follow, they go off on their own path. And that’s fine, it hurts a little, but at the same time you meet others who are on a similar path to you and with whom you bond and become friends. That’s kind of why I have a love/hate relationship with those Timehop and Facebook memory things: sometimes they show photos from fun times years ago and they make you a little nostalgic, and wonder if you should reach out and see how these people are doing… And then you think, why? When did they last reach out to me? Life’s too full of amazingness to worry about this anyway. I am thankful for all the wonderful times spent over the years and I hope everyone I have ever been friends with is as happy and content in their lives as I am. Because, yes, after 37 years on this earth I can say with utmost confidence that I AM happy. And that’s such a wonderful feeling.
So while we try to wait patiently on the arrival of yet another little girl who doesn’t want to be born (and the signs are pointing more and more to the fact that she is unfortunately going to need a little push at 42 weeks), I’m going to enjoy the time we have left with Luna as an only child and continue to wonder about how interesting and fun it is going to be to adapt our little routines and quirks to a newborn’s first weeks. I’m so excited to discover if she will look like Cesar or me or Luna. To watch that little startle reflex again, to document first smiles and rolling over and little mannerisms. To watch Luna grow as a big sister and teach her little sister all of the good and the bad things you can do to really annoy or scare Mummy (jumping on furniture is one right now).
In terms of adapting, I think some just adapt better than others. I’ve never really had an issue with that, moving around to so many different places, discovering new traditions and blending them with my own. Also, feeling out of place. I have discovered that you can feel as out of place in California as you can in your country of origin or in the middle of the Israeli desert. It doesn’t really matter where you are or where you are from, sense of belonging or not don’t seem to be attached to a place or a time. I do know that I have never felt out of place in NYC, although I have in some situations here of course, which is most likely why I am still here. I’m not scared of change; in some cases I even embrace it. You can’t spend your life trying to avoid any type of change, or fighting against it, because in the end it is going to happen whether you like it or not. Being mentally prepared just makes it easier in the long run. Going from a lifestyle of bartending and restaurant managing and drinking and running around like a crazy person to that of a stay at home freelance writing mother was strangely easy. I doubt adding another little one to the mix is going to be a huge change. Or maybe it will, and then we will just adapt to that.
While I am in this period of limbo between 40 and 42 weeks I shall just finish rewatching Call the Midwife (wishing that season 4 were on Netflix already), scrub things again (as they are already not as clean as they were last time I scrubbed), and not do much else because even walking has become difficult. Oh and if you feel like asking where the baby is, please don’t. She’s still in my womb until further notice.