There's something refreshing about the way leaking bodily fluids can ground a situation in reality. I realized that first thing this morning, when blood lurching down my leg necessitated a pant change, and then again when my son's explosive poop transferred some of itself to my chest and forced me into a new shirt. I was off and running from the very start of the day, and I was glad about it. I would've remained in the surreal without those diversions. I would've been free to get mopey and maudlin and to cry all day. I do not like the hormonal haze. Apparently I prefer poop.
When The Boss was born I was surprised by the baby blues. I had heard about them, but like everything else related to actually raising a child as opposed to gestating one, I ignored the warnings and advice. Then an emergency c-section under general anaesthesia exacerbated an already compromised mental situation and I was a blubbering mess for three weeks and not-quite-myself for three months. This time around, I've been counting on the fact that many women do not get those blues as badly with subsequent children as they did with the first.
So far, the feeling is more muted than it was the first time around. It's also easier to keep it at bay when faced with the demands of raising two children. But it's there. It's the idea that life is so damn short and there's nothing that can be done about it. It's uncertainty when you'd think a little confidence would be more evolutionarily beneficial. But it's fleeting and I know that now. Emotions will be replaced to a large degree by the physical pace of keeping up with my babies. Pre-school and diapers. Swing sets and burp cloths. Six weeks of extra absorbent sanitary pads.
There will be blood. (And poop)