Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A day of boobies and babies

I had a day full of boobies and babies yesterday, and honestly, it was exhausting!

I was shadowing at the breastfeeding clinic on campus, each appointment being an hour long, and I was taken on a trip through memory lane...

Maybe my exhaustion was due to the fact that the rooms were so warm, with nice sunlight beaming in, and having to see 6 patients back to back... but I think it was more than that. Watching the interaction of the mother (or both parents) with each infant, I was reminded of how much love there is with a new family addition, but also how much work babies are.

Granted, when I stepped into the room to see the first "brand-new" baby of the day (literally only days old), my heart just melted and I could feel a little tug on my ovaries. But in truth, the novelty of a cute little baby wears off as soon as you realize it's a 24-hour job. Actually, I think it's more than that.

When someone says that being a mother is a full-time job, I laugh inside, because really, it's like having 3 full-time jobs. You are on-call 24-hours a day. And you can't always delegate to other staff/team members. They don't have all the prerequisites including boobies full of milk. At the same time, the business that you are in requires a constant giving of yourself. You physically, mentally and emotionally have to share your entire self with little baby.

When baby sleeps, you sleep - not the other way around. Baby doesn't know about your morning yoga routine. If you want to eat, baby doesn't care, you have to feed it first. And don't forget about the language barrier! Baby doesn't speak yet so you have to learn baby-language via different cries, faces, squirminess.

And babies are not like puppies... you can't train them to poo outside. Nor can you use litter boxes. You must attend to every single wet diaper or bowel movement, and unlike most grownups, babies can poo ALL THE TIME. They can also squirt you with urine if you leave your guard down. They can't even grasp the concept that squirting pee at you is kinda funny. So really that whole moment is lost on them.

Next you have to figure out what to do with all those dirty diapers. I mean, yes, you can use cloth, but now you have to deal with the poo on a whole other level and wash those cloth diapers (who am I kidding... this is probably what I'll end up doing one day). If you choose to go disposable, now you have to figure out how to work the Diaper Genie - which isn't as magical as it sounds. Really, I had the hardest time figuring it out and once I did,  I realized that all it did was make long strings of diaper sausages.

But babies are like puppies in the fact that they are super cute, they require lots of love and you need to take them on walks. Unfortunately, when they are a few years old, they still are not strong enough to pull you down the street on your rollerblades.

So all in all, I had an amazing experience yesterday, but I know that at this time in my life, there's no way I could handle a mini-me. I give full credit to my friends and peers who are at that right time in their life, because I remember what it was like helping my sister with her little one when we lived together.

Maybe I will start with something small... but I can't quite think of an animal that is small, and not ugly (like a fish), or that is quiet (unlike a bird) or that doesn't poop all the time... hmm... Okay, maybe I'll just borrow other people's babies for like 5 minutes and then give them back.