8:29pm

Rosalyn is asleep now. She was a bit fussy this evening; she’s tugging at her ear so we’re keeping an eye out for an infection. It’s cold season and she’s a daycare baby. It’s probably an ear infection. Please, don’t be an ear infection.

I’m heating up leftovers in the microwave and relishing in the dim silence while the green flashes count down one hundred and twenty seconds. I want more hours in the day. I want to get home from work with our baby and have hours to relax, go for a walk, cook dinner together, eat together, wind down, then bedtime. As it is we get to pick one or two of those things before lights out. So microwave it is, then.

Upstairs two dogs are being bathed and hating every second of it. Andrew lets one of them free and I can hear her wriggle and squirm against the carpet, ecstatic with her new, clean freedom.

I bring up dinner and he jokingly asks where his big glass of wine is before striking a pose in his pajama pants to make me laugh. I am so serious. We’re an odd pair.

Nothing extraordinary is going on. I can’t imagine this tiny piece of time would mean as much to anyone else. Perhaps with their cast of characters, not mine. But it is mine. And I wanted to remember it.

more to me

“Do I have to spell it out for you, or scream it in your face? The chemistry between us could destroy this place.” 

And all of a sudden I’m sixteen. I’m sixteen and we’re brand new and I’d do all over again, step-by-step. 
I promise I haven’t forgotten us. I haven’t forgotten how, why this all started. I promise I haven’t forgotten you.

She is God’s gift to us but you are God’s gift to me.

There will come a day when we are more than the chaotic monotony that is our lives. You are more to me than bottles washed and back rubs. She is the blood in my veins but you are my heart.

I love us then, I love us now. Always, you are my home.

peggy

The TL;DR of this is that I slept this weekend and needed to blog about it.

Thursday, Rosalyn had her “trial” day at daycare, which was basically a freebie day for us to run through our new routine. She cat-napped all day, but I truly would’ve been shocked by anything else so no biggie. When I picked her up it was time for her to go to sleep again and I had visions of a cranky, crying baby in traffic on the way home. And to my delighted surprise neither of those things happened! As it turns out my route from daycare to home mostly goes against the flow of the afternoon build-up. During the drive I called up my mom (Nana) and mother-in-law (Grita – Grandma Rita) to fill them in on the daycare deets. After a few minutes I look back in the mirror and my baby was fast asleep! No muss, no fuss. No pacifier, no white noise. Just, “you know I think I’ll take a little nap now.” It was incredible. I was actually speechless except for the part where I spent the whole evening telling anyone who would listen, “SHE WENT TO SLEEP! BY HERSELF! CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?!”

Friday was our last day of grandma-care and it was Grita’s. And because I struck gold when it comes to in-laws, she dropped off a crockpot full of dinner in my kitchen before playing with my baby all day. Friday night brought us a screaming baby, the gut-dropping realization that YES she is teething and YES it could be months before the tooth even cuts, and a very-legal-not-at-all-above-the-speed-limit Target run by Dad to find some teething tablets. Against all odds she continued to be THE most adorable human on the earth.

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image2More car seat naps! Be amazed!

Saturday we packed up our whole clan to make our way to my parents’ house. We were only half an hour late and three bags over the “let’s not bring too much” limit so I’m gonna go ahead and give us a gold star for that one. We had a sister’s 24th birthday to celebrate with tacos as well as a baby’s first night away from home to set up for. In painfully cliche fashion, it wasn’t until we were five minutes from leaving that I realized I needed to grab Robin’s food, bowl, and bed as well. Just last year we were filling our car to the brim with dog stuff for HER overnights. I’m so sorry, pup. You’re a champ in every sense of the word and I hope our nightly family walks make you feel loved.

After approximately twenty-five goodbye kisses and exactly ZERO! mom-tears Andrew and I left my ENTIRE HEART AND SOUL behind and checked into a swanky hotel in Midtown for the evening. But not before first stopping to find an ATM and Andy finding me instead in a nearby boutique at the register buying a present for Rosalyn. His eye roll practically had a gravitation pull but he loves me and therefore didn’t question any further my spending $30 on the (organic) stuffed (in a pirate costume) pig. Her name is Peggy.

We celebrated Andrew’s 29th birthday with dinner at Park Tavern. Deviled eggs with jalapeno, candied brussels sprouts with bacon, grilled cheese with fried green tomato. RIP leftovers forgotten in the hotel fridge. You are sorely missed. Our oh-so-sweet rom-com plan was to then walk around Piedmont Park. But about ten steps in we both looked at each other and agreed, “Holy shit it is literal Hell outside let’s call our Uber.” Which we did. With a few Atlanta skyline selfies snuck in so we could in the very least project the image of a romantic walk in the park. That’s all that matters to you guys, right?

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image6Enter the most important piece of any new parent’s date night arsenal: Melatonin. We each popped two and slept for TEN HOURS. Straight. In white, fresh sheets and a thick comforter pulled up to my chin because there’s no baby to worry about suffocating. With the only interruption being MY bladder, not anyone else’s. Ah, bliss. We even used the same white noise that we turn on for Ros with a much more impressive Pavlovian response to its soothing vacuum. After a month of sleeping in 45-90 minute intervals I woke the next morning speaking in exclamation points.

“Good morning! Wow look at all this milk I pumped! Let’s get smoothies for breakfast! I can’t wait to show her Peggy! Do you want to split a scone?!”

We picked up our perfect, precious, angel babies (!!!) and went to have birthday lunch with Andrew’s family. My ridiculous high was eventually dulled by the horrendous ninety-before-noon temperatures that had me wondering why do we even have hair?? Time to chop this mess off and let my neck breathe.

Since last week Rosalyn has begun what we’re hoping to be the up curve of her sleep regression. Last night was a recent record of almost five hours before needing to eat! In her crib! Fantastic! I have these visions of three-year-old Ros still carrying her pirate pig around and therefore have been forcing it upon her with no shame. It’s the first thing she sees when she wakes up. I sleep with it so it smells like me. “OH MY GOD ROSALYN LOOK ITS PEGGY THE PIG!”

image7I may be drunk with power/rest.

our weekend

This weekend was really, really good and it was just what I needed. The previous week was hard. There were a few things that didn’t go right and got under my skin, working nights did not jive with the baby’s schedule at ALL, and overall I was feeling pretty rundown. I needed a pick-me-up something bad and thankfully I got that.

Right now, Rosalyn sleeps her longest stretch of the night in her bassinet next to us. After that her sleep can be a bit restless so she moves into our bed so we can nurse and fall right back asleep. It’s a balance that works well for us; I get some hours of rest by myself and then when she joins us we all get much more sleep than we would have by trying to put her back down in the bassinet only to wake up again in forty-five minutes. Saturday morning when she was ready to wake up for the day, Andrew offered to take her downstairs so I could try and get a little more sleep after a rough week. I suppose I was even more worn out than I thought because he was able to put her down for her first nap in the bassinet AND get her after she woke up without me even stirring. I’ve been struggling with being able to fall asleep lately so I only slept for about an hour and a half but it. was. GLORIOUS. And I woke up feeling so much better and so grateful to my husband. Rosalyn got even more dad-time as I went out to get a haircut. All three of us loved it.

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image2The main event was lunch with my dear friends Pearl and Kenny as they got to meet Ros. They both recently graduated with their Masters and it made me realize that our college years are a little further behind us than I realized. I know everyone says it, but its true: it still feels like yesterday that we were getting into shenanigans like crashing a dog’s birthday party in New Orleans. I actually still had a portfolio of Kenny’s and Pearl had a stack of my photographs that we exchanged and it felt a little bittersweet. That part of my life is over.

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image6Sunday we broke in the new baby jumparoo and it was THE most adorable thing you’ve ever seen. She looks so grown, what happened to my tiny tree frog? After grocery shopping and an impromptu the-baby-is-still-asleep-in-her-ergo-what-do-we-do froyo date my sister came over and we took our crew to the pool. It was Rosalyn’s second time and we stayed in the water quite a bit longer than the first. While she has an apprehensive look on her face, she never cries (and believe me, she doesn’t ever shy away from crying..) so I’m going to interpret that as her enjoying the water, if you don’t mind.

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image11This week I begin my longterm daytime schedule and I am thrilled! I worked the second shift for about two years and before that I had a series of odd jobs, all of which had strange hours such as beginning my day at 4:00am or not heading home until 2:30am. Last night Andy and I were cooking dinner with Ros hanging out in her jumper in the kitchen and I just about cried from happiness. That moment was exactly what I wanted.

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year one

Rachel_andrew_wedding-241smallToday Mr. Redmon and I celebrate our first set of three hundred and sixty-five days as a married couple. There was a small part of me that was a little sad when this date made its way closer to us. We had racked up a fair amount of dating anniversaries and it was almost like someone hit a reset button. I know, I know. Who’s counting? It’s not a competition. We’ll catch up though. It’s fun looking back at who we were six and a half years ago at our first one year anniversary. Hand over my heart, by the time we hit that first year I knew he was my husband. But I had enough self-awareness to know that smart seventeen year old girls aren’t supposed to say things like that out loud unless they want a face full of eye rolls and lot of oh-you-just-waits. We were just babies back then. Bright-eyed and full of new love and no idea of what was in store for us except that we were in it together. I imagine I’ll say that same sentence about us another seven years from now, too.

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Rachel_andrew_wedding-188smallThis first year has had a lot of hard moments for me as an individual. And the wonderful thing about having him as a husband is that I didn’t have to deal with it all as an individual. Share the joy and halve the pain. There’s a misconception that each partner has to meet 50/50 in the middle for a successful and happy relationship but its just not true. Sometimes its 50/50 but its impossible to live in the middle of the tight wire all the time. More often than not you’re sliding up and down that scale. Most of the time its 60/40 and then 25/75 and then 10/90 and then 55/45. And every once in awhile its 20/20 and you need to come together to make up that missing 60 percent. Life is always moving and we have to move with it and at times that’s going to mean taking your partner’s hand or throwing them over your shoulder so they don’t get lost in the tide. This entire first year Andrew has been carrying me on his shoulder or watching my back when I insist on running myself. I would say I don’t know how to thank him but I know there will come a day or week or decade that I’ll need to do the same for him. That’s the real beauty in it though. The not keeping tally or carefully doling it out so you’re never giving more than you’re receiving. It might even out in the end, or it might not. It doesn’t really matter.

Rachel_andrew_wedding-180smallI’ll wrap this up here as my better half is currently texting me weird selfies from downstairs. Happy anniversary, love! I can’t wait for year two with you.

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I, Rachel, take you Andrew to be the husband of my days, the companion of my house, the friend of my life. We shall bear together whatever trouble and sorrow God may lay upon us. And we shall share together whatever good and joyful things God may bring us. With these words and all the words of my heart I marry you and bind my life to yours.