Lately, things have been easy.
There, I said it. After almost two years of taking care of Sasha—changing diapers, feeding, playing, you know, the whole enchilada—we’ve really settled into a good rhythm. Up at 6:45 without too much trouble, diaper change, bottle of milk, getting dressed, hugs and kisses and she’s off to preschool with her mom. I work all day, bike over the Manhattan Bridge to pick her up at 5:30, she points out some orange lights and the water of the East River, and when we get back into our neighborhood we sing the alphabet song or “Old MacDonald.” Playtime, bath, a little “Yo Gabba Gabba!” and then we brush teeth, read some books, and put Sasha to bed. It’s all so… normal.
I’m not saying there aren’t hiccups. Yesterday, on the way home, Sasha and I stopped to buy groceries for dinner, and she refused to get back on the bike. Frustrating, but eventually I got her in. What I’m saying is that these hiccups are just hiccups. They don’t make me question my ability to effectively parent, or drive me nuts with repressed rage.
Perhaps this is because I have never really had a daily rhythm in my life. I’ve spent most of the past 36 years improvising every single day, with virtually no set times for anything. I slept late, stayed up late, lived randomly. Constant travel doesn’t exactly regularie things. Now I’m getting up before 7 most days (sometimes, if Jean is feeling kind, I doze till 7:30), and it feels natural. I might even say I like it.
But I don’t count on it to continue forever. Sasha will get difficult again, and make us feel like we’re powerless to shape her personality and secure her future. And then that 6:45 wake-up will come to feel like a burden—a hiccup that won’t go away. But till then I’m trying to enjoy this strange and pleasant equilibrium. I just hope Sasha enjoys it too.