Friday Feels: It’s a lot

One of the most curious things I learned about little babies when I became a parent is how much they need to sleep!

(And I am also insanely lucky that we got a good sleeper!)

Those first 2 months or so are just a endless cycle of sleep, eat, poop…repeat…

I remember back to when we were in the NICU with Adriana for her first 3 weeks on this planet.

It was a scary time watching our baby girl push-through things that adults rarely conquer. There was an overwhelming sense of fear that permeated those weeks sitting in hard plastic chairs, watching machines beeping, trying to understand all the “medical speak” going on around you — wondering what the next 24 hours may hold.

On our second day in the NICU Nurse Valerie put us on a schedule. She casually walked over to the little whiteboard hanging above our precious little fighter and wrote: “09, 12, 3, 6.

She instructed us that every three hours we would repeat the ritual of her waking to eat, changing her diaper, and doing a little “skin-to-skin” to lull her back to sleep.

Then you’d wait three hours and repeat the cycle again…

That ritual gave us structure when so much around us was madness.

I think of Nurse Valerie often and am so grateful to her and all those nurses & doctors that cared for me and Carlos just as much as they cared for our baby girl.

But sleeping every 3 hours? What gives?

As I dug into this phenomenon using my scholarly research skills (thank you, Google) I found that part of this constant need to sleep is driven by the fact that their little baby brains can only take in so much at a time.

In short, their minds get “full” and sleep is a way of “resetting” their brains from taking in so much stimuli. It gives them time to sort and process it all.

And there’s a lesson in there, I think…

This has been a freaking WEEK with so much happening.

On Monday, I spent time reflecting on Black History Month during our extra day off and spending time with my little girl at brunch with friends — all was right in the world.

On Tuesday, I was bombarded with insta-stories about a new “Don’t Say Gay” bill in Florida and a new executive order in Texas going after trans kids and their families.

I have lived in both Florida & Texas so I feel I have the right to say that those states have a propensity to often make me ashamed on top of being outraged.

Then on Wednesday we were going to bed and alerts starting coming in about Russia invading Ukraine and starting what may become a significant war in Europe, reminding many of Hitler & Poland almost 83 years ago.

To say my head is spinning is an understatement.

I tried to sit down and write this entry last night, but I had so many feels that I couldn’t quite get anything into focus.

So I went to bed.

I needed to acknowledge it’s a lot.

And like my little baby, overwhelmed by taking in a world where everything around her was sending her brain into overdrive, I feel the need for a nap.

And as I sit here reflecting this Friday morning — maybe that’s the lesson.

To simply acknowledge that it’s a lot.

To be okay with giving myself time to process it all.

To not have anything pithy or poetic to say when things are just a bit too much.

To embrace being fully human in this kind of moment we find ourselves in.

And to pull the proverbial covers over my head and take a little nap to reset my brain so I can move forward.

Take care of each other, mi gente.

JM

#fridayfeels

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