What do you even DO all day?

written by Nicole Doliner

2:04a: Nolan wakes me up out of my deep sleep. I pop a pacifier in his mouth.
2:06a: He keeps making noises, so I nurse him for 15 minutes despite the intense pain I feel because of his tongue tie reattaching. It’s just easier than making a bottle.
4:17a: I wake up from a weird dream about Colin Jost to phantom baby cries. The baby is fast asleep. My husband mumbles in his sleep, and it takes me a good 10 minutes to realize he didn’t say an actual word and for me to fall back asleep.
6:58a: Nolan is babbling to himself, so I take him out of the bassinet and put him onto our bed to nurse, pull at his dad’s beard, and spit up all over the bedsheets.
7:23a: Finally out of bed, we change his very heavy overnight diaper, then head down to the playroom so I can eat breakfast (peanut butter on some kind of carb and a can of Diet Coke) and watch clips of Seth Meyers & Stephen Colbert from the night before while Nolan is babbling in his play gym.
8:13a: Nolan is tired of his gym, so I give him a bottle while my husband rushes around to get himself ready for work. I turn on Netflix.
8:38a: Nolan has fallen asleep on me. I soak up the cuddles while a tumbleweed of dog hair rolls by the TV stand and I mentally add “vacuum” to my never-ending list of stuff to do around the house.
9:14a: Nolan wakes up and promptly fusses until he spits up on me.
9:17a: I hop in the shower while he’s in a portable bassinet on the floor. He’s usually content until I put shampoo in my hair, at which point there is no turning back and my relaxing shower becomes a race.
9:29a: Now that we’re dressed and ready to go, I spend five minutes packing & repacking the diaper bag with more formula, breast milk, toys, and diapers than we could possibly need at a Mommy & Me group surrounded by other moms who also have way too much stuff.
9:58a: My anxiety makes me early because I don’t want to look like a hot mess mom. I sit down on the floor and pretend that I am comfortable and that my legs won’t fall asleep at least five times in the next 90 minutes.
11:37a: Group is over and yet again, I realize that Nolan is one of the oldest kids here at five months old. This is because maternity leave in this country is a goddamn joke and everyone needs to go back to work way too soon. I just want to make a friend.
12:09p: I find myself in Qdoba for the third time over the past 14 days, scarfing down a burrito before Nolan wakes up from his car snooze.
12:10p: Nolan wakes up from his car snooze and stares angrily at my burrito.
12:15p: Drive to Target for nothing in particular, just a place to walk around in this cold November Boston weather, but end up spending $89 on *shrug.*
1:34p: Arrive home and give Nolan a bottle.
1:45p: Attempt number 1 at naptime. Nolan has been changed and fed, and I nurse him for another 20 minutes until he dozes. I move him to the bassinet and lay down myself.
2:15p: Naptime is over. I cry because I am exhausted and continue to attempt to get him to nap. My attempts are in vain, but they last another hour.
3:30p: We come downstairs to eat, play, and change diapers ad infinitum, while I send increasingly annoying texts to my husband to tell him to come home from work.
6:00p: My husband arrives home to find us both on the couch, staring at Netflix. Nolan is all smiles and I am drained. Nolan giggles for my husband and the two of them goof around on the play mat for a half hour.
6:34p: My husband does bedtime, so they head upstairs. I creepily hover like a scrub nurse, helping with diaper changes for the squirmy baby. Finally my husband shoos me downstairs.
6:50p: I grab a book, my gratitude journal and a glass of wine, and finally enjoy some me time. I fold some laundry, scarf down a quick dinner (probably frozen pizza or tacos), and head up to bed after playing a round of HQ Trivia at 9pm. My husband is on Nolan duty until midnight and will feed him when he inevitably wakes up immediately after I put my head on the pillow at 9:15p.