Getting Our Feet Wet

Well, here we are on week three (right? It’s been three weeks? I can’t keep track of anything). Dr. J started Dental School yesterday, and as nervous as I was in the months leading up to yesterday about this first week, it has gone off without a hitch. It has actually been-dare I say-nice having him gone. I miss him, of course, but it felt like a limbo period and I was ready just to get on with the routine already. Rather, finding a new routine- a new normal for our little threesome. I hate to say this, but sometimes it’s just easier doing everything myself than expecting someone else to do it and then having it be done differently that I do it or not done at all.

Our new routine isn’t much different than our old one, it just involves many, MANY more steps and about an hour longer to actually get out of the apartment. You see, when we leave the building and start pounding pavement out there in the big city, we never make it back within an hour or two. It takes a while to walk anywhere we want to go, so I must pack for each adventure the way I used to pack for major adventures back home. Snacks, sippy cups, bottles, lunch (sometimes), diapers, wipes, sunscreen, hats, re-usable grocery bags, toys and my own personal belongings somewhere in one of the 18 bags that I pack. INTO ONE STROLLER. It isn’t like we live outside the city, but we do live on the water and a ways from the big stores and parks. It’s a subway ride to get to Central Park even and by God I will take the kids on the subway by myself of these days. Mark my words (SHUDDER). I’ll need to figure out how to carry two kids in a double stroller down two flights of stairs and get them onto that massive, busy, stinky, sweaty moving train one of these days. Bring it. Apparently there are elevators (or smellevators) that are available, but you have to find the right subway station. I think it would be easier to turn into the Incredible Hulk than find the right subway train to take me where I want to go. Yeah, I’ll keep you posted.

The streets are actually pretty easy to figure out, which is nice. They are numbered, and the higher they go you know your are going North. This I never knew, so for those of you seasoned New Yorkers can take a coffee break through this next paragraph. The buses only go East to West (and west to east, obvs), while the subways travel North to South and vise versa. I also have yet to take the kids on the bus because of the stroller issue, but I’m sure that will come in time too. I am so sick and tired of that blasted stroller, one is so limited to the stores you can go into. OK, the POST OFFICE has ten steps leading up to it. Are you kidding me? And Anthropologie? 4 steps up! Nothing comes between me and my Anthro fix though, I’ll hoist them on my shoulders if I have to. Grocery stores have checkout lanes that aren’t wide enough to fit a stroller, so I have to park them in back of the belt, pay, and reverse the stroller out. This is really amusing to my fellow New Yorkers with their busy, important lives that they are always late for. So you could say that there are parts of the city that don’t cater to mothers or handicapped people well, but there are other areas that do very well. Our big adventure yesterday was a Trader Joe’s run- Trader Joe’s is a saving grace. While I haven’t mastered pushing a double stroller and a shopping cart at the same time, I still managed to get enough food for a week and they delivered it to us an hour later. This TJ’s had 20 TWENTY checkout lanes… OMG. The best part? Finding J’s favorite foods from back home here, and at the same prices. Thank you TJ’s!

There are parks, and NICE parks all over the place. I’ve actually started to meet some friends with children the same ages as mine, and I couldn’t be happier. J seems ambivalent to meeting new friends but I know that finding someone his own age will be really good for him. My building has no less than 5 mini parks, movies outdoors every Monday night, a children’s play room, a pool and a preschool. We did laundry today, the three of us, and they even had a blast doing that… playing bumper cars with the laundry carts. We have yet to find a decent, kid friendly restaurant but I’m sure I can find one with a little digging.

We have so many adventures in store for us, and while some things are more difficult, many things are much easier. And more exciting. You never know who you are going to meet on the streets of New York City, but how fun is that? You never see the same people twice for the most part. This is a great place for us and I am so, so thrilled that this was always our destiny (did I ever tell you about the day we found out we were pregnant with Z? The very same day, the very same moment that we found out that J was accepted to NYU. Crazy, right?).

Last week we visited the Central Park Zoo, the whole family. Central Park is beautiful on it’s own, so when I found out there was a Zoo I couldn’t wait to check it out. It’s definitely small, but there is a petting zoo and a toddler fun area, and a rain forest. We will definitely go back- you know, when we get that subway situation figured out.

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