So I've become quite the adventurer--thanks to the "rear view mirror" my father installed in my back seat so I can see my son while I'm driving, I no longer fear that he is turning all shades of blue in his car seat while I warble along with the radio, oblivious (although I should be worrying about the distraction factor--looking at Ethan while I'm driving is the equivalent of talking on about a dozen cell phones all at once), and I am feeling like getting out of the house might be the one thing that saves my sanity.
That is, of course, unless I am driving to the OB's office, in which case, I question my sanity even more, considering that at yesterday's appointment I said, "I cry a lot" and 30 seconds later I held a prescription for Zoloft in my hands. Wow, they just hand the pills out like candy--can I get a Pez dispenser with that?
But that is not the point of my post--I'm talking about my adventures, not my flirtation with supposed post partum depression.
Yesterday I attempted to get into the swing of things BIG TIME. In two weeks time, my full time, all-but-live-in maid (aka Mom) will be heading for higher, baby-free, ground and I will be left to my own devices to keep my family afloat. That means there will be laundry to do, dishes to wash, meals to plan and cook, piles of clutter to move around from one place to another and groceries to buy.
Last week I slowly tackled the in-house chores like laundry and dishes, building up to the bigger stuff. Amazingly, this week we have clean utensils and underwear due to my efforts. Yesterday I decided to bite the bullet and take the kid to the grocery store with me. I thumbed through my Rachael Ray's "30 Minute Meals" (her show is so much more fun than her books...booo!) and picked out a few innocuous, how-hard-could-it-be, recipes and made a shopping list.
As mentioned, the ride to the grocery store was super stress free because every time I looked up, there he was in the rearview mirror thingy, not at all any tinge of blue--just looking around at the world wizzing by him (have I mentioned that he's awake a lot now?) Fabulous...this was going to be a life-affirming trip! I can leave the house with an infant! I can do all the things I used to do (short, of course, to wheeling his stroller into Friday afternoon happy hours and downing 4 cosmos before 6pm).
Buuuuuuut, then I got to the store. I figured I would simply transfer his car seat to the front seat of the cart, and voila--let the shopping commence!!! I have seen this for years. I figured it's what you do when you take a baby shopping. No brainer.
Um. That's not how it works. The car seat, complete with my now fussy baby, was too wide for the cart's seat. When I tried to set it in there, it was balanced precariously in such a way that only Britney Spears would find it an acceptable mode of transport for a baby. I may not win a mother of the year award, but I don't want to be in her baby-dropping, front-seat-driving company...
There I stood, in the parking lot of Harris Teeter, shopping cart in front of me, car seat in my hands, fussy baby complaining about---whatever. Mkay...this is not what I was expecting. The refrigerator at home is full of rotting produce and sour milk. Aisles and aisles of fresh, new food was just feed away from me. We NEED food...and yet, I can't get through the grocery store door. I contemplated putting him in his stroller and pushing both the shopping cart and the stroller through the aisles, but then I realized I might be asked to leave and never return if I attempted that.
So, sighing heavily, I accepted that I would be returning home empty-handed. My refrigerator would remain a haven for questionable left-overs, flat soda and year-old marinades. Dinner would have to be yet another experience with take-out.