Sunday, March 05, 2006

Off Duty

I am off duty, now. Yes, off duty from even sleeping baby watch. Sean is out with his friends, and he has the boy. We went out to a late lunch/early dinner, and the boy was kind of out of it, compared to his afternoon of commando crawling around the apartment grabbing at toys, cats, faces, and the Sunday Times indiscriminately and laughing gleefully.

Sean said, "he's gonna go to sleep as soon as we put him in the stroller, and then I can walk you and the boy home." The implication being that I would then be on sleeping baby duty and he would be free to go out and tra la la with the guys. I said. "Who said I'm going home?" since this was supposed to be my choice, whether I took off and did something on my own or stayed with they guys.

Truth was, I was already past the small window of opportunity when I had the energy to go out and do something, maybe go into Manhattan and read magazines in Barnes and Noble, my usual exciting solo activity. I really was planning on just going home and crashing or something. Watch tv, surf the web, whatever. Sean probably knew that, but that is all besides the point.

It was my opportunity to have a free evening, and gosh darn it, I was going to take it, and he was going to watch the boy. That's right.

So I left the restaurant before the boy went to sleep, he was still fussing and reaching for Papa. I left them with a bottle of formula, which we've never used a though I have no idea if Gabriel will actually take the stuff. I just left.

To prove myself wrong, I stopped at a couple of boutiques to window shop, got all gushy over non-diaper carrying purses and earrings that I can't wear lest the better part of my earlobe be left in a banana covered baby fist. I also stopped at an art gallery.

Yes, I could do that, since I didn't have a stroller keeping me at the lower end of a steep set of brownstone stairs. I went in and went upstairs, and looked around at the art that looked much more interesting from a distance than it did up close. But that was just me, as I am not much into pop art, and this was covered in images from dirty Japanese animation. The dirty part doesn't bother me. It might be the animation part-- or it might be that my brain has turned into moldy swiss cheese and I just couldn't stand for very long infront of it in contemplation. I did however really like a painting they had in the back room, where they keep past exhibitors. Come to think of it, this was also based in a kind of animation style, but I just liked it better.

I'd like to be painting again. How do I get back into it while fighting the exhaustion, the squished (or swiss) cheese brain, the 15minute attention span, the thirty thousand things I have to do at home, the demanding baby needing tending? Oh, yeah, and the need to keep dangerous little things out of the path of a curious, commando crawling baby with banana covered fists-- when my studio is also his playroom?

Ah, the dilemmas.

At least I get to be off duty for a while.

1 comment:

Renée said...

Glad you enjoyed your "off-duty" time. Isn't it a weird feeling? I remember the first time I went out by myself at night after I had my first baby (it was about 6 months after!). I felt like I was cheating on someone!

As for your wanting to get back to being creative...you already are easing back into it, in my opinion. Just look at all the blogging you've done lately. You weren't able to write as much in your blog before, right? As he gets older and more independent you'll be able to do more and more. It won't always be like this. That holey, swiss cheese feeling will leave your brain, and you'll be able to do all you want to do. I promise.

Hang in there, and give yourself credit for all that you're doing right now. I know it's hard to believe, but life will feel more normal and less chaotic before you know it.

-Renee

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