Archives For Parenthood

Maybe I’m a Bitch

June 18, 2019 — 1 Comment

My last post was about the ‘Fun Mom’ being dead. I felt ‘negative’ throwing that ‘bad energy’ into the world, but I also felt really great when I wrote all of those very true feelings down and released them.

I very wholeheartedly wrote something like ‘the Fun Mom is dead and that’s okay.’

Let me tell you- killing the Fun Mom and Being Okay with it are Entirely different subjects.

Relationships are Incredibly important to me. Always have been. I like to support my friends through any and all situations, and I like to be someone you can lean on, at all times, for any reason.

My social calendar is often jam packed and I am usually running around to three different areas of town in one day, with social events with two different people, while getting a full day of work in, and somehow still doing the groceries and making dinner for my hubby and I.

Now that I’ve had Sadie, things are Very different.

A drive to Canmore to see old friends in 24-degree weather, with her stuck in a hot, sweaty car seat for a 1.5 hour drive one-way, and logistically figuring out when/where to best time my visit to feed her every 4 hours becomes a lot of hassle. Not to mention time and gas.

Only one of my Canmore friends who I used to be close with comes to see me in Crossfield. My family and I appreciate her efforts very much. Another one of my Canmore friends comes to see me when she can catch a ride with her mom, as she has no vehicle of her own yet. I very much appreciate when she makes her way here as well.

The others- they were there for my gender reveal, my baby shower, my birthday party where they listened to my baby girl’s heartbeat with a stethoscope and we all cooed about what she might look like- they spent Hours at my house near Canmore, eating dinners that I had prepared for them, and then hours on my couch, spilling their guts about their latest relationship or life problem, and I was Incredibly excited for these people to become my child’s Aunty.

She is just over two months old now, and None of those women have come to see me.

I’ve driven to Canmore 4 times in the 8 weeks that Sadie has been alive, to see Sadie’s old family doctor, and to try and maintain those relationships.

I’ve sent out pleading text messages asking ‘what did I do wrong and how can I fix it?’ and received various responses that kind of broke my heart.

And I’ve had to let that go. And it’s hurt.

Being a friend that you could rely on has been really important to me. And I’ve had to bump that value waaaayyy down on my list of priorities. And it’s hurt.

Then there’s my phone.

I used to be on that thing All. The. Time.

Send me a text? Boom-response. Send me something funny on Messenger? Boom- response. Send me something interesting on Insta? Boom- response.

I went to the Rural Women in Business conference a few weeks ago and one of the presenters had us do an exercise where you really quickly wrote down 3-5 things you value the most, and then 3-5 things you like doing that make you happy, and then 3-5 things you find yourself doing the most during your day, and then told us to jot down a really quick Coles notes version of what our typical daily schedule looks like.

Then she got us to go back and look at the things we valued, and to compare that list with what we normally fill our days with.

I was Floored.

I love going on 5K runs. I love going on dog and stroller walks with Ryan. I love sitting in my greenhouse snuggling my baby. I love sitting on my lawn chair by myself, lapping up the sun. I love listening to music and singing while I drive. I love writing blog posts.

When I looked at my daily schedule- NONE of these things were there.

I was on the phone calling people every time I drove, not listening to music and/or enjoying the silence of a nice highway drive.

I was driving to other people’s houses and sitting in their backyards, but not enjoying my own.

When I was in the greenhouse, snuggling my baby, I was busy one-handed texting back to my friends who had written me earlier.

My dog was getting crappy 15-minute walks around the neighborhood so that I could zoom back and forth in my car and visit people and attend various appointments.

I ran a 5K once at 6 weeks, and felt Amazing about it for the next 4 days, and then didn’t build running into my daily schedule because there was already too much in there.

And then we bought a truck and a trailer to go camping and ‘relax’ on the weekends, and we go camping with lots of other people and other dogs, and our dog hates other dogs so I have to manage and contain her behavior, as well as the feeding requirements of my 4-hour feeding baby, as well as her not being able to be out in direct sunlight or get too cold or get too many mosquito bites- and so I find myself retreating inside the trailer to snuggle the baby and be with the dog, while Ryan and our friends drink by the fire.

And then I feel like a ‘loser’.

And I look at my dwindling friendships and I feel like a ‘failure’.

And I want to ask or tell people things like ‘can you come to my house- I can no longer come to yours’, or ‘I don’t want to phone you on my drive to the South today- I want to sing to my music on the highway instead’, or ‘please stop texting me 11 times a day- I do not have the time to respond to you and seeing 19 text notifications on my phone gives me anxiety’- but then I fear sounding like a ‘bitch’.

My mom is at my house right now.

She arrived a week ago and is staying until July 20th and I am SO glad to have her here.

Since getting here, she’s done approximately 1100 loads of laundry, and 1300 loads of dishes because our dishwasher shit the bed last week while Ryan was away on business. She’s made me meals and bottle-fed my baby and mowed my lawn and baked Ryan a Father’s Day angel food cake from scratch.

She stayed at home this weekend to be with the dog while we went camping, and she stayed with Sadie this morning at home so that I could do my first of what I hope to be daily 5K runs, and I am INCREDIBLY grateful for all those things.

But today we had to zip out to Superstore to get birthday prezzies for my niece and nephew- a to-do list item from last week that I had failed at. I had a dinner date scheduled at 5 pm tonight with my very bestest friend so that I could take her to dinner and celebrate her accomplishment of finishing her first year of her Master’s in Social Work, while she was working full-time, running a household and raising two children under 10 (Hero!).

So Mom, Sadie and I went to Superstore today at 2:30, and did what I had to do, and left. As we were walking back to the car, Mom said, ‘where are we going next?’ and I said ‘Home.’ And she said ‘but it’s only 3:40, we have lots of time.’ And I said ‘Mom, I told you, I’m picking Tina up from her work at 5, and I live in Crossfield. We just have enough time to get these things home and Sadie out of the car seat before I have to get right back in the car and drive to Calgary.’ And she pouted and said, ‘well that’s not very fun.’

So I laughed it off and consoled her that we’ll have more ‘fun’ tomorrow.

Tonight, at 9:40, after a very long day that started with a 5 am bottle feed, then a 5K run, then a trip to Airdrie to fetch family things, then a drive to Calgary and dinner with a great friend, I drove home to Crossfield, walked in and told Mom before bed that Sadie’s vaccinations were tomorrow in Airdrie at 1:20 pm.

And she looked at me and said ‘well that’s not very fun. You promised me fun tomorrow and vaccinations aren’t very fun.’

And I effin lost it. I grabbed my baby off my husband’s chest and stormed off to our bedroom, where I raged about everything for about half an hour before I felt any better.

At the end of my rant, he said ‘sounds like a blog post’, so here I am.

I used to be a great friend. Now I’m not.

I used to be on my phone all the time. Now I’m not.

I used to be hyper social. Now I’m not.

I used to be fun. Now I’m not.

Let the chips fall where they may. I am DONE with pleasing others first, and that HAS to be okay.

If I lose even more friendships because of it, so be it.

If saying all this makes me a ‘bitch’, maybe I’m a bitch.

XO, Em

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As a new mom, I have SO many things I want to blog about. And as a new mom, I have NO time to expand upon any of them.

So until I have the time to actually flesh out any of these quotes into full blog posts, here is a compendium of sh*t that has actually come out of my mouth as a new mom over the past 7 weeks. (These are copy and pasted from various FB messenger and text conversations I’ve had with friends.)

  • I’m so excited for you to meet my crotch fruit!!!! Eeeee!! Text me when you’ve finished parking and I’ll meet you at the elevator doors of the 6th floor. 
  • If you wanna meet the baby, it’ll cost ya! Large dark Americano for Ryan, medium tazo passionfruit lemonade tea for me ;)-
  • Picture the bottom of your vagina hole closest to your butt part. Get a knife. Slit from that part of your vagina and drag the knife from the vagina bit alllllmost to the start of the asshole. (Yeesh! Don’t know who I said that to- but I spared no expense with the description of my episiotomy!!)
  • It feels like a gaping wound, leaving the hospital without her. And it is. A literal and figurative wound. I carried her for 40 weeks and now I drive away from her. It is harder than I thought. I know rationally she comes home with us on Friday, but my emotions tether me to her like tightly-wound string and the further I drive away from her in that little blue bed in NICU, the tighter and tighter that string cuts into my heart.
  • I am not a Breast Feeder- but I AM a Milk Maker. I am not a milk Dud. 
  • Having a newborn baby is like having a constant hangover. The only difference is that when you look down at the evidence (empty bottles, your poor decisions, vomit…), you look down at the evidence (a human child, created in love, born in pain, and now All Yours to protect) and you don’t feel bad anymore. You feel exhausted, but overjoyed.
  • I want people to bring us food, or a baked treat or something. I want people to put it on our doorstep and give us a hug and then drive away. Does such a thing happen? We need a pick-me-up, but we’re too tired to talk or to even say what it is we need. Help? Did you guys feel this way too? Everything is a blur- a big happy overwhelming blur and you forget to eat. You both know that she had 110 ml of formula at 6:30 am and that she needs 100 ml more at 10:30 am but you yourself haven’t eaten anything since yesterday.
  • Honestly, the amount of strength that Ryan and I have had as a couple through this first week of postpartum is the Singlemost reason if I could go back and do this differently- I wouldn’t. It has deepened, tested and strengthened our love and commitment to each other more than anything I could have Ever imagined.
  • I am SO glad that first week is over. Today feels almost normal. Like the reset button has been pushed. Our new normal began at 6:30 this morning. 
  • Oops- gotta go. Trusted a fart.
  • Everything we do is one tiny win, dangling by a tiny little thread, over a pit of insanity.
  • The best part about yesterday was we were so frickin busy all day and so friggin exhausted that when I got out of the shower, I was like ‘something’s different- but I don’t know what…’ And then I realized it was my tits!!!! The Milk is GONE!!!!! I got my little, tiny, floppy titties back and I’m Soooo happy!!!!
  • If it weren’t for you, I would be in the hospital right now on a locked unit. I have NO idea why women don’t talk about this shit- it literally Floors me that postpartum is This hard and Nobody warns you. I thought miscarriage was a highly guarded topic- It doesn’t hold a candle to postpartum. You can at least get one or two women friends/colleagues to open up about miscarriage if you say the right things and ask the right questions. But WHY aren’t more women warning OTHER women about Postpartum!!!???
  • Oh mannnnn- this blog is going to be Heavier than a toddler’s diaper after a Chuck E Cheeze birthday party.
  • So- in answer to your hormones/emotions/meds/feelings question- It’s been Really, Really hard for me, and having Sadie in a hospital/NICU setting has re-opened pretty much every trauma I’ve ever had. 
  • Hahaha funny you say that!!! An East Indian woman saw me with my EIGHT DAY OLD in my arms at Toys R Us buying newborn pants with my midwife holding my car seat in her hand and tapping my debit with the other and she goes: ‘How old!?’ And I beam and say: ‘8 Days’ and she drops her jaw, widens her eyes and goes ‘And you are Here, at a mall? Looking this good??!!’ I laughed and said ‘Well, the other 7 days I’ve been a mess! But today I felt not like a mess, so I’m here.’ And her and her husband smiled at me, kind of like tipping their hat, and walked away, speechless. (Canadian postpartum culture is Crazy. I’ve since heard that almost every other culture has like a family sit-in type of postpartum rite of passage, where it is expected that Mom and baby stay in bed and family brings food and necessities to them. In Canada, it’s like, ‘Oh, you just had a baby? Cool- put your adult diapers on and go to Walmart. Your fridge is empty and it’s not going to fix itself.’)
  • Let me call you back; I just sneezed and peed myself.
  • I had a dream last night that I was on my hands and knees swaddling Sadie underneath me and Mika latched onto me and started humping me doggie-style and I couldn’t fu*king pry her off of me for the life of me. (Postartum sleep deprivation dreams are really twisted and vivid!)
  • The moment Kate and Bob walked through my door, validated my emotions, validated my vagina pain, told me that everything I was experiencing postpartum was NORMAL, I no longer had anxious thoughts. They spoke normally, acted normally, let me sit in a chair where I was comfortable, told me my baby was beautiful, and they LET me be in pain, and they honoured my need to rest. 
  • Sadie Loves the bottle. Loves the soother. Shits like a bear. Pees like a firehose. Eats 100 ml every four hours like clockwork. Doesn’t fuss. Smiles when she sleeps.
  • My girl is constipated- the love I have for this child is Unbelievable. Just to lay beside her and hold her hand and let her rest her other hand on my face and pray that she poops is an honour. 
  • P.S. I’m texting you with Sadie on my lap waiting for her to finish filling her pants with shit so that I can change her diaper and start my day hahah. Mom life is so glorious!!
  • Today she was hungry every 2 hours and every waking minute wanted alllll the snuggles. I barely got a single thing I wanted done, and I had to do everything with one hand cuz the other hand was holding her all day, and she puked and shit on me at the same time this morning, and I didn’t get a meal in me until 7 pm, and when Ryan came home I was climbing the walls, I just needed to get out of the house So bad.
  • My day is so great!!! I got to blow-dry my hair and put on real clothes! I’m wearing Real Pants with a Zipper!!! First time since 20 weeks pregnant!!! Wheee!!
  • I am Beyond lucky. I hate the word ‘blessed’. But I feel it.

And there you have it, a full range of feelings, all captured right here on this page. And on any given day of postpartum, you can feel any and/or allll of those things. Let me know if any of these quotes resonated with you- I Love hearing other Mom’s experiences. And if there’s any thought you think I should flesh out into a bigger blog post as a topic, let me know that too. It would help me funnel my thoughts so that the next time I get 2 golden hours of quiet to myself, I can hit the ground running.

XO, Em