When Daddy Has to Be Mommy by Karen Williams

I am currently recovering from cosmetic surgery. When I was pregnant, I knew I was only going to be pregnant once. I enjoyed nine months of Foodie-Free-For-All! It was the most amazing supersized, sour cream covered, extra cheese, double pepperoni, whole milk, sugar coated nine months of my life. At the end, however, I was one beautiful daughter and seventy-five pounds richer. My doctor was not impressed.

 A couple of diets and several months of hardcore exercising later, I lost seventy-four pounds (I really hate that last pound). I found myself fitting into my pre-pregnancy jeans, but I was still a mess! I had too much skin, too many stretch marks, and not enough patience for all-natural methods of regaining my twenty-five year old body. After considerable research and numerous consultations, I had a tummy-tuck on Thursday. My doctor warned me about the many, many drawbacks of a tummy tuck. My back hurts because I can’t sit straight. My stomach hurts because most of it is missing. My muscles hurt because I can barely move. More than all of this, however, is the pain that comes from taking a “Mommy break.”

I can’t lift my daughter for a while, so I have made sure to have extra help around the house. I have ensured that the sitter we trust the most will come over everyday to help care for my daughter under my watchful eye. This fabulous babysitter knows my methods for feeding, cleaning, changing, and scheduling my daughter’s day. Today, however, on my second day of recovery, I realize I forgot to prepare one person: my husband.

Let me begin by assuring everyone, myself included, that my husband is a fabulous father. He loves our daughter more than I could have possibly hoped for, and they are great friends. I, however, come from a long line of people who have a specific way of doing things at a specific time with no justifiable reason for doing things any differently (read: Control Freaks).

I don’t understand why my dear husband fed our daughter breakfast a half an hour later than usual. I cannot fathom why she had lunch an hour later than normal, and I’m completely lost as to why it would be acceptable for her to wear her pajamas four hours after the time she normally gets dressed. As I sit in my carefully-poised-position-of-pain, I ruminate about which part of this situation is worse: the fact that I can’t care for my daughter the way I see fit or the fact that I can’t seem to handle letting my husband take control.

Fortunately, we all have a good sense of humor about this. At eight months old, my daughter seems to be recovering nicely from her late start to her day. My husband is laughing good-naturedly at my cruise director tendencies where our daughter is concerned. And me? Well, I’m working on it. I would like to say that I have whole-heartedly accepted my lack of control, but I would be lying. Although I know in my heart of hearts that my husband knows what he is doing and my baby will be fine, I can’t help but think that nobody can play mommy to my baby as well as I can.

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