Sunday, October 3, 2010

Monday Morning Quarterback

An old friend recently posted the best status update I've seen in awhile.
Her Facebook page read, "I need a wife."
Her male friends had a field day with this one. Just the thought of this cute little mama with a wife gave them a lot to think about.
But my friend rained on their parade pretty quickly, explaining that she needed a wife to help her with all of her unglamorous mommy duties, including but not limited to scraping poop and puke off of baby onesies... Which is pretty much how I started my weekend.
Strip the crib, scrub the mattress pad, spray some Oxy, start a load of laundry.
Strip the crib, scrub the mattress pad, spray some Oxy... you get the picture.

I may not have a wife to help with the cleaning, but I do have Doug, who took Mackenzie downstairs after my first two rounds of "Scrape the Poo" so I could catch a few more Zs.

Our weekends used to entail sleeping in, having a big breakfast, and basically succumbing to the living room couch and our DVR.
Now we're up at sunrise with Mackenzie between us in bed, rubbing the sleepiness out of our eyes as we watch our daughter discover her fingers and toes.  The next few hours resemble a choreographed dance in which we take turns occupying the baby, doing housework, paying bills, cutting coupons, going to the grocery store, and showering.

This particular weekend I started to notice that Doug was taking a more active role in our dance, and it totally caught me off guard.
Was he trying to knock me out of the lead?
See, Mackenzie and I have had a nice duet going for much of the last four months. We're together 24/7 and have our own little routine that we've become accustomed to.
So I'm a little sensitive to anyone who tries to step in and offer advice as if they know better than I do.

"Can I make a recommendation?" Doug asked so many times I stopped counting.

"Maybe you should feed her now, then wait until she digests, and then dress her in clean clothes." (DUH)

"Oh, there's nothing wrong with her ear, she's always rubbed it like that."

"You may want to give her a bath in the tub next time."

"Did you ever think she might be cold since you have the windows open?"

I fired back at each comment with the stink eye, promising to file these very helpful suggestions away for future use.

It's easy playing Monday Morning Quarterback.
Who are you to waltz right in and criticize my calls?
I'd like to see you go through the blood, sweat, and tears every day.

I said as much to Doug recently and regretted it almost instantly.
I implied that my TV producer husband couldn't handle the day-to-day stress of raising a baby... that he wasn't cut out for it... that he would fail as a mother, as a wife.

I've thought back to the first two weeks of Mackenzie's life, when my post C-section body was prohibited from climbing stairs or lifting anything heavy...
When Doug braved the breastfeeding section of Buy Buy Baby to get me nursing bras and brought me breakfast in bed...
How he taught me to fasten the car seat and unfold the stroller.
In fact, for that entire first month I was pretty much nothing but a big boob for the baby. I was completely helpless in all other aspects. I had a slow physical recovery and was mentally and emotionally drained.
Doug was the one who had the persistence and patience to get through the sleepless nights.
And in the mornings he spent countless hours rocking Mackenzie to the sound of the World Cup vuvuzelas while I got some rest.
When he returned to work at the end of his paternity leave I got my wife...
My mother came to stay for a week and helped with everything from laundry, to cooking, to basic baby care.
My second wife followed.
My sister spent the next five days helping out around the house and taking care of Mackenzie.

That all seems like decades ago.

Mackenzie and I are our own little team now.
We know the drill and have our plays memorized.

But that's not to say I can't learn a thing or two from Doug.
After all, when I was the one limited to a hospital bed he was the one changing the first few diapers (the meconium poops he dubbed "pudding volcanoes")
He was the one who flicked off the umbilical cord scab (I had to turn the other way).
He was the one I called for help the first time I needed to adjust the car seat straps (I almost had a panic attack when I accidentally tightened the harness too much and nearly suffocated the baby).
He was the one who held Mackenzie the first time she cried, the first time she was examined, the first time she opened her eyes.

Sooooooo, maybe I'll get a wife for Christmas!!!!
And maybe she'll handle the 3 a.m. feedings, the screaming fits, and the poo tsunamis.

For now, I'll take my Monday Morning Quarterback and follow his lead...

He's gotten me this far. And for that, I thank him.

1 comment:

  1. well i am home sick and just cruising the web and started reading this.......and let me tell you ....i love you and your blog. this brought back many memories of raising the girls. it seems like you and Mackenzie are getting into a mommy / princess groove....stay strong mom - you ROCK!