It started just like any other day. The baby woke me up at the crack of dawn, just a couple hours after his last feeding. I sat in my cozy chair, chin propped on my chest, as I dozed and fed the bottomless pit that was my son.

Just as the chow-fest was coming to an end, my husband moseyed into the room, looking fresh and rested. Naturally, all I could do was throw daggers out of my eyes at him because even the slightest movement or sound would wake the baby. How dare he casually wave to me before heading off to a nice, long, hot, relaxing shower?!

Apparently, God was smiling on me at that moment, because I was able to slip the baby into his crib without waking him. I backed out of the room, shut the door, and did a victory dance in the hallway. Score! I had access to both my hands again, a luxury that wouldn’t last long.

I was just placing breakfast on the table as my husband slid into his chair, perfectly refreshed. He devoured his meal while I regaled him with tales of my sleepless night. Apparently, I had more complaints stored up than I thought because just as I was getting to the good parts, he leaned over, kissed my cheek, and bid me adieu.

I leaned back in my chair, surveying the quiet house, knowing the stillness wouldn’t last. Soon, the baby would be awake, demanding my attention. It looked like I was going to get to eat breakfast though. Hot meals were few and far between.

Seriously, no joke, the second I picked up my fork, the doorbell rang. A split second later, the wailing started. A split second after that, there was a facepalm. Why didn’t I follow through with my threat?! A nice, welcoming sign on the front door that read, “Wake my baby and die!” seemed so appropriate at that moment.

I grabbed the babe and headed to the front door. My anger dissipated slightly when I saw the UPS man standing on the front steps. Someone, somewhere was thinking of me! And sending me something nice! Likely, it was a gift for the baby, but the delivery was still exciting.

I flung the door open and greeted the smiling gentleman with a hearty hello. The smile seemed to freeze on his face as he slowly and cautiously leaned away from me. Excited by the prospects of something fun in that large, heavy-looking box, I failed to notice his reaction. Instead, I immediately started jabbering, my mindless rambling continuing on as one thought flowing into the next.

"It had been awhile since you last delivered something here. Have you had the chance to see the baby? He’s really grown in the last two weeks. Monday, this shirt was a little big; now I can barely get him into it. But that’s okay, because everyone has been so generous and thoughtful. We have baby clothes coming out our ears. This kid will be so well dressed over the next couple of years! His wardrobe is bigger than mine! Actually, it’s probably bigger than mine and my husband’s wardrobe combined! But that’s a good thing, because he seems to go through so many outfit changes in a day. Between dirty diapers and feedings, this guy makes a mess. And it’s not like I have time to do laundry. I can hardly put this guy down. Not that I’m complaining, but sometimes it would be nice to be even just a little productive, you know what I mean? Well, I don’t know if you do know what I mean. Do you have kids of your own?"

By the time I stopped to take a breath, the UPS man’s eye had swiveled downward and become fixed on the ground. Sensing the momentary abatement of my mindless chatter and its inevitable return, he took the opportunity to drop the box on the doorstep, turn around, and run back to his delivery truck.

What a nice, nice man, I thought. I hope he comes back again soon. It was lovely having someone to chat with.

I shoved the box into the house with my toe and turned to close the door. As I did, I caught a glimpse of my reflection in the window’s glass.

Goodness. It wasn’t a pretty sight.

I ran to the bathroom to better assess what we were dealing with.

There it was. Stringy, greasy hair that hadn’t been washed in… several days. One plucked eyebrow; one overgrown, unruly brow that demanded more time than I had to give. Spit up milk caked on my neck and oozing down my shoulder. Glasses that were held together with tape, covering the damage done after the baby tried to rip them off my face. Poo that had somehow relocated from my son’s crotch to my own. And a braless mother putting all that nastiness out on public display.

I was horrified. How had I let it get this bad?! When was the last time I cleaned my house? My clothes? Myself?

When was the last time I carried on an intelligent conversation with a fellow adult?

There. Right there was the real problem. I hadn’t had enough adult interactions lately. I had shut myself off from all human beings. I had turned myself into a nonsensical, rambling nut job who’s only source of human contact was strange men who appeared on my doorstep and this one tiny baby. All for the sake of said baby’s well-being.

After all, what would happen to the baby if I ventured outside with other people who were full of germs? What if he got sick? What if he got cold? What if I dropped him? What if we got in a car accident?

You see? It was just better for us to stay home where it was nice and safe.

Only, it wouldn’t be safe much longer if I continued to be a recluse. As evident from my morning encounter with the innocent, unsuspecting UPS man, my sanity was already starting to slip.

And, it wasn’t like my kid could live in a bubble his entire life. Eventually, like when he was 50, I’d have to let him go out there and experience the harsh reality of life. Perhaps, it would be a good idea for him to develop some coping mechanisms.

People had tried telling me it was important to establish a support system early on, but I brushed them off. Every mother was different, right? What worked for them maybe wasn’t the best thing for me. I had this all under control.

Upon personal reflection, though, I realized there might be some logic to their argument. Maybe I did need to give just the tiniest bit of attention to my own well-being. Maybe the baby would be okay if he didn’t have 100% of my undivided attention. Maybe there were other moms out there who felt as crazy and alone as I did.

It was a revolutionary day, my friends. And to think… all that insight was delivered right to my front door, courtesy of a little brown truck.

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