Sunday, January 30, 2011

Schedule, Interrupted

Last night I was struck by a couple of memories and then felt so grateful that there is calm in place of where there was so much worry.

My friend’s daughter was having a birthday party. I needed to take my son to the party, stay for a little while, meet some other friends for dinner, and then we were off as a whole family to a hockey game.

Last year, we did this same exact thing – attended the birthday party before a hockey game. Except, last year, I was more frantic! I was in a rush. I was nervous about sticking to Parker’s SCHEDULE. I was afraid he would be too hungry before we left the birthday party and ran off to dinner and hockey. I had to make sure I carried enough baby stuff around for all three events. I remember the anxiousness and nervousness of all the night’s events.

Last night, I was not nervous for any of it. I knew we would have a good time wherever we went. We went to the party. I relaxed and talked with people. Parker played.

I saw a new mother there with her little newborn baby in a carrier. The baby was sleeping. I remember taking my own newborn to a party once. I was, again, NERVOUS the whole time, ready to murder anyone who threatened to wake him up. I was afraid he would wake and cry and everyone would watch as I tried to console him. I was afraid I would have to put down the cake and tend to him instead of having a delicious moment to myself.

We left the party and met my husband at another friend’s house where they were eating dinner and getting ready for the hockey game. Parker and I got there, sat and ate our own dinner, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves for a little bit.

At the hockey game, near the end of the game, I looked for the clock in the stadium to check the time. And, yet again, I was struck with ANOTHER memory that was a tell-tale sign of how far we’ve come. When we first started bringing Parker to hockey games, my eyes were always GLUED to the clock. I was NERVOUS about keeping him up to late. I would take him home early from the game so that the bed time SCHEDULE could be followed.

Last night, we stayed for the whole game without a worry about the SCHEDULE. We knew that everything was GOING TO BE ALRIGHT. We were just hanging out, enjoying ourselves, and I only looked for the clock because I was curious.

Those who know me will be shocked by the following tid-bit of information. Parker never even had a nap yesterday! GASP! He was too excited for hockey (he LOVES it), and never ended up sleeping. In the past, I would have been FREAKING out. I would have WORRIED about him being cranky, not being able to go to hockey, and a messed-up SCHEDULE.

Last night, it didn’t worry me. He is at an age where if a nap is occasionally skipped, it’s ALL GOING TO BE ALRIGHT.

Whew. We’ve come a long way, baby. And, no, this does not mean it is time for another one. We are just ENJOYING ourselves. Hanging out. Checking the clock only if we’re curious.

31 comments:

Actuary Mom said...

I know exactly what you are talking about!! I love it right now... it is so much easier knowing you can be flexible, feed them whatever you are eating, it just makes life so much more enjoyable! Although I think I will be much more laid back with the schedule with baby #2. I was always so concerned that everything would derail if we deviated, but when we deviated nothing terrible happened. Everything was okay.

SherilinR said...

i tried to stay pretty structured about naps & food & stuff too, but it sure is nice when they get old enough that they can go & do without nearly as much trouble or stress. i only have one & she's 8 now & it's hard to even remember now how stressed i was when we missed naptime 7 years ago. though, there are days when i would LOVE to get a daily nap again!

Oddyoddyo13 said...

And exhale. I admit, I don't know what that's like, but I can imagine. It's probably crazy. Which is why kids get older-so parents can breathe. :)

JD said...

I am so much more relaxed about schedules now, too - but with my second kid. I am highly impressed you've achieved this with your first. And jealous. ;-)

Stephanie in Suburbia said...

I've never gotten too anxious about schedules, although right now Wee 'Burb isn't really a crabby kid. If she doesn't get sleep, she just gets snuggly or a little punchy. She's a pretty "go with the flow" kind of kid. But as she gets older, I think this will become more of an issue with tantrums and such.

Tenille @ Help!Mum said...

We've had a similar change in our house too. I think its partly that we grow as parents and realise that our little ones aren't quite as fragile as we'd thought, and partly that our little ones grow up and, in some ways, become easier to deal with. It's nice, isn't it?

Ratz said...

Now I don't have a child to say that but I can agree with the nervousness and stuff... It is seriously a wonder as to how much far we come from our own selves... Great post Kristy... I am prepared :-D

Langdowns said...

Woot woot!!!! Ok. Now I had a very similar conversation on Australia Day. I was sitting around the pool without actually having to be IN THE POOL and on 100% alert the whole time. My kids are now 11 and 7. I know it's not quite the same ... but similar. I was able to sit down and have a few drinks without being all eagle eye and constantly by their side. Man. What a good feeling that was. But then again ..... not so good ... 'cause soon they won't need me at all. Oh dear. The conundrum. The good news and the bad news. Oh dear ...
Sorry. I digress. 3 cheers for you!

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blueviolet said...

Yes, I used to totally freak out over the slightest bit of an upset schedule with my first one. What is our problem? It's so nice that we eventually learn to relax! :)

chele said...

Ain't it great? I was totally into schedules when my son was little. When my daughter came along, I knew better.

Katie said...

The best moment is the one that you realize that you are {gasp} relaxed and you don't even feel a bit guilty about it. One of my favorite motherhood milestones!
Go you. (And Parker) :)

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

I have NO idea what this is like. Take deep breaths!

Glen said...

Ah yes, those first tentative steps away from baby's routine - scary stuff :-)

Melissa B. said...

And then they grow up, and you start worrying again. Enjoy this time...cherish it!

TV's Take said...

Ha! I am you - only last year. Actually we are SLOWLY leaving panic land and entering into a more 'hey this is fun' atmosphere.

Amy said...

We are there too. It's wonderful, isn't it:)

MultitaskMumma said...

I can't wait for the day when a skipped nap isn't a big deal. I'm still living in panic but try to go with the flow as much as possible for my daughters sake.

Penny said...

I think that means that Parker is growing up. Now I have to worry if Bob gets his nap or not. What's wrong with that picture?

jazzygal said...

Oh, I remember those days well! People used to laugh at me I was so caught up with schedules and cleaning bottles etc! It's good that you are now getting the chance to really enjoy trips out with your son :-)

xx Jazzy

Melissa said...

OMG I can totally relate! I'm much calmer with my toddler than I was my teen but I do the same things - overpack and stress. And I'm always scared to leave the house if he hasn't had a nap. I'm doing better, trying to improve all the time. So hard, isn't it?

Sue said...

Yes. This was me as well. Not sure if it was the passing of time or the arrival of more children that chilled me out. Whatever the reason, I, too, am better for it.

Mommyfriend Lori said...

I could relate with every word of this post. With baby #2, I'm like "Whatever" and that is the opposite of the mother I was with my first. It's such an easier way to be. Wish I understood that in the beginning of this motherhood adventure!

letmestartbysaying said...

It is freeing to know when to let go as a parent. Bravo! Enjoy!

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