Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

To Sleep, Perchance to Scream

At three in the afternoon when my daughter was about four weeks old, I hit a wall. With my fist, though not very hard, because I was trying to be as quiet as possible. Another day that week, I went into the bathroom, all the lights turned off, and screamed into a towel. Again, I didn't want to make very much noise, because my four-week-old daughter was "sleeping."

There are lots of tiny and useless nuggets of wisdom parents-to-be are given. My favorite is: "Sleep when your baby sleeps." But in the early days, she was never clearly sleeping, and any moment of silence from her corridor meant that we [...]


Why My Baby Doesn't Eat Animals

Having a child means that you, as a parent, wield incredible power. You can dress your baby exclusively in green, or never let her hear Simon & Garfunkel (as if) or Iggy Azalea (oops, I wish). Arguably the greatest power arrives with the introduction of “solid food” into your baby’s mouth, around the time they are six months old. I thought for a very long time, even talking it over with friends, about what Zelda’s first food should be. I was told by my doctor to start with something naturally mushy. I settled on a daily vacillation between the avocado and the banana.

Zelda didn’t want to wait until she [...]


I Dressed a Girl and I Liked It

When I found out that I was going to have my first child, and then, soon after, that it was going to be a girl, I had few preconceived ideas about parenting or babies. I hadn't spent much time around babies, and didn't have very many opinions about how best to raise one. I knew just two things: That, until she could decide for herself, she would not eat animals, and that she wouldn't be dressed like a "girl" in the traditional sense. That meant pink would be avoided, as would most dresses, hair bows, and all manner of fancy gear which I had spent my entire adult life loathing. [...]


Six Months, One Week, and Four Days With Zelda

I pulled out my first gray hair today at 9:32 a.m. It wasn’t the first gray hair I’ve had, just the first one I’ve pulled out. I didn’t pull it out with a sense of purpose; it just came out with the rest of its classmates. No one tells you—well, no one told me, until I’d already noticed—that after you have a baby, all that lustrous, glorious pregnancy hair sheds quickly, replaced by your former, less exciting and less beautiful hair.

I examined this gray hair momentarily. (Time is of the essence, I only have a moment.) I deemed it not much coarser than my regular hair, and [...]