I have this distinct memory of when my son was about five months old. Every morning when I got out of bed I couldn't stand up straight, physically impossible, for at least half an hour. After a lot of pain and failed attempts to accept the pain I came to a sad conclusion. How I picked up my son and the frequency with which I had to bend over and pick him up, and the amount of time I carried him around had to change.
I adjusted the lift, used more knees. I sat down before I picked him up. I sat down more when he wanted to be held. I adjusted, I made it work and I slowly improved the quality of my life again. There was a down side however. Changing the way I held my son meant that I had to slow down, sit more, do less. It gave an exaggerated enormity to a feeling I was already struggling with. When I have a small child I largely feel like I am running in mud. A feeling that I will never move fast again. That all things I want to get done will never in fact be concluded again.
Life moved on. I lived in a constant state of frustration. When he learned to walk I cheered. Then I realized that I would have to stand and wait for him and walk slow. This phase was followed by various incarnations of "I do it mommy" phases where I had to watch, with mounting senses that nothing would ever get "done".
Now that son is four. I have a Chiropractor. I have a ten month old. My back lasted longer this time, but it is about to give out on me for good. My days of multitasking are limited and numbered. Creeping in is the sense that I am running in mud. Breathlessly getting absolutely no where, all the time. I'm also getting the distinct feeling that I didn't learn my lesson the first time. Maybe slowing down is a good thing. Maybe I can learn to watch my child move in slow motion with more compassion and joy. Maybe.
Maybe I will just learn to calm down a bit more and philosophically not change much at all. Time will tell. So will my back.