Have I mentioned that C is allergic to peanuts? And that teenage babysitters charge $10/hour? And that my nanny unexpectedly took two additional weeks of vacation? And that my job isn’t being supportive of my need for a little extra time at home during that two week nanny vacation? And that I finally caved and took two mental health days away from work, and now they have to be spent with my mother-in-law? And my own mother is self-absorbed?

Happy days, happy days, 100 happy days. FOCUS ON THE HAPPY DAYS.

I’ve decided to do the #100happydays thing on Instagram. I thought it’d be a good way to put things in perspective when my worldview is out of whack.

I know I live a charmed life. No doubt, I do. But when I say I have a warped worldview, I’m not talking about material things. I’m talking about life in general.

I think I mentioned this in here, but when I returned to work after having Charlotte, my responsibilities increased by a lot (my pay, however, increased not at all), and my responsibilities at home also increased by a lot. A whole, whole lot.

And then my kid became mobile, and that’s when shit got real. It’s a whole different ballgown when you’ve got a moving baby who must touch/pull/eat everything not nailed to the ground (and sometimes even the carpet). The amount of vigilance required is more than I could have ever imagined.

When Charlotte is awake and in the house with me, there is NO FREE TIME NO MORE EVER.

I’m exhausted from foiling Charlotte’s daily, unintentional suicide missions, I’m tired from work, and I’m tired from normal life stuff. All the tiredness leads to stress, and the culmination of it all can be depressing.

Oh!  OH!

And my husband feels the same way. Exhaustion, exhaustion, stress, depression.

I once read that having a baby is like detonating a bomb in a marriage.

YES. Yes, that’s exactly what it is.

So, #100happydays. I’m trying to get happy, guys. Or at least be more aware of the steady stream of wonderful that flows throw my life, even though I’m generally too tired to recognize it.

When I was younger, I was desperate for blue eyes. They would be so much better than the dark brown I was born with. I used to dream of what my eyes should look like. They’d have a dark blue rim, with light blue in the middle. Those, I thought, would be perfect.

Those, I now see, are my daughter’s eyes. A dark blue rim, with pale blue in the center. I think I dreamed them up.

We recently celebrated her first birthday. Go ahead an insert every cliche about parenthood and the passage of time HERE. It’s all true. Every bit of it. Time flies at incomprehensible speeds, love is deeper than you ever knew possible.

Thanks to Charlotte, I’m living an amplified life.

We didn’t get her anything for her birthday. No gifts or anything. We threw her a 30+ person party, got her a special onesie (that says ONE!) and I made her a tutu, but no new toys or treats.

Three days after I learned I was pregnant, I started writing letters to my unborn child. In the letters I confess my fear, my hopes, and Allan’s euphoria. When I learn I’m carrying a girl, I tell her where her name came from and what color paint we selected for her room.

I tell her about feeling her kick. I continued writing throughout her first year, telling her about the day she was born. I told her about her fascination with lights, about her love of bananas, and her obsession with the dog.

I told her the story of her, and the story of us. It’s a love story, the likes of which I never thought I’d write.

I will print it, bind it, and that will be her first birthday present. And maybe someday when she’s older, she’ll read it and have an idea of just how much I love her.