A lot of work goes into getting baby girl to settle, to calm for sleep. Continuous motion. Rhythmic patting. A firm hold. Every muscle in my body is flexed or tensed so that her little body can relax.
Perhaps she senses our general unsettled-ness here.
We’ve lived in Montreal for six months. Until this past weekend, we still had boxes in the living room and kitchen that were half-unpacked. There are still two in our bedroom taking up valuable floor space. The only reason the others finally got emptied and taken to the recycling is because we had company coming, Hubby’s cousins, who were here helping their son move into his college apartment. Even with those boxes out of the way, I was still embarrassed for them to come here. Every surface is cluttered with random stuff, things I haven’t yet found a place for, disorder everywhere I look. And until recently, I haven’t felt the slightest motivation to change it.
I haven’t written much about Hubby’s job or our life here in this new city. There’s a reason for that. Up until last week, Hubby was sure he was on the verge of being fired, even though his contract goes through February and is supposed to be renewed for another year after that. His professor/boss is a bit of a drama queen. He’s also a perfectionist and a workaholic and expects the same from everyone around him. He constantly questions Hubby’s use of time and requested a detailed account of Hubby’s work days for the four weeks he was on vacation. His emails are harsh and condescending, and he treats Hubby like his personal slave. But in person, apparently, he’s a totally different guy. The problem is, Hubby goes weeks without seeing him in person, gets a bunch of sternly worded emails, and fears for his job security and our future.
It was so bad that Hubby decided to start applying for jobs for next year. Which freaked me the fuck out because I just kept imagining his job search pissing off the professor, Hubby getting fired, and us being jobless and homeless in a foreign country come March.
After last week’s meeting, however, Hubby assures me this is not the case. They had a good chat, cleared the air, clarified expectations, and even had a few laughs. And the thing is, the professor actually needs to hang onto Hubby for the second year of his contract, otherwise the money he’s using to pay Hubby gets yanked and he doesn’t get to use it at all. (Not exactly sure how that works–it’s an academic thing.)
Long story slightly less long, we’re staying for a while, and I might as well settle in. That means hanging the artwork that now lines our floors instead of the walls. And maybe even making a few friends. I’ve signed up for some mama-baby classes that start this month. Hopefully baby girl will get some much-deserved sleep by then so we can both enjoy them.