Three-and-a-half glorious hours

By Published On: November 12th, 2014

Sometime during the last few weeks I feel like a […]

Sometime during the last few weeks I feel like a calm has settled over our house. Life with a giggly and wiggly 6-month-old is proving to be pretty darn doable. It’s more than doable, actually; it’s awesome.
McKinley_GoodMorningBea_11-12-14A huge part of my excitement stems from Bea’s new routine. I mean, not so much the waking up at night part (because, yeah, that definitely still happens), but I’m loving the part that means having a sturdier, more alert, less perpetually hungry baby to hang out with.
Bea nursed every 2.5 hours during the day for a really long time. I didn’t always realize it when I was “in the fog,” but squeezing in anything—chores, errands, dinner, whatever—is a challenge when you’re responsible for providing seven or more private dining sessions every day.
This isn’t a knock against breastfeeding because on the whole it’s a wonderful experience. But, positives aside, I think all nursing and pumping mamas can agree that sometimes you feel like a slave to the clock. Every couple of hours, you have to drop everything to sit down, undress, and wait quietly while your wee one feasts off of you. It’s incredible—and incredibly draining.
Then, all of the sudden, it changes. Just in the past month, Bea has dropped a few feedings—as in, more than one. The before-bed feeding? Gone. The mid-afternoon and mid-morning feedings? No more! Now she goes every 3.5 hours between nursing.
The amount of time that leaves is mind blowing—at least it is for someone who has gotten used to happily chasing her tail in the endless eat-poop-nap-repeat cycle that is infancy.
Of course most of this extra “free” time is filled with other Bea-centric activities—solids feeding and book reading, toy playing and peekaboo-ing—but these longer stretches between nursing means more awake time, which ultimately leads to longer naps, and that means I can get stuff checked off my to-do list.
It’s amazing what an hour of fully clothed freedom can do for a person. I can make it on a complete round of errands and back without having to stop to feed Bea in the Target parking lot. I don’t always have to get up at 4 a.m. to write articles. I can get all of our towels washed, dried and put away before Andy is forced to dry off with a pillowcase. Now, if I could just remember to put our trash out on the correct day, I would be on top of the world.