Most of the time I come off as a blunt, sarcastic, don’t-care-what-you-think person. The truth is, though, I can be pretty thin skinned and sensitive. I can take everything to heart. I’m extra hard on myself. I worry needlessly about what others think. Little things start to become big things and I obsess over little details or mistakes. I can feel like I’ve failed at all the things. Like it or not, this has been a part of who I am for many years, and I didn’t always deal with it well because I didn’t have a healthy coping mechanism. I have toughened up over the years and can usually catch myself before any major spiraling happens, but I spent much of high school and college depressed. Then one day (very long story short), feeling completely overwhelmed with stress and emotion, I ran out of my dorm. I ran down the street until I felt like I could not breathe. I made it probably a quarter of a mile before my lungs felt like they might explode, but the point was I didn’t feel as overwhelmed anymore. I had an outlet.
Fertile or infertile, motherhood is a challenge. My emotions have been a little up and down the last few weeks. The babies are going through a lot of developmental changes right now. We’ve hardly followed a schedule for the last 2-3 weeks. They are waking sometimes several times a night (one of the main signs of these Wonder Weeks leaps is less sleep). They are crankier. Its silly, but difficult not to sometimes take the extra crying as a sign I am not doing something right. I’m not sure how to handle all of these new things and still make sure they are fed, happy and well rested. I question working because of its impact on “the schedule”. I obsess over feeding times, nap times, bed times and wake times. Sometimes so much so that I am missing the babies, and by that I mean their giggles, babbles and rolls. Their faces as they eat bananas for the first time. The smile they give me when I go in the room to wake them up. I’m realizing that one day I’m going to wake up and realize that I’ve missed it all. I swore up and down that I would appreciate these miracles I have been given, and while I realize that you simply cannot appreciate EVERY moment, I also realize I am missing too much over these obsessions.
Yesterday I went for my first long run post super lame toe injury. Running has this way of taking my brain out of its obsessions and back more into reality. As the miles add up the fog clears, the tendency to react in raw emotion lessens, and I can really think logically through the issues. The truth is I personally believe schedules are important, but realistically, what schedule is the EXACT same day to day? Within these schedules we need a certain amount of flexibility – something I have been really lacking recently. And not just in reference to the babies and schedules.
I’d been looking forward to this run all week. I didn’t initially take it well when it was postponed one day, and then two. When I made it out the door, I felt like I was ready to take it on full force. Then, I got a stomach cramp. A stomach cramp that lasted 2.5 miles. For a moment it sucked the excitement of the run out of me but I instinctually pushed through knowing it wasn’t going to last forever. Low and behold, it didn’t. I took it easy, took short breaks when needed. I was able to pick up speed for the second half, and finished feeling triumphant. I hardly remembered the cramp happened at all.
I know there will continue to be tough times and constant changes in schedulesDeep down, I also know they won’t last forever and it won’t be the end of the world. Sometimes, though, I really need that reminder.
And when I do, I’ll go for a run.
November 5, 2013 at 5:45 pm
What a great way to refocus! I’d like to say that it gets easier and you wake up one day and all of the doubts have disappeared; however, that’s not the case! But, a schedule is good, the structure and routine is important – and it’s just as important to remember that schedules should be flexible. The fact that you are worried is a good thing! You got this!
November 7, 2013 at 4:39 pm
I think I ust got stuck in the schedule mindset to the point that I forget that even though I’m a schedule person, even mine isnt the exact same every day.
November 5, 2013 at 6:32 pm
Way to put things into perspective. I’m not a parent yet, but I feel like this can be used as a metaphor for so many other things and stages in our lives.
November 5, 2013 at 6:38 pm
It really can. I could have used it for just about anything.
November 7, 2013 at 3:17 pm
Whenever I wonder if Emma should be on more of a routine, I remind myself that I don’t do the same thing every day, or always feel the same, so why would she be any different? We follow a general guideline, but there’s a lot of flexibility and room for adjustment.
November 7, 2013 at 4:38 pm
Yeah I think as time goes on I think more and more like that. I mean I eat lunch around the game general time, but it isn’t the EXACT same every day. Same with bedtime etc. Schedules are important for babies I think, but there has to allow some for flexibility too, and I just wasn’t in the right mindset.