Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Myself, the way i see me.

The past

   I was born to young parents who loved me very much.  I have been told I was a difficult child, but also thoughtful and generous. My father passed away when I was 8, due to an accident at work. It goes without saying that this had made a big impact on my life, I have never stopped missing my father, wondering how things would be if he were here… I doubt I ever will. I was pretty much an outcast growing up; part of me was fine with this because I didn’t like the drama that seemed to surround most people but another part of me longed for more companionship.  I moved around a bit in my late teens/early twenties. I made choices I regret, as I think most people do.  

   I met my fiance a few years before we started dating and had a hardcore crush on him, but never thought he would be interested in me. Plus either he was involved with someone else or I was. Finally in February of 2006, he told me he also had feelings for me and we’ve been together since.  We have had difficult times but overall I feel we have had a very positive, loving relationship. I refuse to imagine my life without him.
   On August 19th of 2010 we brought our son Samuel into this world.  Growing up I dreamed of having a family, being a stay at home mother and wife.  Then for a period of time I didn't think I wanted to have children. I told people that I was too spontaneous, that I didn't want to have to worry about not being able to do certain things, or go certain places because I had a little life to consider. But I think a part of me was afraid of being as close to another person as I knew I would be to my child. Having lost my father at such a young age, a guidance councilor I confided in a lot while growing up, my grandfather very unexpectedly, then a boy I was very close to, then my best friend growing up shortly after that, I was very aware of how unpredictable life was and I knew then, as I still know now, that I couldn't handle losing my child. However in time I longed once again to have a family, I felt I had to embrace life and focus on the positives and not worry about the what if’s. I came to a point where I felt that the relationship I had with Kevin was very strong and deep, I knew he was the one I wanted to spend my life with, to have a family with. I also wanted to be young enough to enjoy all of my child/children’s youth…so if we were going to have a family, we needed to do it, and soon.  So we made the decision, I got pregnant and gave birth to an amazing person who has changed me in many ways.

The current

   I used to think that life, pregnancy, childbirth wasn’t that big of a deal…wasn’t special. I thought about the process on a very scientific level, it wasn’t at all a miracle to me; someone having a healthy baby wasn’t in any way remarkable. Having Sam totally changed that…. Pregnancy and childbirth are now very remarkable to me. I feel so very blessed and thankful that I was able to have the vaginal birth I desired, and that my son was born healthy and continues to be. I have become very passionate about pregnancy, childbirth and babies. I am now one of the annoying people who see a pregnant woman or a baby and ask a million questions…although I have tried not to do that as much, and unless I know the person I won’t touch the belly or baby.  But I want to, I want to feel every pregnant belly and hold every little baby.  I would love to become a doula, or a lactation consultant. Breastfeeding has also become a passion of mine. I feel that every women who has the physically capability to breastfeed should. I feel too many doctors push formula, often using fear as a tactic which is a very successful. I think too many women feel/say they were not capable to breastfeed, when in fact they were…but just did not have the knowledge and/or strength to do so.  But even with my strong passion for breastfeeding I don’t want to make women who do not breastfeed feel badly. I honestly don’t want people in general to feel bad, especially when they feel they are doing the best they can.

   I fear I come across sometimes as being a know it all, I honestly do not believe I know it all….i actually often doubt myself. I try not to speak about a subject unless I am sure about it or I will try to make sure it is known that what I am saying is just my opinion. I tend to feel like the way I would do something is the right way, Kevin hates this and comments on it often, I need to work on being more open to doing things other peoples way, but in my defense…usually it turns out that my way is/was the better way. This often leads to me saying “see…if you had done what I said…” but it isn’t because I want to rub the bad choice in, but that I want people to listen to me and value my opinion more. I often feel my opinion isn’t valued. I pride myself on being a good listener.  I want to be a good listener because I believe it is important for people to know they are heard. And also because I want people to listen to me, and I honestly try to treat people as I want to be treated. I sometimes get frustrated easily, especially if I feel I am not being listened to, or that my opinion does not matter. I hate to feel like someone is trying to belittle me. When I am frustrated I yell, this is something I have been trying to work on…and that I will continue trying to work on. 

   I am very sensitive and sometimes needy. I need frequent reassurance that I am loved and appreciated, because I often feel unimportant. I try to let those who are important to me be aware of their importance. I am constantly telling the people I love, that I love them. I am very affectionate and I believe touch is very important. I believe touch is healing and I tend to long to be held. I cry a lot, I cry when I am angry, when I am sad, when I am scared, when I am happy…I cry too much. I also sometimes smile at inappropriate times, I will often be telling the truth about something…but my stupid grin will give the impression that I am lying.  I don’t like when someone doesn’t like me, especially If I feel they never gave me a chance, or don’t even really know me. When I don’t like someone, if I am in their presence I try to be kind and I am generally open to changing my opinion about them. Unless I simply have no respect for them, or feel that the person has no empathy or compassion for others. I don’t like for people to hurt. I have in the past said things when feeling hurt and angry myself with the purpose of hurting  the who  had hurt me but I quickly regret it and I try not to do that anymore.

   Sometimes I am late or I will cancel plans or I just won’t show up somewhere. This is something I need to work on. Sometimes when others cancel plans on me it greatly upsets me and sometimes it doesn’t bother me at all and I understand. I am unhappy with my appearance but I continue to make poor eating choices. I hate when my living space is cluttered and crave organization and neatness but I am sometimes a poor housekeeper.  I distrust psychiatry and the pharmaceutical industry and I try to give my son natural medicine if any at all. I believe in cohabitation and most of the time I enjoy living with my mother, but also sometimes crave having more of my own space. I love to garden and do crafty things but I tend to not finish my projects.
   So, this is a summary of me the way I see myself, how I feel.  There are many things I want to change about myself; I want to be a better person. Generally I mean well and have good intentions.  I like to think that I am worth knowing, that I am overall a good person. I hope that is true. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Time goes by far too quickly!

It has been nearly a year since I’ve posted last. Samuel is now 14 months old; on the last post he was three months 3 days old. Man has a lot changed since then.

Sam rarely crawls now; he mostly walks…and runs.

He is so very curious. Anything that is of any interest to him he explores with all senses. If he cannot reach something with his hand, he will try to touch it with his feet…or move it closer to himself using his feet. It’s so fun to watch him explore the world around him.

He loves music, anytime music comes on around him he begins to dance. I can’t help but laugh every time I see his little body move to the music.

He also loves water, in any amount. He likes to move his fingers in a cup of water…or the dog’s bowl if mom isn’t fast enough to move it and he loves his swimming lessons.

He loves babies and other kids. At his swimming lessons he spends much of the time watching the other children. 

He is generous, he loves handing his mama and anyone else who is around things. (Especially the little things he finds on the carpet.)  He also likes to share what he is eating.

He still doesn’t nap much; the only place he will sleep for any long amount of time is in the car.

He is still being breastfed which is something I am very proud of. I intend to breastfeed him until he is two, it’s what is recommended and I want to do the best I can for my son. This wasn’t an easy point to reach…the beginning of our breastfeeding path was full of many negative emotions. But we made it to this point and I feel great pride to still be breastfeeding him at 14 months.

I will try to post more frequently, more about Sam…and more about myself. 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday, November 15, 2010

a response to "Mother Madness"...

Mother Madness by Erica Jong on was printed  in the Wall Street Journal on November 6, 2010, following is my response/thoughts on it.

Okay, i disliked this article. I can’t help but wonder if deep inside she feels some guilt for her own daughter being raised by the nanny and the houseman. Her daughter believes she felt “children were the death of a dream; they were the death of one's ambition”. I wonder if she feels guilt for once feeling that way Or if she still does and the nastiness she appears to feel towards attachments parenting stems from that feeling.

     First of all I feel she is wrong about there being an “orgy of motherphilia for at least the last two decades”. Sure in the last decade it seems like there have been many stars having children, but perhaps that’s just because it is the last decade I have been most aware of. People have children, even stars. To discredit these women’s desire to be mothers by saying they “want their own little replicas”, I find quite rude. So if a woman becomes a successful actress or musician she is supposed to lose all desire to have children? And if they do have children it is out of a desire to have a human accessory not because of the same desire that “ordinary” women have children for?

     I also do not understand why a mother cannot practice attachment parenting while having other people involved in her child’s life. I understand not everyone have friends or loved ones close by, that is not their fault. I practice attachment parenting (minus cloth diapering, but really how much does what’s on their butt have to do with how they are being raised?) but Sam’s grandmothers, grandfather, aunt and a slew of non-blood family members are involved in his life. I attachment parent within my village raising my child, and you can too! ;)

     I find it quite sad that she feels the “expectations” of attachment parenting victimize women. It saddens me that anyone would think any aspect of motherhood is victimizing; I find motherhood to be invigorating.  But I also feel this to be nothing new, there has long been a stigma on stay-at-home moms. I will never understand why people do not realize not everyone feels the way they do. Just because you would rather work and feel being home raising your children is entrapment doesn’t mean all women feel that way.

     The opinion that women who chose to raise their children following the ideals of attachment parenting are doing so for the intent of molding perfect children is foolish. I can only speak for myself but I am not raising my son the way I am in hopes of it making him perfect. Even though I do believe it benefits him to raise him as I do, I am also doing it for me. I do what I do not because I am thinking “this will make him a perfect person” but because I am thinking “this is what feels right”.   She also seems to assume that because I practice attachment parenting with my infant, I will smother my child as he grows resulting in his ability to solve problems himself being impaired. I find this to be insulting and ridiculous. Baby wearing, breastfeeding and co sleeping do not evolve to total dependence on the mother as an adult.

      I think the only correct thing she says in this article is that “We need someone to say: Do the best you can. There are no rules.”  She needs to remember this while writing so harshly on the way others chose to parent. 

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

the love for a newborn Sam...

A couple times i had written my thoughts/feelings shortly after having Sam, here they are:

      Being a mother creates some of the most amazing feelings i have ever felt. The joy i feel in my heart when the little lips of his form a smile is unmeasurable. I do not even mind the limited amount of sleep i receive, when previously i longed for every minute. now i regret a moment my senses are not attuned to him. Having Samuel has completed me, he has completed my family. Having Samuel and Kevin has given me everything i could ever want. I feel so much love, its as if my heart should explode.

      I have never in my life felt so sure about a choice i have made. Having Samuel was the most right choice i have ever made. I feel as if the path of my life has led to where it was meant to be. I was meant to be Samuel's mother. I feel such a peace when i look at his beautiful face. My love for him is as boundless as space and grows as the universe. I feel so blessed to have him, he is the most wonderful give i have ever been given. I thank the powers that be for giving me such a healthy, calm natured, beautiful son.

a glimpse back in time...

Some of my favorite pictures from Sam's birth to current:

Fresh out of the oven.
Still in the Hospital.
Four days old.
One week and two days old.
Kevin and Sam.
Sam and i.
Three weeks and five days old.
Sam and i.
Kevin and Sam.
Four weeks and two days old.
Vest made by the amazing Nicole.
Ten weeks and two days old.
Eleven weeks old.

My love/hate relationship with music...

Last night I found myself feeling quite lonely and bitter. These feelings of loneliness and bitterness stemmed from the absence of Kevin due to band practice. It wasn’t just the practice which had me feeling this way, it was the idea of future shows. Shows I would most likely not be attending.  You see, most bars are 18+ and even when they are not bringing an infant is frowned upon.  So even though I could go, I couldn’t bring Sam and I am just not ready to leave him… not even once a week.

Then on top of these feelings of loneliness and bitterness the feeling of selfishness settles in.  Kevin has always been involved in music. I know how important it is to him. I know that the feeling he feels on stage can only be achieved there, and I really don’t want to take it away from him. I don’t want to be one of those women who tell their partner “it’s the band or it’s me (us)”. Even if I knew 100% he would chose me (us), I would want him to make that choice on his own…and really, the selfless part of me doesn’t want him to Have to make that choice. He shouldn’t Have to make that choice. But then selfish Sara speaks up and says “We only have so much time together and time he could be spending with you and Sam, he’s spending at practice or in bars.” Ugh! Just shut up selfish Sara!

 It was while watching/listening to him play guitar and sing that I first started to develop feelings for him. I Love the musician inside him. I have always loved music, especially vocals. Kevin is honestly quite talented, he has a beautiful voice (when he chooses to actually sing, not just scream).  I love the idea of Kevin teaching Sam how to play guitar. When I imagine the future I imagine my son in band rather than in sports. (Although it goes without saying if Sam shows an interest in sports I will support him.)

 I love that Kevin is musical. I love that he gets on stage and feels something I can hardly imagine, and I want him to feel that. I love that if my son shows an interest in music (which I strongly hope he will) his father will be able to teach him about it. But I hate that music takes Kevin away from Sam and i. I hate that some of the precious time we have is spent apart due to the music. And I hate that I have to choose between being in the same space as my Son and watching my Love on stage. 

Kevin, in Kill Whitey.