Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Definitions


The other day Nicole and I were talking with some friends, who enquired about mutual friend. The other friend replied “She’s married and has two kids.” And it struck me how often we all use limiting labels like marital status and the total number of exiting occupants of their wombs to describe women. With men, it is always about career: He’s a doctor or he works at Blah or he just got a promotion. Sometimes it seems like we haven’t come so far in the area of Equal Rights as we think we have. Where did all the feminists go? And how do they describe themselves?

And yet, what is my blog all about? Trying to have (and then having) a baby (ies). Motherhood. Children. And my relationship (to a lesser extent, because a girl has to have some privacy, no? ). Do I not have any other interesting things in my life to talk about? Apparently not, at least not at the moment.

However, in my own defense, this whole blog started as an outlet for all of the pent-out frustrations and feelings associated with TTC. There is such an amazing community of women out there who have experienced/are experiencing the same thing, and it was important for me to reach out and feel like a part of that. I wish that I had found this community years ago, before all of the spectacular failures of IVF and IUIs.

But still I yearn for something else to write about.

Meanwhile, back at Casa de los Dos Babies con muchos Fits of Crying, we are experiencing the typical ups and downs. A baby “smiles”: Up. Another night of three hours of sleep: Down. Not having time to eat: Down. Eating ice cream bars while pumping: Up. Having a second ice cream bar just because I feel like it: Up up up.

I am trying so hard to be patient and calm, even in the face of extreme lethargy and sleep deprivation. I know it will get better, and I look forward to that time while also lamenting these days that part of me wishes away. It is just so hard to see things with the right perspective when you feel like you are going to collapse or walk into a wall.

I’m just so very tired.

When people tell you that the frequent bathroom trips at the end of pregnancy are nature’s way of preparing you for sleepless nights with a newborn, let me tell you the truth: NOTHING prepares you for sleepless nights with a newborn. All those trips to the bathroom to empty a quarter-thimble’s worth of pee from my bladder eight times a night in no way gave me a sneak peek at what sleep deprivation is like. And just because I could stay out all night in college doesn’t make this easier either. Because nights with newborns lack the alcohol/cigarette/random recreation drugs/dancing/coffee fuel that sustained me through college. I should have strapped two 10-pound bags of flour to me and practice bounce-walking around the apartment before the babies were born.

I almost laughed when my pediatrician told me that I should work on keeping the babies alert more during the day. Ha. When these babies nap, I am making bottles and pumping and doing dishes and picking up the mess that accumulates so quickly in our home and writing thank you notes and trying to eat/bathe/brush my teeth/dress. I need that nap time to keep my home running just a little bit smooth.

The babies are now on Zanta*c. It is suspected that they are experiencing acid reflux. Though not my fault, I still wonder what I was doing the week that their digestive systems were forming. Maybe I could have done something different? Isn’t it ridiculous? If I weren’t so tired I would laugh at myself.

Pictured above, Maddie with me and without. Is it me or does she look happier when I am not holding her? I still contend that she very much prefers Nicole to me!

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

OMG, you're sooo ahead of me -- I didn't get to put nail polish on till my kid was two :)

As to motherhood and identity, there is a slew of issues around that...it only gets worse. Not a few days pass when my kid comes up in a conversation and it goes like this "oh, so you're married"; "no, not exactly, I have a partner". "Oh, so your kids are from a previous marriage" "no"...awkward silence...

nailgirl said...

love the nails, and hou are doing a great job promise.

Motel Manager said...

For what it's worth, you don't look sleep-deprived. I'm so impressed you have manicured nails!

Maddie is totally adorable...love the smile!

Hang in there...I am sending you good-sleep vibes...

katie said...

I think nature makes mothers "forget" about these early days, and somehow by the time they are 1 year old, you don't remember the sleepless nights and all the crying. Otherwise who would ever get pregnant more then once?!?

K J and the kids said...

Katie is right. Hell, I'm talking about another one :)
I can't believe she is SMILING already. HOW CUTE IS SHE ?
Thanks for the pictures.

I hope the Zantac works.

I have said to myself on a NUMBER of occasions...alcohol/cigarettes/recreational drugs....All of these things might help me get through the day.
Lets try it and see :)

Being a mother IS who I am. Seriously.....I take my job as a mother more serious than I have ANYTHING else. I am ok to be labeled a mother. A wife. A housekeeper. I think these are the MOST important jobs. (for sure the hardest) When I die, I really don't want to say....I'm so glad that I got that promotion. I really don't.
I'm TOTALLY ok with everyone else driving in that direction, but for me....being with my kids....that's RIGHT where I want to be.

calliope said...

soooooooo hope the zantac works.

As for the identity stuff- it's odd, but I WANT that. I almost feel like until I become a Mother or until I become a wife I won't yet fully know what being a woman is all about. And I grapple with that as it seems to maybe go against being a feminist...but I really, most days, just feel like a girl and not so much like a woman.

xo