It’s 8:12 a.m. on a Monday. My son is dancing to Michael Jackson’s “Wanna Be Startin’ Something.” My newborn daughter is asleep in our bed.
I’ve had my Keurig coffee. My Oatmeal Squares cereal. I’ve looked in the mirror on the wall by the dining room table and thought, as I do most mornings, that my bedhead hair looks fantastic.
A breast pump is on the table next to my laptop. We’ve looked everywhere — EVERYWHERE — for the second of two tubes and the second of two “breast shields” that I swear I stored in a smart place after my son moved on from human milk over a year ago.
Pumping my own milk is the weirdest thing I’ve ever done that’s become normal.
At 8:25 a.m., Jason appears at the top of the stairs in a button down shirt and blue pajama pants. He’s finished the three-hour web stream that broadcasts his Counter-Strike: Global Offensive games to a couple dozen viewers. Julian gives him a hug in the kitchen, then throws his white knit blanket over his head for several rounds of “Where’s Julian?”
A fruit fly hovers around the remains of his cereal on his high chair tray. I throw them out.
At 8:38 a.m., cries from the bedroom. Lina is up. Jason’s always said baby poo smells like popcorn. It’s true. Wiped and changed, Lina meets dad and Julian outside the bathroom, the boys draped in towels. “Hola, Lina,” Julian says from Jason’s shoulder, and I lean her in for a wet big brother kiss.
My shower is followed by day 2 of the maternity jeans that didn’t fit in the last month of pregnancy, topped with a fitted white shirt and print scarf. Almost normal. “Mama, no tienes pansa,” Julian says as I change. “Mom, you don’t have a belly.” I look at the deflated basketball at the floor of my torso. All things considered, it’s nice.
Today is my first day on my own with the kids. Wish me luck.