Tuesday, September 30, 2014
On difficult phases of motherhood
I was trying to rally up energy to make dinner after a draining day and went to put on some music. Usually my go-to mood-lifter is a playlist that has poppy music with female vocals. But my soul was a bit thirstier than that. I wondered if I could find my old playlist that I made for being in labor with Dinosaur, then updated with a few more songs for Rhinoceros's birth. I made the playlist to listen to in labor, and I did, but then I continued listening to them during the newborn days. For Dinosaur, neither of us knew how to breastfeed, and I was calling the lactation consultant making and canceling appointments a few times in a row. I spent most of my day sitting in the glider in our room, trying to wake him or reposition him or something to make this all work better. My life felt like it was falling apart, and I felt lost. I was so tired, yet hormones or anxiety or a combination kept me from sleeping, so when I went to take a nap that wouldn't happen, instead I would lie down and listen to these songs.
I feel almost as lost with Cricket and the state of our family. I imagined difficulties fostering, but I didn't imagine them exactly like this. When I am with the kids, I am on alert constantly. I can't assume that since they're playing fine this minute that it will be fine if I walk away. Even when I am watching, somehow someone is getting hurt and all parties are looking at me like I should have been able to stop it, and I agree with them. And sometimes there's no calming Cricket's sad, awful storm, and we all look at each other with pained eyes as we wait it out. It wears me down, and I feel lost from my usual self.
I grapple for bits of control. My previous post was all about what I'm trying. Carrying out plans helps me refocus. But at the end of the day, when I'm wondering what happened to the mother I thought I was, these songs are helping me remember that I did not stay lost. I became the mother I am today because of those awful days that I cried, staring at my newborn baby, wondering how on earth I could go on like this. And now I am becoming a different kind of mother, with God's help the mother that Cricket needs, at least in some ways. And from there I can be a mother to more and more. And from here I can be a mother who depends more on God, like I should, because I'm too desperate to have any other choice.