I think I used to be a regular person. I held a job and played in a band. I had a lot going on most of the time, and I liked it. So, take all that away, insert a baby, and what’s left to occupy my attention? Not much, apparently, because besides rocking back and forth, whether I’m holding a baby or not, I find myself counting. I count everything.
It started with the amount of sucks the baby would take while breast feeding. We had so many issues with his stopping and starting and pretty much snacking all day long, I would count the number of times he would suck before I would have to flick him to wake up. When we first started, it was every 16-18 sucks. It slowly dwindled down to every 3 sucks. Suck, suck, suck….. flick. Suck, suck, suck…. flick. All day, every day.
Then I realized I was counting other things, like rocking back and forth (that’s like a double-whammy Rainman- rocking AND counting the rocks), counting my steps, and counting the tv channels as I go through them on the remote control. I’ve even caught myself counting, and I don’t even realize I’m doing it- or what I’m even counting. Turns out, I count my breaths also. It’s crazy, I’ll notice around “26” or so… “26, 27, 28….” Did I start at 1? Because I don’t remember starting to count anything.
Clearly, my mind is searching for some sort of stimulation. July was a REALLY hard month. Besides trying to recover from a C-Section, I also had a terrible breast infection that I just finished 20 days of antibiotics TODAY. I had an abscess that had to be aspirated twice. Once that drained (it took a good week and a half) it was downgraded to my good old friend cellulitis. What a horrible ordeal. It hurt so bad that it almost completely eclipsed my C-Section recovery pain. It was so sensitive, if my hair fell down on it, it absolutely killed. It was so hard to even hold Patrick on either side. Even holding him on the non-offending side opened me up to him kicking the offending side. It. Was. The. Worst.
But today at my check-up, turns out I’m FINALLY all clear. He will want to see me in about 6 months to be sure I’m still clear. I’m happy to close the door on that one.
Since I have finally been feeling better, I’ve been able to take some walks, go a few places and start practicing again. I found it impossible to sit down at the piano and get back into my routine, but a last minute gig booked for August 10 has inspired me back to the keyboard. I found that I have NOT been counting other extraneous things since I started back up. Turns out, that even though I’m not conscious of counting when playing music, when taken away, that counting energy has to go somewhere. So let this be a lesson to me…. don’t stop playing music, or you might actually go mad.