I am a planner. This has been true for as long as I can remember. I have always wanted to be one of those girls who could just jump in the car with a group of friends and go...wherever. I feel like I may have been that person in another lifetime. But in this life, I like to know where we are going, who is coming along, what will we do when we get there and, most importantly, when we will be back. I don't really like surprises. As a child, I would imagine how wonderful a surprise party would be. As an adult, when said party came to fruition, I found it to be anxiety-inducing. Difficult to hand the reigns over to someone else in my own house and awkward to be caught off guard with no warning and a inability to act instinctively as hostess without any preparation.
Unfortunately, flexibility is practically a job requirement for motherhood. Ambiguity is a daily occurrence. You can bet if the baby is supposed to take two naps for at least an hour a piece, he will skip one. Or he will take both but decide an hour is much too long and make his presence known after only about 30 minutes or so. If you expect that he will eat sliced banana for part of his lunch because yesterday he adored it, you should know that today banana will be the food he despises most in the world. If you think that you are going to run errands in the afternoon when his nap is over, today is the day that he will take the super-mega nap and wake up just in time for you to have missed your opportunity. Many women probably aren't bothered by this. In fact, most people probably would say "Just roll with it". But for a planner (read: control freak) like me, this can wreck havoc on what would be an otherwise orderly existence.
The worst part is the anxiety that comes along with the unexpected change in plans. Did my tyke not nap this morning because I didn't rock him long enough? Did he need more play time? Or did he sleep too late this morning? Did he have a smaller bottle because he was still full from breakfast earlier? Should I have fed him upstairs instead? These are the days that Google becomes my enabler and I spend copious amounts of time scouring the internets trying to find the solution to help my baby sleep longer, eat better, fuss less, etc. This is truly a case of too much information being a bad thing as every blog post, baby center query, and Yahoo! answer that I find only causes me to wonder what I should be doing differently. What can I change to get a better result? The realistic answer to all of these queries is "Nothing". There is nothing I can do from one day to the next to guarantee that my kiddo will do what I expect him to. For a Type A person like me, that is the toughest part to accept.