I’ve been fairly busy over the past couple of months as is the case when one as an infant. We’ve done a lot of things like travel to VA for a wedding, visit the library and pool, get a couple of colds (first time she’s been sick), and finally start walking. My plan, as I always state in the beginning of every blog post, was to write at least 2 posts a week, but it just hasn’t happened. I re-start my plan and we’ll see where it takes me.
We’re officially past the 3 month mark of me quitting my job, but in reality, I was so afraid of completing letting go, I tried, unsuccessfully, to do a couple of things on the side. Once I realized I was going to have to make a choice, I was forced to completely trust in the Universe and my own intuition. I’ve felt called to stay at home with Ellie most of her existence on this earth, but following one’s heart versus listening to one’s head is a scary thing. I’ve always had a side that is very logical, very black and white, very mathematical. I think that’s something that’s helped me be successful in life so I’m very grateful for it. But as every character asset can become a defect when out of balance, my logical side can hold me back from breaking out of my comfort zone. The interesting thing is that when I was drinking heavily, I put myself in scary situations all of the time. I was out there, living on a prayer, so to speak. I had no security, didn’t know what was going to happen from day to day, and didn’t even really have any fear about it. I created so much chaos for myself that it seems as though once getting sober, I made it a point to never live that way again. The last fourteen years have been about creating a safe, secure place for myself, clear of anything that could cause me instability. The fear of not knowing what was going to happen next has been squelched. In a way, that is good, but this year is about finding balance.
Now, I am here, finally settling in to this whole motherhood thing and the interesting thought I’ve had so far is that even though it’s what I feel like I should be doing, it’s hard. It’s really hard. I know that I’ve written about it before, but I will continue to say that it’s hard. And for a while, I kind of felt like I was failing at it, that maybe I just wasn’t cut out to be a mom, because it feels super uncomfortable a lot of the time. What I mean by uncomfortable is that she’s fussy a lot, she wants me to hold her a lot, she doesn’t understand that mommy needs to go to the bathroom, she doesn’t understand that I need to make a phone call. I have to be “on” all of the time, and I think that I’m just, kind of a selfish person that can’t be selfish anymore. When she’s happy, it’s the best thing ever, but most of the time, she’s teething, going through a wonder week, going through a growth spurt, has a cold, etc. I think the real problem lies in the fact that I am afraid to ask for help. I HATE asking for help. I was brought up to be self sufficient, and that I am, but while I understand that are women out there in the world that are single mothers and have to do it, I don’t. So ask for help. I’ve realized that I REALLY need some self care and even though I’ve started attending meetings regularly again, I need more. So I talked to my husband about this and said, I need at least 20-30 minutes of yoga a day. Can we make a deal that I can have that? He, of course, said yes. There will be times though, that only one of us can work out, and I need to say, my turn. I need to stand up for what I need because if not, I won’t be able to give Ellie the love, understanding, empathy that she needs from me.
The last thing I’ll say in this rambling post is that I’ve realized the other issue I have right now is that I’m scared of big emotions. And Ellie has some BIG emotions. Actually, I have some BIG emotions. When Ellie has her BIG emotions, my BIG emotions come up. I guess I’ve been really good at managing my life in a way that I don’t have to feel tired, angry, depressed, whatever. After having a baby, I have to deal with tired (a lot), worried, fearful, angry, hungry, depleted, etc. When Ellie sleeps really well, I sometimes check to make sure she’s breathing. I mean, having that underlying fear can take a toll on one’s psyche.
The neat thing about all of this is that I know I’m growing as a person, and that God has big plans for me (as He does for everyone). He gave me a baby that challenges my weaknesses and forces me to depend on Him for strength. Every character flaw I have is being challenged with this little baby, and as much as I am supposed to teach her about life, she is teaching me as well. I hope that my message doesn’t sound like I dislike what I’m doing because I definitely do not. I love being a mother and I think when I grow the most is when I’m challenged without the possibility of escape. And so I’m grateful to have this opportunity to look inside of myself, and continue to heal old wounds so that I can a shining light in someone else’s life.