sumo wrestlers

Lately, I’ve had to learn to write while balancing an 8 pound person on my lap. Part of this is possible due to a magical pillow called a Boppy, which has lead to the phrase “Bop me” becoming quite popular in the Rivas household.

Babies, man.

One of the things that I’ve prided myself on in the last few years has been the way that I’ve learned to wrangle my free time. I kind of look at laziness as a sumo wrestler — he will push you around and eat up all of the hours on your clock if you let him. The trick is learning how to push back. I’m not sure if this discipline sprang out of the discipline needed to lose weight, or if it was the other way around, but either way, I think both are at the very least loosely connected. You simply have to stand your ground against the sumo wrestler and refuse to budge when confronted with the prospect of plopping down in front of the TV/Internet or getting something more useful done.

Instead, I’ve somehow learned to write. I wish this was something I had learned in college. I might have a series of books finished by now, instead of just two quite rough ones. Pre-baby, I wrote in the morning and I wrote at night. I wrote when I’d rather sleep and I wrote when I was hungry or feeling mopey. It turned into a muscle I could flex.

But babies change things. I used to be able to play video games and write. Or go for a run and then write. Or go to my Krav Maga classes and write. Or watch Mad Men and write. Now I only get one or two of those things. So in place of all those wonderful toys and distractions, these days I just write. It’s my new normal. I knew that having a baby wouldn’t be as simple as inserting a person into my routine. It’d have to be built from the ground up. I’ve just made sure that writing is part of the foundation, rather then another spoke on my endless wheel of activities after work. I’m happy with the change.

So basically, the cliche is true. My daughter made me line up my priorities. She’s a pretty forceful sumo wrestler as well, I guess. But don’t tell her that. She’ll figure out how to push me around on her own some day, and then she will be well and truly dangerous.

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