Yesterday I thought we had a doctors appointment at 10 and a friend coming over for dinner at 4:30. I felt stressed about finishing all the chores I wanted to get done and I was anxious. But it turns out I wrote the date wrong on the doctors appointment (I looked at the card again and it is really hard to read) and that’s the 7th. And the friend who was coming over to dinner forgot. So I got everything done and had time to write a long blog post and a long email to my lady friend! That was way better than I hoped for.
It also looks like the shed and motorcycle ramp will be leaving my yard this weekend. Woo!
I’ve been snapping at Noah like 345% more than I should. I kind of feel like he is the last man standing in terms of people I can take my foul temper out on. It really isn’t awesome. 🙁 On that note, I’m going to go put pants on and go to the gym. Hopefully I can run out some of this aggression. Wish me luck.
Thank you for the phone calls. I really appreciate my friends. I’m trying to keep a more firm line in how much I talk about my shit with Shanna standing nearby. The last couple of times I have really unloaded about what was in my head repeatedly in a day she woke up with night terrors. Today I had the one outburst at my mom on the phone outside in the yard. Then I had one ~15 crying thing immediately following. Then I was calm the whole rest of the day. And Shanna didn’t have a night terror. That, to me, means I erred on the correct side of freaking out. I did a lot in the midst of my mom actively treating me like shit, but I did it outside and away from the kids. I did a little bit in the house with the kids nearby. Then I stopped. I was probably slower than average for the rest of the day, but I kept it together.
Mostly I did this because my friend, K, was due to come over in the morning anyway because she was coming over to babysit my kids while I went to therapy. Handy. Mostly at Jenny’s suggestion (Ack! Two Jennys! My brain is overloading and I will figure out that situation later.) I asked K to drive me down to therapy and they hung out in the park right across from the office. By the way, I’ve realized I’m going to have to do some work on my feelings around unsolicited advice. If I’m going to really do the blogging thing then I’m going to have to just deal with it. Oh man. That will make me twitchy.
And I’m up in the middle of the night trying to figure out what to think and feel about this latest development. I’m trying to decide how many cycles in my brain it gets to have. It doesn’t get as many as it wants right now. I have already decided I need a break from processing this kind of stuff right now and my mother does not have the right to override my decision making process. She doesn’t get to ruin my life anymore. I am on a semi-manic upswing right now. I am trying like hell to get upward momentum started. I can’t stop to obsess about this. Today I need to just get into my head that my mother is doing this to me because she is acting out the story in her head. She is not interested in doing the hard shitty work to break the cycles she has established. That’s not my problem. I am interested in doing that hard work. I am doing that work. Part of doing that work is stopping and telling the quiet, scared little girl inside me that she can’t actually hurt me anymore. Never again will she be allowed to send us to a monster. Tyra’s childhood was ruined too, but Shanna and Calli are escaping. My brother’s kids are escaping. One of my siblings absolutely continued the cycle but I have hope for Tyra. The way forward can’t be me staying up all night obsessing and it can’t be me feeling distracted and apathetic all day with the kids. That’s not acceptable. My life is good, wonderful, and I have all the possibilities in the world. I am not yet 30 years old. My life isn’t over yet. I get to grow up and be anyone I want to be.
Ok. I think I’m going to follow a few random paths for a while as I try to figure out which direction I want to grow in. But that’s ok. I have time.
Ok, the next stage of my life can start right now. That would be awesome. 🙂
For the previous three years since Shanna was born I have been feeling increasing levels of desire to have green in my surroundings. I miss the mountains. I miss walking outside on spring mornings and closing my eyes and hearing the mist in the trees. It was wonderful. So now I am settled in a more arid land. Clay soil and suburban lawns as far as the eye can see. Yuck. I’ve been working on amending the soil (big thanks to my cousins last year) and I’m adding plants every year. So far it seems that most plants make it and a few don’t. I always have at least a few that won’t take. I consider this the cost of doing business and move on with my life. 🙂
I need to work on creating more shade in my yard. Right now it is so directly, brutally hot that it isn’t very fun to play out there for a lot of the summer. I want there to be more greenery. I’m working on it. A friend is moving out of state (this is not going to be a net-win for me) which is very sad but she is leaving me with her extensive collection of potted plants. I could not be more thrilled.
One of these years I’ll get my hands on paving stones and I’ll start doing the hardscaping in the front yard. I kind of figure it’s ok if it takes me I while. I have a lot of springs ahead of me.
Noah humored me and spent some time out back with me this weekend. I really enjoyed that. I feel a lot of joy in being outside and I’m not sure exactly how it works for me. That sounds odd. Sometimes feeling outside is wonderful and sometimes I’m just not happy with it. I’m not sure what the conditions are specifically. I do know that early spring/late winter is my favorite. The weather is in the 60’s but the sun is shining beautifully in between much needed rain bursts. To me this feels like when God is restoring blessings upon life. It feels so peaceful out in my yard enjoying the green.
Now why the hell is everyone so damn depressed.
A blogger I admire, Sara Janssens, asks about the rhythm of her readers’ days. (Disclaimer for all involved–she is very strongly Christian and would almost certainly feel uncomfortable reading some of what I write about. Nevertheless I find her engaging, inspiring, and worthy of respect.)
I feel like I am bad at creating routine. Our days are very unpredictable. The most consistent part of our life is that I do a load of laundry (most often diapers), wash dishes, and Noah makes breakfast just about every day. I think those are the only things I can depend on happening. And sometimes we even skip days with those.
We get up. Noah makes breakfast basically every day. We either go out to breakfast or I cook maybe 5 days out of a month. It makes me very happy to lie in bed nursing in the morning while listening to him and Shanna talk in the kitchen. If Calli finishes nursing quickly I go check internet-happenings while breakfast is completed. Then (depending on how late it is) I listen to Noah read Shanna a story or he runs off to work right away. Often there is fussing around him leaving because Shanna is very very Daddy-needy lately. (Ok, she’s just clingy in general.)
When he leaves I generally start a load of laundry. Most Mondays I catch up on the laundry I was bad about doing over the weekend. I also try to do the kitchen clean up at this point. I try to do project sort of things on Mondays. Although I do make plans with friends. Sometimes we rush out of the house without doing anything extra because packing up the diaper bag and food and whatever else I want to bring with us takes a while. Tuesdays we sometimes have plans with friends but more often lately we stay home because my awesome mother’s helper comes over to play with Shanna and I do big batch cooking or project stuff I can’t do by myself with the kids. Wednesdays are normally our park days. I don’t get a whole lot done other than that because we are usually out of the house for 5-6 hours. But Wednesdays are when I pick up our milk/eggs from the co-op and the Planet Organics box is dropped off. 🙂 I look forward to that. Thursdays look like Tuesdays and Fridays are more of a wild card. We often have plans with various people, though not always. Saturdays and Sundays involve a lot of house cleaning and hanging out as a family with occasional plans with people.
It’s a fairly slow life and yet I still feel overburdened. I don’t have anything big and ongoing right now, like gardening. I’m not doing any big house projects lately. I tend to feel like the biggest part of the first year is just about putting your head down and surviving. At least that is how it worked with Shanna. I don’t get out often and I barely keep on top of household matters. This time I am still cooking extensively which didn’t happen when Shanna was tiny.
I read a lot, both online and books. I read to Shanna a lot. I sing silly songs to my children. I care too much about things on the internet. I float in a bubble of barely-connected-to-the-world. The list of people I spend time with is small and select. If you do not take joy in my children I don’t have time for you. That sounds harsh but it’s just a fact. I don’t have child-free time at the moment and if someone is uninterested in my kids then they aren’t good to spend time with for now.
I try to be calm and accepting of life being whatever it is. I try to regulate my mood and enjoy this precious time with my babies. It will be over soon. I’m not as good as I want to be at having patience, but I think I am doing ok. At the least Shanna shows no signs of being traumatized by me getting frustrated with her. I hope that things will work out.
We have no set wake up, nap, or bed time. Things just kind of flow. We eat at approximate times but even that is highly flexible. I’m slightly apprehensive because Calli is showing signs of being less happy about the irregular hours. She wants to be at home, in bed, in a dark room at 6:30. She’s not real happy about being out. This is going to be challenging. Calli is already getting to the point where she is uninterested in new people. The women in my playgroup are ok–they can hold her. Almost anyone else makes her cry.
Ok, I can think of one thing that I like about the rhythm of our days a great deal. We often cuddle together during rest times and I stroke my daughters’ hair and tell them all the things about them that I love and enjoy. I tell them how wonderful and strong they are. I point out to Shanna places where she has recently developed new skills or accomplishments and talk to her about the gradual process she endured. I tell her I am proud of how strong and brave she is. I encourage her to keep trying things she currently can’t do because I am confident that she will learn how to do them. Even on the really hard days I can always find things to talk about in a positive way. I’m proud of myself for that. I’m proud that my daughter often goes to sleep with a smile on her face because she is so very sure of being loved and adored. This is my contribution to the universe.
Periodically I get very upset with myself for not getting more done during the day. Then I stop and think about how very very little I did when Shanna was tiny. I’m doing great! 🙂 Today I ran around doing chores before Calli woke up. It was surprising that she slept till 9:30 (given that she went to bed at 6pm) so I did way more than anticipated. Whoo. I need to get my house back in shape though because the mom group is having our little Christmas party here on Saturday. Yay! I’m feeling somewhat strange about the fact that I’m not seeing my pre-kid friends much at all anymore because I made the vast majority of the effort and I’ve moved to focusing on people who return the effort. It’s… kind of an interesting feeling. But! I’m really glad I’ve had these ladies pop up to fill the void in my life. I’m really not lonely anymore.
32 days till Christmas.
12 days till I get to introduce my beautiful daughter to the awesomeness of Disneyland. The first thing she will experience is the Candlelight Processional which is a special Christmas thing they do and I’ve never seen it.
1 day until I get a new oven! A convection oven! I will get to bake again! Even though my fucking pain in the ass stupid midwife *still* hasn’t filed insurance paperwork and paying for this right now was not in my budget. (Have I mentioned that my kid is three months old and she still can’t be fucking bothered to file the paperwork? If she doesn’t file in the next five weeks we can’t file at all. And I can’t file unless I get billing information from her with codes and everything and it is no more trouble for her to get that together for me than it is to just fucking send it in herself. Oh wait. SHE PAYS SOMEONE TO DO HER BILLING AND SHE STILL HASN’T GIVEN THEM THE INFORMATION. I am so pissed. Noah thinks that taking her to small claims court is rather ungrateful given that she literally saved my life. He has a point. But I’m still really angry that she isn’t doing her job.)
Time is just plugging right along. I should post more just to give rbus something to read. 🙂
It was a good weekend. We didn’t make it up to the clothes swap in Oakland because we had appointments and awesome hang-out time down in San Jose earlier in the day. Miss C is not up for a trip to San Jose and a trip to Oakland in the same day. No way, no how. But we did do good socializing. And today felt productive. House cleaning and lots of making small progress on incremental projects. So I didn’t get much ‘completed’ today, but I got closer to being done with a bunch of different things. Uhm, if that makes sense.
Anyway! I’m thrilled about Noah’s Christmas present. But if I talk about it then it won’t be a surprise. Damnit. Avert your eyes Noah! (It has words involved. A whole bunch of them. And it’s snarky. /spoiler) I am having much fun. 🙂 You’ll like it, rbus.
I’ve been reconnecting with a lot of friends from high school. It’s remarkable how time has changed us (and not). The big thing that keeps coming up for me is how very lucky I am. My life is exactly where I want it to be. My life is very good. I have complete confidence that once I get passed this immersive newborn experience that I will get back to the grown up stuff that is part of me as well. I’m happy. Guess I kicked the crap out of that postpartum depression. 🙂 [Or I just had baby blues and I’m paranoid because I’ve spent so much of my life depressed. Either way it seems to be over.]
Instead of feeling fussy and bitter about “Oh god I’m turning 30” I feel like I am heading into the best decade of my life. Life is so good. 🙂
How’s that for sounding like an alcoholic in training? We got drunk together last night and it was glorious. We giggled and talked about silly stuff and serious stuff and realized we were getting sober again and fussy and drank some more! Then we had pretty darn awesome sex. And this morning I’m in a better mood than I’ve been in for quite some time. I think this is the first time I’ve been drunk in something like a year and a half. And I think there has only been one or two other times I’ve drunk more than a glass of wine in the past three years. I’m not actually in danger of alcoholism. 🙂
And… just because I’m a shit… I had a moment yesterday of feeling like an awesome parent with an awesome kid. We went to the tea shop for lunch at Shanna’s request. She behaved perfectly. She was a delight to behold (as every little old lady there told us). And then another little girl came in who was just a little older. The girl was extremely rude to basically everyone around her including her mom, the server, and to a lesser extent Shanna. After the girl was rude to server the server brought Shanna extra cookies saying, “Because you have been so wonderfully patient.” It was kind of funny. I was super thrilled given how much of a turkey butt Shanna has been at home lately. Ha. Save the good behavior for out in public–that’s ok. 🙂
Last night I got to babble like mad at two wonderful people I don’t see often enough. That was really awesome. I really enjoy listening to smart, educated people going off at great lengths about their passions. It gives me this strange feeling of pride when I realize that people that smart want to be friends with me. 😀
And today I was given a surprise by the mom-group I’ve been hanging out with. It’s a banner made out of construction paper with inspirational sayings for birth. Things like:
Blessed be this birth
Strong and gentle all the way to pushing!
Each wave brings me closer to having my baby in my arms
I can & I am!
I can do anything for one minute
Settling; Surrendering; Letting Go
Courage; Faith; Patience
Pain is a wave… I let it wash over me and then it is gone
My baby is big but my vagina is HUGE!
I feel quite blessed that these women have joined my life. 🙂 I hung it up over the birth tub and I keep looking at it and feeling a sort of vague hug. As an adult, and especially as a mother, I feel a very different need for the camaraderie of women. As a child and teenager I strongly preferred men/boys. I like this evolution process.
Don’t like my current mood? Wait for it… 5…4…3…2…1… There. There’s a completely different one.
Jesus Christ on a Pogo Stick I’d like to be able to have a consistent mood for more than half an hour. And I’d like to not feel horribly terribly depressed. And I’d like to not be so angry that I really and truly do seriously consider keying the asshole who parked next to me in such a way that I literally could not get into my vehicle. (Luckily there were more nimble non-pregnant people with me who could drive.) I was mellow for at least a little while yesterday. In between the intermittent temper tantrums and fuss.
I want my body back. I want my hormones to get off this fucking roller coaster. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH I don’t know how I am going to handle four more weeks. 🙁 I’m at this place where I really need help (thank you Miss Jenny for once again rescuing me this pregnancy) but I’m pretty worried about fucking up friendships by asking for help right now because I’m pretty seriously not a nice person. (Jenny is being patient and all but she has the audacity to want to LEAVE THE COUNTRY on Tuesday. I’m going to be screwed.)
Just breathe. Just breathe.
I was up from 3:30 to 5:30 dealing various uhm physical complaints. Not my favorite. It really is good that I have my wonderful sunshine girl here to remind me of just how worthwhile the suffering is. I’ve been feeling extra schmoopy about Shanna lately even as I have zero energy to play with her and entertain her. I’m feeling some feelings about losing the ‘only’ experience. It has been so very wonderful to be able to just focus on her for the last two years. I’m feeling nervous about having to split my attention.
TBD is moving much less just lately. It’s pretty common for babies to calm down just before labor so I’m petting my belly and saying at least another week. (The birth tub doesn’t get here till next Monday.) 4 more days until I am technically eligible for a home birth. eeeeeek.
Noah is still the best boy ever. I am so so so so lucky to have him in my life. <3
I spend most of my time on lj posting about being unhappy or talking about Shanna. That is totally not representative of my every day so uhm, here’s a post that is less depressing.
Today is a good day. I got a little bit of yard work done out front. It’s been bugging me so I’m glad I’ve gotten around to it. I scheduled house cleaning stuff for the next several months so that I can stop feeling bad about how little cleaning I do. (Noah [whom I do not spend nearly enough time talking up–he’s so fabulous] does most of the ‘picking up’ so our house isn’t too bad, but he doesn’t really like doing the deeper cleaning.) Currently it sucks for me to bend over and do it so we decided that three or four months of someone else cleaning our house was a Good Idea. The vast majority of this additional spending right now is coming out of the much larger than anticipated tax refund, so I am thanking my lucky stars that we got it. I really and truly see the financial privilege I have these days and I feel so grateful that I have it. Money doesn’t buy happiness, but it sure can do a lot of work towards making life easier so that you have less stress. That leads to increased happiness. So I thank anyone upstairs who is listening that my life is so easy at this point.
For all that I’m not a great pregnant person I am deeply grateful that this pregnancy is easier than Shanna’s. I’m super tired. I have a lot of random body discomfort. I’m cranky. But I haven’t puked once! I am not so completely listless that I am not functioning! I do manage to take Shanna out to play at least once a week and I’m arranging for her to have more opportunities than that with other people. I’m cranky with her, but she’s spectacular about telling me, “It’s not nice to yell at me.” Which really puts a fast halt to my temper tantrums. Having a two year old call me on my behavior is incredibly humbling in a good for me way. I really love having her.
I have been doing a lot of thinking about the sexual assault stuff and I am feeling… better isn’t quite the word but less disturbed. I’m feeling more like I really have handled things in a way that is ultimately good for me. Of course I have done things poorly at times. Of course I have not always been in the best place right that minute. But overall I don’t feel like I am a terrible non-functioning crazy person. And sometimes good enough is good enough. 🙂
Mostly I had a really good weekend. I really love my family. I have a wonderful, supportive, amazing husband. I feel like I had the most perfect-for-me little girl possible. I like her so much. I’m rather excited about meeting kid 2.0. If Noah and I combined to make one kid this awesome, what will 2.0 be like? I strongly suspect that next kid will be very very different from Shanna. I base this on the differences in the pregnancy. This kid is active in a way that Shanna wasn’t. This makes me slightly nervous because of the potential differences in sleeping habits. Shanna has been an awesome sleeper since birth. But we’ll roll with it. Whatever happens is what is meant to happen. I think that I am nervous about having expectations this time. Before Shanna I had almost zero exposure to babies. I had no idea what to expect and then she was so easy. (Maybe my memory is already getting fuzzy… who knows.) Now I’ve had a kid so I have a bit more of the ‘I know about kids’ attitude. I’d be better off assuming that I know nothing again. 🙂
So, yeah. Life is plugging along. I have 6ish weeks to go. I’m nervous but looking forward to the birth. It will be a rather different experience this time. Shanna has expressed rather strongly that she wants to be at the birth so that’s going to be interesting. Luckily nipple stimulation is a big help because there is no way I will be able to keep her from nursing during labor. 😀 I’m really looking forward to tandem nursing for some weird, masochistic reason. Something about it just seems really… I don’t know… motherly? Like even if I feel like psychologically I am not always the best at mothering my body is doing GREAT at the physical parts! I can’t quite figure out why I am looking forward to it so much. Too many years on MDC. They have infected my brain. 😀
So yeah. It’s a good day after having a couple of other good days in a row. 🙂
I have a rather spectacular amount of work I need to do and very little motivation/energy to do it. There are a few problems that are intersecting here to make this situation harder. Shanna is… even more festive than she was for interfering in my working. Woo toddlerhood! I am an extrovert so I really thrive on being around people, but the physical load involved in going out somewhere and managing Shanna kind of eliminates the benefit of being around people. This blows.
So I would really love it if someone would come over and talk to me while I do work in my house. I feel way more motivated to work that way. I don’t particularly need help, although there are particular chores I wouldn’t turn down help with, but mostly I would just love the adult company. 🙂
Oh, and dear god I need to get some of that meat out of my freezer. Please contact me if you have any interest in the grass fed beef. Laura isn’t so thrilled about storing my 1/4 until this 1/4 is sold. (I don’t blame her in the slightest but I really max out at 1/2 a cow in my freezer.)
I love getting to spend three days in a row with Noah. <3 Mostly we puttered and got house chores done but we had a few breaks for fun. Two things in particular: we took Shanna to Build a Bear because she has often expressed that she wants a bear that is -just hers-. All of her stuffed animals are hand me downs and I think she is tired of hearing that 'x' thing was Mommy's or Aunt Jenny's or Daddy's or... :D So she picked a blue bear and named him Blue. Alrighty then. :) And she did animal role play for the first time. I thought that was pretty cool and noteworthy. She picked a duck, specifically the anthropomorphic Elmer from The Sissy Duckling which has been one of her favorite longer books since she was too small to sit through a long book. 🙂
Pregnancy is all festive and such. I feel ginormous. As I see pictures of other people who are at about the same stage of pregnancy as me I feel confirmed in feeling ginormous. Why am I so much bigger than average?! Oy. Still not gaining weight. I’m currently reading Bradley’s, Husband-Coached Childbirth and it has some good pointers once you wade through all the obnoxious Christian references.
Today is going to be way too busy. I’m tired already. There will be over 100 miles of driving today. Ugh. But I’ll get to see my niece graduate from high school. That will be a good thing. I’m really glad she made it.
No wonder I’ve had a few people call/IM me to see if I’m ok. I don’t skip a week on lj very often without saying, “HEY I’M GOING OUT OF TOWN”. Uhm… yeah.
So I’m still feeling fairly depressed. It’s not fun. I’m trying to deal with the individual issues as they come up. Lots of crying. But I’m not the kind of depressed where I feel suicidal or like cutting so I consider this pretty manageable. The therapy appointment is for the 28th cause that’s when she gets back from a conference.
I’m exhausted and fussy. My house is a complete and total mess and I’m having a really hard time caring. I have way too much shit to get done and I will only be home for a whole day one day for the rest of the month. I’m really really tired. I feel like my ambition is maybe not at an all time low but it’s pretty pathetic.
I’ve had a great visit with my midwife this week and a really good conversation last night with a friend wherein she basically said, “Yeah we aren’t having issues so it’d be good if you stopped thinking I hate you.” (only minor paraphrasing, I swear.) It’s a really good thing that people are so patient with me. I appreciate it lots. I also appreciate that regardless of my depth of current self loathing my friends continue to whack me in the head and say, “Yeah, well I like you; so shut up.” It’s all useful and shit.
And I have the coolest midwife ever. Completely supportive and awesome. No weight gain but my uterus is now measuring several weeks ahead even though I’ve been exactly on target so far. I’m working on my issues around childbirth and I’m pretty sure I’m hiring a doula. There is a particular chick I’ve known/been talking to for years whom I really like and that seems like a good plan. I really really really need a level of support this time I didn’t get last time. I’m all kinds of emotionally delicate. It’s kind of funny that I was physically fucked during my pregnancy with Shanna but I was 100% confident in how I would handle labor. This time I’m not awesome physically but head and shoulders better than last time and I’m completely freaked about labor. Brains are weird.
That sound is of me hitting the wall. I have been sleeping a lot. But the toll of physical exertion this week has seriously worn me out. I’m weepy and insecure. I’m glad I don’t have anything I have to do today or tonight and tomorrow should be mellow too. My lower back still hurts even though I got a really nice massage.
I sorta wish I could head down to Kiva tomorrow but it would require help with kiddo. Freakin kids.
I am so tired I can barely move. Doing manual labor from 9:30 am yesterday till about 6 pm was really really hard on my body. But! I’m thrilled with the progress. I took (mostly) before pictures and I’m taking pictures today and I will take more pictures as I go of the Great Gardening Project of 2010. My cousin’s boyfriend laughed at me when I told him this project has been like 4 years in the making and we just haven’t gotten it done. He’s not the sort to ‘not get to’ projects. Which is why I like that I can pay him to come to my house and work. 😀 I will post pictures at some point.
A friend was supposed to bring me seeds this morning but she woke up not feeling well and canceled. Not so secretly I’m kind of glad I don’t have a complete full day of work. I woke up way too early (5:30) but started cat napping at 7:30 and really fell asleep by about 8:30 and didn’t wake up till 10. This is why my house is thoroughly toddler-proof so Shanna can’t get in too much trouble. 😛
My cousin and her boyfriend will be here around 1:30 and I have this ridiculously massive guilt complex about having them here working and not working myself so that is the end of my slack time today. I’m starting to feel slightly nervous about the semi-busy weekend we have planned. I think I will not stir from the couch on Friday in complete exhaustion. The cousin/boyfriend will be here today and tomorrow. Then my wonderful Taylor will be here Thursday and I will be getting a massage. I am going to need it so much. But Taylor likes to keep busy and do stuff around the house so I will probably save like one or two projects for him so he can feel all useful. I’ll see if there is anything that needs a tall person. 😛
I’m really really feeling the excitement and joy that comes from productivity this week. I receive such a strong boost of self confidence when I am productive. It’s kind of funny.