Up all night (not me mind you)

Who ever said that par­ent­ing gets eas­i­er with each addi­tion­al kid was out of their frakin’ minds. Pri­or to the arrival of each kid, some well mean­ing but delu­sion­al1 acquit­tance would slap my back and tell me that this one would be eas­i­er. If any­thing, I have found that man­ag­ing each new bun­dle of unbear­able joy has in fact been hard­er and hard­er. I think the fal­la­cy is think­ing that now that we’re expe­ri­enced par­ents we won’t go through the same mis­takes that noob par­ents do, but that’s not true.2

With each new kid, you again remem­ber at three in the morn­ing that one trick you had for­got­ten that sud­den­ly shunts the baby back down into a qui­et bliss. Whether its swad­dling or rhyth­mi­cal­ly ‘shh-ing’3 or read­ing them excerpts from Lacan’s le stade du miroir, these epipha­nies will come back, but aren’t instant­ly recalled until sleep depri­va­tion kicks in.

I try to dis­cuss this with Jen­nifer but these days she is bone tired and all she hears is “wah-wah, Jen­nifer, wah wah wah,” like the Peanuts’ trom­bone sound effect4 of adults speak­ing to Char­lie and the gang. But in her moments of lucid­i­ty, she tells me that she has been told it’s tough to go from one to two kids, but that each addi­tion­al one there­after real­ly does­n’t mat­ter; she agrees that these same foun­tains of wis­dom had run dry some time ago and for­got­ten some of the siege-like trap­pings of parenthood.

  1. Would “delud­ed” be the right adjec­tive here, instead? []
  2. You go through whole news ones too! []
  3. which is supped to repro­duce mom’s beat­ing heart they heard in the womb []
  4. to lis­ten, click here []