October 21, 2014
"The world no longer revolves around the sun."
That's what my dad says.
Our entire lives revolved around his house—the sun. I'd be there by 7:00am, sometimes earlier, to have a coffee with my parents before hopping on the treadmill for my daily workout. I'd have lunch there a few times a week while working from their couch, and family dinners happened pretty frequently, as well. I spent more waking overs at their house than at mine. Ever after I moved out, I always felt their house was an extension of my new one—still very much mine.
That ended when the baby was born. He's basically the biggest movie star who ever lived, attracting more visitors and photos than a celebrity at Chateau Marmont. Every day, our families descended upon our house to catch a glimpse of our beautiful boy and snap photos of him with their iPhones. Some mornings, my mom was here before 7:00am, ready to do her part in the relay race that is caring for a newborn. What was once a quiet house suddenly became a boisterous and hectic home.
* * *
"You're no longer the boss."
That's what the pediatrician says.
I remember what it felt like to have a boss. Mostly, it meant fear. Fear of not doing a good enough job. Fear of pushing too far if I took a long lunch. Fear of getting unexpectedly kicked to the curb. Fear of the hammer cracking down at any moment—could be the next moment.
It's been a while since I've had a boss. Three years, to be exact. Three years since I decided to call my own shots—without a clue as to what shots to call. But what the pediatrician says is true, and the baby seems to have taken to the new role well. There's no fear, no hammer with this boss. Just love—and maybe the occasional impending doom of being up before the sunrise.
* * *
"I don't remember."
That's what I said.
In the hot air balloon of my physical pain, my mind does an incredible job of keeping the flame strong. Up and up and up the balloon goes, and I wonder, "How much further will this sucker fly?"
A cousin tells me I was in horrible pain and crying when she came to see me to the hospital. JJ tells me I passed out in the delivery room. A friend tells me I looked a mess for hours and hours after the labor was over. I know I was in pain, but I do not remember. My doctor tells me I was a champ, and I *do* remember not believing him.
The hot air balloon descended quickly. By the next day, I felt like myself again. I looked down at my toes and said, "Hey, it's been a while." I rolled over and slept—gasp!—on my belly. I walked to the back of my closet and rescued everything that'd been ignored for months, including my jump rope. I shoved all my pregnancy gear in a plastic bin and heaved up to the top shelf. I was back.
Yes, the world now revolves around our house—a house run by a boss less than 25 inches tall. Since I don't recall the pain of it, maybe I'll have a million more.