Changes and Dreams

I used to pride myself on being able to handle change well – even craving change.  But these past several months have challenged that thought.

I have had a lot of change.  Like, if you ever take one of those life stressor polls, I’d rate pretty darn high.  I actually just took a quiz (the Holmes-Rahe Stress Inventory) and scored well above the high rating and they predict I have an 80% chance of having a major health incidence in the next 2 years.  So…um…

Every little change is now effecting me in a negative way.  For instance, our neighbors moved.  We weren’t close.  I knew their names and would wave if we saw each other – but that’s about it.  But now at night, when I’m washing the baby bottles, I look out our kitchen window and don’t see the familiar view of our neighbor sitting on her couch working on her laptop.  And it makes me sad.  I feel out of control.  And I hate that.

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In order to make myself feel more in control over all these out of my hands changes, I tend to dream about my life in the future.  I don’t dream too far in advance, maybe 6 months to 2 years.  And I’m not unrealistic.  I don’t envision myself winning the lottery or moving to France.  I envision real-life possibilities.  And it helps.  It gives me a sense of calm and control, even if the control is just an illusion.

But I don’t tell anyone my future life visions.  I think it’s because I’ve had goals I’ve shared in the past, and didn’t make them, and felt horrible about myself.  It was embarrassing.  So I stopped voicing my dreams.  Which is sad.  I kind of need to voice these, right?  I mean, how can I make my life more of what I want, and make sure my husband and I are both seeing the same, or close to same, things – unless I share these.

It’s hard to find time to talk seriously with him now.  In depth conversations are a thing of the past.  We now talk about poopy diapers, what we can scrounge out of the fridge for dinner, and our deep desire for more sleep.  Nothing serious.  But that’s my goal for the weekend.  To voice my dreams.  I may have to give a dream disclaimer.  Something along the lines of “is this doesn’t happen, it’s OK.”  Give myself a little out in case I change my mind, lose my way, etc.  Maybe that will make the conversation a little easier.

Once I share them with him, I’ll share them with you.  So stay tuned…

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I didn’t know

As I went for a walk in the late-morning heat, after my podcast ended, it came.  The guilt.  The sadness.  The need to fight back tears.  This time it worked.  I didn’t cry.  Sometimes it doesn’t and the tears flow.

I have a wonderful life.  I have a great husband.  I have a beautiful baby boy.  But I didn’t know.

I knew that life would change when we became parents.  I knew things would get trickier, stickier and crazier.  But I didn’t know the big change that would come.

I read a lot.  I read professional sites.  I read blogs.  When talking about getting pregnant, actively trying, and being pregnant.  I read.  Asked friends for advice.  I left no stone unturned.  But I still didn’t know.

I knew that babies cried.  I knew that they spit-up.  I even knew that babies got reflux that caused them pain.  But I didn’t know how difficult that could be.

I didn’t know that my baby would spend the first 6 weeks of his life crying, eating and spitting up almost everything that he ate, leaving me exhausted, frustrated and baffled as to what was going on.  And I didn’t know how difficult it would be to find relief for his anguish.

I knew that babies could have head shape issues.  I knew that they could end up in helmets.  But I didn’t know that they would wedge themselves in-utero in such a weird way that would not only lead to a virtually impossible delivery, but a misshaped head that is virtually impossible to fix without interventions.

I didn’t know the guilt.  I knew I would worry.  I knew I would feel pressure.  But I didn’t know I’d feel horrible for “not growing him right”.  I know that’s not true – but the guilt still remains.

And I didn’t know the extent that outside pressures would create chaos in my should-be happy home.

I didn’t know that this would create a perfect storm of emotional upheaval for me.  I never read about babies going from formula to formula, med to med, and still not finding relief for severe reflux.  I never heard of the pain of trying to position your baby in just the right way to best “fix” their head shape problem.  And I never knew that trying to be a good Mom would cause me so much agony, let alone what other issues lie outside my motherhood journey.

So that’s why I’m restarting this blog.  I have a happy life.  I have had some severe struggles and continue to have struggles.  I know that will never end, but if I knew, maybe things could have been a little easier.  So I’m writing this so others may not say “I didn’t know”