I have a love hate relationship with Facebook. I love it because I have connections with childhood friends that otherwise I would not. I have found tons of new friends and support through various mommy groups. I have reconnected with family. I get to see babies! Who doesn’t love the babies! I already feel that I have an “in” to make new friends in Virginia (we just moved) because of the mom pages. I love the swap pages and have probably bought way more useless items than I need.
Why I hate it. I find myself sometimes thinking in Facebook statuses, I spend way more time than I want to on it. (And cringe to admit it)I get sucked into worrying about things that are not problems in my life at all. I feel that I must read certain articles “just in case” and all it does is add to my fear with my child. Facebook causes me to sometimes to feel like I hate people based on their status and phony pictures. I also get super judgy (yes that is a word at this moment). It’s not real. I don’t say “hello Facebook friends today sucked.” I also sometimes don’t want everyone’s opinion. I truly don’t.
I think in the early days of motherhood Facebook was the place I over analyzed and questioned everything. Sometimes I think I did it just to connect. Motherhood is so scary and lonely at first (another thing never talked about). I felt like I had to have answers, and somehow articles on Facebook become the answer. So easy to get sucked in. I also think the tagging your husband to passively “rip him off via Facebook” is hilarious. Like there is an article that’s titled “Things you never say to a three year old” and tons of people just tag their hubby’s.
Now I actually stop myself when I start to read the articles too much. I also don’t actually “follow” most conversations. It’s so hard. At times I feel as though I would be bored out of my mind breastfeeding without it, and at other times I question if I would be happier if I ditched it. I also fear that I will get lazy and never want to pick up the phone and call people again!
I feel like I’m getting most of my news via Facebook. I often wonder how much of it is bullshit. I know that I’m not the only one that does this. No mater what I do as a mom there is always the latest Facebook article counteracting what I’ve decided to do. There is “SO MUCH PRESSURE”!
I contemplated starting a revolution today and calling it “don’t ask Facebook or Google anything about your parenting.” I wonder how much more confident we would all feel. Yet again though, I’m still on it. I think that is how a lot of people feel, yet they are still on it.
Oh we are a misguided bunch.
Prior to having a baby we did the A-typical newly 30 something year old thing and got a dog. He was our baby. At the time we lived in an apartment. I soon figured out (through various noise complaints) that every time I left he whined, cried and freaked out relentlessly. So I had to take him with me everywhere. This restricted where I could go, and he spent a lot of time in the car. But I loved him so much I was willing to make the sacrifice for 3-4 months until we moved.
While I was pregnant my husband and I discussed where the new baby would sleep. Jacks our dog slept in our bed nightly. Between us, and usually under the covers. I knew without a doubt I would want the baby in our room but we weren’t sure in what fashion. My husband initially was weird about the idea of a baby in the bed. Yes the safety hazards were definitely a concern. We knew without a doubt we could not have Jacks in our bed anymore regardless. So we kicked him out, and let him back. We missed him.
That’s when something clicked in my husband that had already clicked in me. If we are that messed up and attached to our dog sleeping in our bed why in the hell would we put our precious child in a room across the house by themselves. It’s normal to let a dog sleep in your bed, but not a baby. That’s ass backwards.
I’m not saying we jumped immediately to the baby in the bed alone with us, but as close to us as possible in a safe manner. The idea of leaving my child who is still so dependent even at 15 months old for so many things across the house all night still makes me nauseous.
I have always preferred to sleep in the company of others. I’m not saying I don’t like some alone time. But sleeping, even as a small child was scary for me.
I keep reading articles about true crying it out methods. I physically feel ill. I really think most parents are seeking what’s best for their child. I also think a lot of people want what is a quick fix. I don’t think kids work that way.
No instinct in me supports letting my baby truly cry under any circumstance. I don’t mean “fake cry to get something”, I mean really cry. Yes they learn to shut up and quit communicating and may seem to be fine. But are they really fine? How many adults say things like “my parents did fill in the blank” and I turned out alright .
I hesitate to say most are alright off the bat. Sure most people don’t have debilitating issues, but I’m shooting for our daughter to turn out more than just alright. I have made it through life, but that is not without serious baggage.
I’m not blaming, I truly believe most people do the best they can with the information they have at the time. The issue is where are you getting your information, and does it sit right in your gut? I wish doctors were gods. Truly. But again they are human. We all are. I don’t really know what it’s like to be a full time working mom. I’m not saying I think all forms of sleep training are cruel.
I do think some are. The early years mold or set the tone for our interactions with life. I believe how we interact matters. Babies crying to the point of shaking, screaming and puking is totally normal right? If my dog was doing that I’d just ignore him right? Self soothing sounds like a way to do something wrong and try to justify it.
This is temporary. The lack of sleep, crying, dependency. It is temporary. Where do you want the foundation to be? Look I breastfeed still and co sleep. I get sacrifice. But I wouldn’t trade our bond. I want her to know that I will respond to her. I will soothe her, and I will as she is able to communicate and understand, help teach her ways to deal with feelings. When I’m tired, sad or scared putting me in a room to cry by myself does not help me. Connection does, a hug does. Love does.
So I have recently figured out that having a child can be harder on a marriage than anything else. The weird part, is I feel like no one talks about it.
I get it, we just brought a new life into this world. Why would I tell anyone we have argued more in that short time period (say 3 months) than we did in the 8 years prior. It’s embarrassing. Not to mention, what does this mean!? If “people”only knew!
So for me now 7 months into it, and a lot of discussions, tears and late night conversations later I have decided to go public.
Here is the light bulb that went off for me. Besides the obvious (which is not always soooo obvious) after you have a baby; hormones, fears, stress, sensitivity (to name a few), marriage is different!
Neither my husband nor I ever did well with authority. And with all due respect to our parents they truly did the best they could. Yet, there is this weird fear that came up for me in a different way, on a different level, that my husband would all of a sudden turn into the worst parts of the males in my life growing up. I got so scared he would be an alcoholic, abusive, asshole.
Shockingly my husband had the same fear (the fears were different) about me! He was terrified I was going to be a crazy, controlling, illogical, no fun mom.
The weird thing is I felt sooo alone! Like I was the only one struggling. It made me feel so very insecure because now when things aren’t perfect between us it’s not just us that effects.
Gratefully we work it out. We always do, and I get to learn that marriage is messy. We started to accept our new rolls in life, and started to refund each other when there was time. Dating became new and exciting. (The two dates we went on in the first 6 months or so) Marriage is not perfect and calm all the time and that’s okay. What is important is we make up. It’s okay to talk about too. I am glad that I know now it gets better. I also know I needed support. No shame in asking for help.
So here it is, I am “that mom” writing a mommy blog(i kind of want to punch myself). Never did I expect that I would be writing a mommy blog. Nor did I expect to be in an exercise class with babies in the stroller, or to be excited to own a mini-van (or to live in St.Louis, MO or to care about the type of deodorant that I am wearing and if it causes cancer, or to quit smoking……just to name a few). I do not want to lose myself in this cyber world. Honestly, I am rather annoyed and fed up with the blogs, articles, and facebook posts and opinions from and to mommies. I figure if I can’t beat em’ I’ll join em’
Here are the things that I can almost guarantee about my blog;
I will not be grammatically correct.
I will cuss. (because that is what passionate people do) (or cajun’s)
I will inappropriately use comma’s and parenthesis.
I am not writing this to offend anyone.
I will probably get really passionate about things, and then later realize that I am wrong.(I will reserve my right to admit that at any time)
If you choose to read this you will learn some things about me;
I am slightly narcissistic, it is because I really am right a lot (or just cajun).
I am not the tough, cool and collected person that I appear to be to some.
I am actually a big softy. I have a huge heart.
I am a little bit obsessed with analysis
I love being a wife and a mom, like a lot.
My most recent trip has been: Life is short (only like 125 years, not trying to affirm anything to the subconscious), if an opportunity comes along take it. If I want to do something do it. Don’t get caught up in the bullshit that people make important. I spent a long time not fully embracing life because I was too busy in a “career” from 18-32. 60+ hours a week is not embracing life.
This culmination has brought me joy. It started with a facebook post regarding being on your death bed and looking back at what really matters in life. And a book at my husbands work about a man with pancreatic cancer.
If (god forbid) my life ended tomorrow, what are people really going to remember about me? What would I really care about in those final moments?
What matters most to me is simply people and love.
I find myself hanging out with my baby girl and getting worried about what I call “the baby race for intelligence”. I want her to be smart, I would even like to take the credit for it. But the voice in my head “did I read her enough books today?” (not because I wanted to, but because I need to make sure she is the smartest) is not what is most important. What is important, and what I will remember is making her laugh hysterically while I dance and sing like a fool. What I want her to know is things like if I didn’t have to, I would never put her down. What is important is that she knows, feels and hears from me daily how much I love her.
What is not important with my husband is the wet towel he has put on the bed 3 times in the last week. What is not important is that he still has not hung something. What is important at the end of the day. He is almost late to work (at a job he relentlessly busts his ass in) because he is singing and dancing with our daughter. What is important is that he tells her repeatedly how beautiful she is, and how much he loves her. What is important is that he has started calling me sweetie, that he still surprises me, and most important loves me not only as his wife now, but the mother of his child.
I am in the process of weeding out the b.s.
I don’t want to raise a child to be programmed to believe things are important that are not.
The problem, and the solution is the world is very gray.
It is fun to figure it out.