I’m a working single mom!

I have officially survived my first two weeks back at work. I was cautiously optimistic that Arya would transition well. She goes to daycare at my gym with a random assortment of people and I leave her with several of my friends regularly. But, this is definitely the longest stretch of time we have been apart and it is in a new environment with lots of strange people so the possibility of her freaking out was still there. On the first day I’m sure she was picking up on my nervousness because she seemed a little more sensitive than usual. It also didn’t help that she woke up with her first cold ever. She was extra clingy when I took her out of the crib and immediately fell asleep in my arms. I snuggled her in my bed and tried not to cry. But when I dropped her off she seemed fine and even smiled at the teacher that took her from me.

We did a quick five hour day and they said she was fine and even napped twice. They use an app that gives you constant updates on feedings, naps, and diaper changes and they even sent a bunch of pictures. It was really reassuring and helped me to relax and focus on my first day of work.

It was definitely weird being back at my job after six months off . But my coworkers are awesome and everyone kept asking about Arya and telling me how happy they were that I was back. They even had a bunch of treats in my honor.

We have since settled into a good rhythm and everything is going well so far. Having daycare two blocks from my house and a very flexible work schedule has been key. And I feel… really happy and content about my life right now. I’m much mite present when I’m with Arya and she goes down early enough that I still have a few hours to myself at night. And I’ve even become way more efficient at work because I need to get everything done in the 7.5 hours I’m there.

Unfortunately, on the Friday of our first week of daycare/work I came down with a terrible cold and Arya’s seemed to get worse. Arya woke up at 4am Saturday morning and didn’t sleep for more than 10 minutes until 6pm that night. I was delirious and it was so so hard but I got through it- although we didn’t leave the house for two days.

Here are some cute pictures of her at daycare:

More travel!

Things have been a whirlwind and my maternity leave is quickly coming to an end. We took a two day trip to Las Vegas to stay with a friend, her partner, and their one year old in a huge suite booked for a work trip. I watched both kids so they could celebrate a birthday and ( shockingly) it was really hard. I got both kids down at the same time and was all ” this isn’t too hard.” But then they both woke up screaming and was faced with the dilemma of how to comfort a screaming toddler and baby at the same time. I finally settled on rocking Arya in the stroller while holding the toddler. Just when they finally calmed down, my friends came home and their toddler fell into their arms immediately becoming a crying, blubbering, mess. This did not instill confidence in my already super anxious friend ( I’m one of the only people she will let babysit).

Despite Las Vegas being the antithesis of ” baby friendly” we had a pretty good time walking around and going to the pool. For an inexplicable reason, most of them were really shallow ( like 10 inches deep). This was perfect for some baby swimming ( sorry fancy hotel guests hoping to have a relaxing and sophisticated day at your super fancy pool).

And Arya started solids and is a vigorous and enthusiastic eater- just like her mama.

Baby and cat cuteness

It’s no secret that the cats have not been too pleased with Arya moving in. They have been needy, weird, and acting out. Hedwig actually took a poop on the living room carpet while I was watching TV with a friend yesterday. I took this as the cat equivalent of the middle finger. But, the cats are definitely interacting with her more. I’m not sure this means they are warming up to her (especially given Hedwig’s recent transgressions) but they sure make for some adorable pictures:

Holy S$&t!

Arya had her four month checkup yesterday. She is in the 20th percentile for weight and height and doctor said she is doing great overall and met all of her milestones. They gave her the second set of vaccinations and she was as upset as you would expect. I gave her some Tylenol when we got home and she zonked out and slept and slept and …. slept for fourteen hours straight! I’m still in shock. I checked on her a million times convinced something was wrong but she woke up with a huge, satisfied smile. And she finally noticed one of the cats today:

6 more weeks..!

I go back to work in six weeks! Six months felt like a lifetime before I had Arya but the cliche is right- it goes by super fast. I’m kind of looking forward to using my brain in different ways again but it’s going to be such a huge adjustment. I was holding Arya this morning thinking about leaving her in daycare and I started tearing up.

I’m super excited I found an affordable-ish daycare two blocks from home but I do wish they were a little more hands on regarding the transition process. They are so laid back that it makes me slightly worried. But I would probably be worried no matter what so I’m trying to just enjoy this last six weeks and not create horror scenarios in my head about what could possibly happen to her in daycare.

In other news, Arya rocked our six hour cross country flight. She literally didn’t make more than a peep and slept 80% of the time. Strangers complimented us and I felt like a proud mama. People were also super great and offered help constantly. Here are a few pictures of our journey:

Family

We had a bit of an adventure after arriving in New York on Tuesday. We did miss our connection and when I went to the desk to rebook our flight it was 50 people long so I went into the first class lounge hoping they would let us in. Thank god I did because we were helped right away and they gave us a hotel, a taxi voucher to the hotel, and a food voucher even though they weren’t obligated to do it because the delay was due to weather. They were also able to rebook is for the next day. Originally, not until 7pm but she pulled some strings and got us on an earlier flight. People definitely want to help a solo mom with a baby- at least in this instance.

They attempted to pull our luggage so I could get extra formula and diapers but after waiting an hour and being told it would be several more at 12:30 AM, I decided to buy some formula the next morning instead. I was reassured by someone that our luggage would be put back in the hold for our flight but I was skeptical.

The night in the hotel was rough. They didn’t have a crib so I made a pillow barricade on the bed but I was so nervous I barely slept. Arya didn’t do much better and at 6 am I put her in the stroller and wheeled her to sleep and we both slept for three hours. Then we had to take a Lyft to Walgreens for formula and it was about 95 degrees and 100 percent humidity. I was completely soaked with sweat when we got to the airport.

When we got to the airport I asked to be let off in baggage claim in order to make sure my bag was where it was supposed to be because we would be screwed without it. I had a feeling it might not be on the flight, and I was right. I spent 45 minutes being bounced all over and then this really nice airline employee was like: ” you can’t make this woman with a baby do this!” And she helped me find my bag and got us to the flight.

The woman who sat next to us on the plane looked at Arya and proclaimed: ” she smells like cheese!” She also told me that I couldn’t ask for a better seat mate because she loves kids and taught preschool for 10 years. Then she complained about the other kids on the flight, loudly and within earshot of their parents. I spent the ( luckily short) flight pretending to sleep so she would stop talking to me and to make it clear to the other parents that we were not traveling together.

We spent the first half of the trip at my sister’s house with my parents. We mostly swam and relaxed in the pool because it was super hot. It was so nice to have help and I was able to take some naps and go out by myself- such a luxury. On one of the days we picked strawberries and raspberries at a nearby farm. Everyone got into it- even my mom. The fields smelled like jam and the berries were super sweet. And Arya was chill and slept most of the time we were there. It as such a perfect upstate New York summer day.

I also got to see some friends- including my best friend who drove up from New York to meet Arya. I really wish we lived in the same city!

It was really hard to see my sister say goodbye to Arya. For some of the car ride I even ( briefly) contemplated moving back to New York.

Buffalo was pretty relaxing. We just hung out at my parent’s house and had lots of visitors. It was super great to see family, but we had a ton of visitors. And I found myself stressing that Arya would be ” good” while people were around. Arya is a really chill baby- but she is a baby and she is getting more aware of the world and her own likes/dislikes. She definitely had some meltdowns and wasn’t always down to be held by every single person who visited. I found myself apologizing a lot which is ridiculous because no one can expect a baby to be easygoing all of the time. I think some of this stress comes from being a single mom by choice and some feelings that I have to prove myself capable of raising a baby alone.

I also noticed that my mom was much more difficult when we were staying at her house. She argued with me a lot more about parenting stuff- mainly she thought the baby was always cold even though it was like 90 degrees out. I felt myself reverting back to feeling 16.

Despite this, we had a great time. And Arya rolled over for the first time! It was actually a back to front roll and it was extra special because me and my parents all saw it. Now she seems to have also mastered the front to back. No more leaving her on my bed or the couch for ” just a minute.”

My parents were so so sad to say goodbye to Arya and it just killed me. I definitely think we will be making the trip a lot more.

Right now we are on a four hour layover in Boston ( what was I thinking?) Arya smelt tbd while flight and so far has been snoozing away for the past two hours in the airport. Cross your fingers that this continues..

On the road again

We are heading to NY for two weeks with my family. Arya was a fabulous traveler when we meant to New Mexico but a cross country flight is a whole different ball of wax ( such a gross expression), so I’m crossing my fingers and toes she is ok.

Yesterday, I got an email from United asking if we wanted to take advantage of a promotion and switch to business class. I looked at it out of curiosity and it was about 1/4 of the price I expected it to be. I decided to go for it because hey- infant cross country travel is no joke.

Now we are at the airport in the fancy first class lounge. Our flight is delayed and we may be spending the night in New York City but I’m trying not to worry too much until I have to.

I brought a few 8 ounce bottles of pre-mixed formula and airport security was freaking out- even though formula is supposed to be exempt from the three ounce rule. They wanted me to open them- which completely defeats the purpose because they would go bad. So they decided I could leave them closed but they had to subject me to a complete pat down and search every inch of our carry on bags. Arya found this to be super entertaining- but I didn’t: