Maternity Leave and Me

By Laura

So you’ve binged watched a show, right?  I’m almost done with my latest binge.  Sure, sure, most people call it maternity leave, but as I was finishing up my binge watching of Gilmore Girls within the binge of maternity leave, I realized the similarities.

Both require some preparation. You need a comfortable place to sit.  With the TV, you’ll be there for hours with only your sore bum to tell you to switch sides or move to the other end of the sofa with a laser-like focus on the program.  With the baby, you’ll be holed-up in the confines of your home, paralyzed by the fear of exposing your newborn to the world with a keen sense of microscopic germs and enough hand-sanitizer to purify an Irish pub.

Hydration and sustenance are key. They are probably easier during a tellie binge because you can hit pause, zap some food and pour your wine to let it breath.  With a wee one, chances are you won’t realize you’re hungry or thirsty until you sit down, get the baby comfortable and either latched on or with a bottle and then you’re stuck (or worse: your water is 2-3 inches out of your reach; it also makes you thirstier when it’s just so close!).

For either, you need jammies that breathe and don’t hold odor.  You snicker or say nu-uh, I’ll always shower, but when you’re in the middle of Emily-Lorelai-Rory debate, chances are you’re fast forwarding thru the credits and there is no time for Dove body wash.  Likewise, with a baby, when you’re not holding, feeding, rocking that bundle, you accidentally fall asleep after sitting on the pot because it’s a quiet place with soft lighting and for the first time in 23+ hours you’re not responsible for another’s life.

Coming out of either binge can be emotional.  You realize the world has not stopped with you ensconced like a hermit and it doesn’t share the same obsession.   You’re awkward in the light and with pants that have to button on them.  You may want to get things done, but you find yourself just sitting – your brain is a bit fizzled.  You’re left with love, devotion, and sacrifice known only to you (and a cute little baby and “Copper Boom” stuck in your head.)


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