30 April 2009

One Year Later

Time sure does fly, doesn't it?

Last year at this time I was huge, uncomfortable, and off work early due to minor complications with the pregnancy. I was hoping for an early birth, since I was terrified of going over and being induced. I always said I felt I would go early but expected to be late. I was right, and "Fred" was born on May 9, 2008 at 11:11 AM. "Fred" became Delilah as soon as Daddy announced "It's a girl!" and chased her off into the back room to watch them weigh her and check her lungs.

To be honest, during my whole pregnancy I was terrified of the thought of labour and birth. I made the biggest mistake in my life when I went to those childbirth classes. I didn't learn anything, but I sure did get some bad visuals. Seriously-I know how babies come out. I don't need to see it. Those images did more to freak me out and put me in a bad headspace than everything combined.

Anyhow, moving on...

This last year has been amazing, with some really hard parts as well as the most amazing, love-filled, joyous moments. It doesn't matter what's going on, how frustrated or tired or whatever I'm feeling, when Delilah looks at me and smiles, or comes up and gives me a hug, it all goes away. My heart fills up with the most agonizing love I've ever felt in my life.

It's hard to believe that my baby is almost a year old. She's walking, using American Sign Language, and has a few spoken words (mum, da, dog, hot). She has 8 teeth with a couple more trying to make it through, and weighs just over 20 pounds. Her feet are just over 4 inches long, which make them a little small for her age (size 4), and is wearing 12-18 shirts for the arm length while she can still wear 6-12 month pants. She rouses in the middle of the night lately and turns sideways, kicking or karate chopping one or both of us. Ben gets more sleep than I. She has slept every night of her life with me and her dad, except during nights when he chose to sleep on the couch (translation: fell asleep while watching tv and refused to come to bed) or when he was out of town visiting friends.

D has a friend, A, who is only 3 days older than D. Happy Early Birthday A! It's been interesting to see how the two of them develop compared to each other. It was hilarious when they grew the same teeth in the same order: the bottom two central incisors, followed by the upper 4 (central incisors plus lateral incisors), followed by the bottom left lateral incisor, followed by the bottom right lateral incisor...how strange is that?

Delilah loves our new dog Harley. She loves to pet (hit, pull hair, poke, bash with various toys) and lay down with him on his bed. She also loves to kiss him and be kissed by him, much to my chagrin-I think it's disgusting, but what can you do? Remove the dog's tongue? Anyway, we're so fortunate to have found a dog who not only LIKES kids, but is so tolerant that he just lays there when Delilah is abusing him. We tell him every day how good he is!

Now that Delilah is really starting to play and enjoy toys, I'm starting to get excited about the upcoming years when we can play dress up, do art activities, and much more. I know you're not supposed to rush things, but I am really looking forward to all the activities we'll do together. At the same time, I wish things would slow down, that time could stop, just for a while, so we could better enjoy this moment in time. I already miss holding an infant, and sometimes regret that we aren't having any more, but I think about all the reasons we only want one: extra attention D will get because she's an only, we'll have more money to do more fun stuff, and we'll never have divided attention or "favourites". D will always be OUR girl, our one and only baby. I guess I'll just live vicariously through other people when they have babies.

With my recent resignation from my full-time, secure position, I am scared sometimes about my decision, especially in this economy. I read an article today on how, sometimes, your job actually costs you just about as much as you make, so living without it isn't actually as hard as you'd think. Consider this:
Usually, parents find out that the cost of working is quite close to what they make. To see if this might fit you, consider the following. If both parents are working, there are always extra expenses. Take your lowest income. Then, subtract the amount you spend in gas to travel to that job. Also subtract how much you spend on drinks, meals at and to or from your job. If you pay for daycare or an after school program, subtract that amount from your income. Now consider the amount of money that you spend on clothing or shoes for that job. Next, start paying attention to the amount of money that you spend on items that you really don’t need and items out of guilt for the time you miss with your children. Now, consider how much less you might spend on food if you were making less prepackaged, on the go, and convenience foods. Most generally, when all is said and done, parents find that extra income is nearly spent just in maintaining that job. (quote from here)

When I think about it THAT way, I consider the cost of transportation (either bus or car), lunch costs, coffee costs, soda pop, all the unnecessary expenditure at Shoppers Drug Mart (nearby), unnecessary takeout lunch purchases, etc. Add in the cost of daycare (anywhere from $30 a day to $800 a month) and the benefits of working seem to pale in comparison. Plus, I consider the BIGGEST cost, my time. I wouldn't be able to see Delilah grow up, she'd be practically raised by someone else, and my heart would break every time I left her in someone else's care. It's TOTALLY not worth it.


Stacy said...

I agree with you on the stay at home mom issue...now to convince my husband of that....that's the real challenge...

And as for the infant withdrawal...you can live through me vicariously in about ten years when my student loan is paid off!

Berry said...

10 years!
Honey, if you wait "until we have more money"-you'll never have kids. Seriously. Because after the loans, you'll have a new car, a house, whatever. Just do it. You find the money.
Besides, if you use cloth diapers and wipes and breastfeed, you'll have practically NO cost other than clothes-which many family members and friends will supply for you.

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