It's official. Olive has broken my brain.
Instagram is loony. Who are these women with the babies and the black floppy hats? They have such clean homes. They have such BIG homes. Who knew there were so many shabby-chic restored farmhouses out there. Who knew there were young families who could afford to live in them. Who are these people? Have you ever met any in real life? They all have about seven children, each neatly six inches shorter than the other (I know this because they make a habit out of posing them standing shoulder to shoulder against the white, white walls of the farmhouses) as if they've been reproducing once every year, like clockwork.
Who are these people who dress their children like little gnomes? Always, always like little gnomes! Peaked hats. Bonnets. Tights on tights on tights. Wooden shoes. On an infant! Have you ever met one of these people in person? I'm not saying I wouldn't like to. In fact I would. I'd have so many questions for them.
Who are you and what do you do that you can afford the farmhouse and a continual stream of small gnome costumes? I've looked up the little knitwear. Those suits don't come cheap. Do you knit them yourselves? Do you knit the chunky wool blankets you lay them on as you drip-feed your succulents?
Back to Olive, and how she's broken my brain like an egg on the floor. Here I have the world's easiest baby and still I'm reduced to a human scrambled egg. Olive neither cries nor fusses. She's got a big wide face and she just shines. A ring of stars circle around her head as if she's a cartoon character who got hit with a hammer. Olive is a joyful, chewy little thing. But do you know why I had a meltdown yesterday and was almost, nearly, but not quite, reduced to tears?
Because her dad ate my pancake. Not a metaphor. He made me a stack of pancakes in the morning but I couldn't get around to eating them all because it is impossible to focus on anything longer than 30 seconds. I left the plate on the table and five hours later he asked if he could finish my pancakes. I said no. Five hours after that, he ate them anyway.
This seemed no good to me. I stomped my foot- I actually stomped my foot!- and I tugged my sweater up over my head. Dave offered to make me brand new pancakes, a fresh stack. Can you believe the audacity! But I didn't want new pancakes, I wanted the old ones, the ones that had been aging in syrup for ten hours, the ones that seemed to have transformed over the course of the day from simple breakfast cake to analogy of my entire life.
I can't finish my breakfast, or my thoughts, I can't keep the house in order, or manage to use the same cup for water for just one day and so the counters are always cluttered, and all my teachers from kindergarten through eleventh grade saw so much potential in me and I've squandered it all. I was so smart and I've wasted it all. Why not twelfth grade? Because I graduated high school a year early. See? Smart. Peaked early. Wasted.
I'm not actually too concerned about this all. I wasn't too concerned about the pancake, really, it's just that sleep deprivation makes toddlers of us all.
I am so sorry. I must be a monster to be around. Olive can wriggle across the whole bed in her swaddle now, like some sort of jumping bean. We took her arms out of the swaddle and she can drag her whole body. She slithers. It's like watching evolution. I have a short fuse. I sulk.
And then these women! On Instagram! The gnome mothers. They speak through letterboards now. Are they sleeping? At all ? When? Do they nap with the babies and if so, who is looking after the other six? The cacti? Are they on speed? Did they find their speed on the internet- the dark internet? Could they post a link I'M KIDDING. They're not doing anything illicit, it's just that they drink matcha and smoothies all day long. They're constantly recording themselves drinking matcha and smoothies all day long!
My baby's favorite thing to do in the whole world is to be naked and hug her plush shark. Often she'll pee.
I love her so much. I'll never be a gnome mom clever-letterboarding through my matcha days. Ever. I'm a scrambled egg brain for life.
Unless I get some sleep tonight.
Then I'm going to turn this thing around.