March 9th, 2011 | 2 Comments »

It’s another one of those days where I have everything in the world to joy and rejoice over, yet I find myself short of breath, anxious, and wanting to find a place to curl up and escape from who knows what.

meet the new boss, same as the old boss

I wish I could put my finger on it.  I don’t like it.  I actually stole away from my kids for a moment, under the pretense of changing into my jammies, and curled up in fetal position, in the dark, on my bed.  Two minutes, maybe three.  A brief, silent explosion of tears.

The only thing I can think of is an accumulation of things observed in my periphery.  Recognizing an estranged friend of a loved one and waving a greeting.  Relief that my little guy is finally eating again, after nearly a week of intestinal distress, and with that, possibly the realization of pent up anxiety and helplessness over his condition.  Knowing there is anguish consuming people I love, and not being able to do anything about it.  Feeling the ripples caused by my movements in and out of the lives of people around me.  Breaching comfort zones.  Guilt over not calling my dad to wish him a happy birthday.  I sent him a Ben Franklin, but I just couldn’t bring myself to call him.  Frustration with myself for allowing the simple business of life and living to affect me so viscerally and physically.

Fear, perhaps?  Fear that someone or everyone will notice that I’m not, after all, perfect.  Me, the girl with the golden life, unable to meet my own expectations.

Oh, who knows.  I’ll go to sleep tonight, and wake up to a brand new day with a smile on my face and a song in my heart, and all of this will be a thing of the past.  I will wonder how I could possibly ever fall into such a funk.  I will be perplexed, unable to understand it, so I will shake my head and dismiss it.  I might even tell myself I won’t let it happen again, because it makes no sense and there’s just no reason for it.  I might even believe it.

Until the next time.

April 28th, 2010 | 3 Comments »

I have about ten drafts hanging out around here.  Some go back a few years, even.  This one I started last November, but it mostly still applies.  It seems that my emotional state tends to be somewhat of a broken record, anyway.  So here goes.

I wish I had somebody to talk to right now, but since I’m a blubbering fool, I wouldn’t be able to speak coherently anyway. I do have someone to talk to, several, in fact, and I’m truly grateful — yet I don’t always feel like I’m truly understood.  It would be nice to be understood.


It can be a serious character flaw, to want to please one and all.  It would behoove me to grow a backbone.  It could come in handy both in my professional life and my personal life.  Instead of standing tall, puffing out my chest, and deflecting the onslaught with wisdom and grace, I take it, and take it, and keep on taking it.  But later, I have to pay the piper.  It all goes inside and churns away at me so that I find myself short of breath.

I wish I could be like Superman.  The way he soars up, up, and away, closer to the sun, folds his arms across his chest, closes his eyes, and rests and recharges.  Then he’s all strong and rejuvenated, and ready to blaze into action.  Me, I hear the cacophony of demands, wails, criticisms, insinuations, whines, expectations, opinions and complaints, but rather than filter through it and find the nuggets of goodness, I feel as though I’ve got kryptonite shrapnel embedded all through me, and I’m incapacitated so that all I can do is curl into fetal position while I’m kicked around, hoping for it to end, searching my mind and my will for some fragment of strength to hold onto and pull myself up, up, out and away from this mess.

Is it very helpful to be told I should be stronger?  Not much.

I commented to some of my work friends that I should develop a shell to shut these things out, but they almost all said that if I did, it should be selective to only those necessary.   In a way, that’s a heartening thing to hear.  It perhaps supports that there is value and merit in the kindness and softness that exposes my vulnerabilities.


What’s in a name?  I’m wanting to change my name.  I didn’t have it changed in the divorce, because I didn’t have any hard feelings toward Gadget at the time, apart from the simple fact that the marriage absolutely had to end.  Mainly, the kids have the same name, so I thought it would be less confusing as we go through life to have the same name.

However.  As time goes by,  and shades of character unveil, I find myself wanting to remove all traces, insomuch as is possible.

I could take back my maiden name, but I hesitate to do that.  I think that I associate it with an identity of who I used to be, rather than who I am.  That was someone from a previous life.  Someone who wasn’t as sure of herself as I’d wished her to be.

It raises the question, ‘Who am I?’  Which prompts the response, ‘24601’.  What if I changed my name to Valjean?

Sueeeus Maximus Valjean.

I kind of like it.  People will think I’m whacked.  Which, maybe I am.  My dead brother would totally get it, though.  He’d dig it.


BB has told me several times lately that he wants me to become a vampire so that I “don’t never die”.  It troubles me somewhat that my mortal demise is so prevalent in his thoughts.


I do need to be stronger.  I get that.  I just don’t want to be told.  It’s another one of those character flaws.  I’m pretty sure that if I could get rested, I might just be stronger.  It’s so elusive, though, is rest.  Meanwhile, the children call.  I hear the youngest crying.

January 8th, 2009 | 2 Comments »

Finding the bright side

I really like being at the office, in the flesh.  I like seeing the people, walking down the hallways exchanging hellos, sitting at my desk and hearing the buzz around me.  It’s a boost.

I like that LB is such a laid back little boy.  He’s happy to see me when we get home, and he doesn’t appear to hold anything against being left with a caregiver all day.  I hold him and he stands on his strong little legs and gives me that, -I’m the coolest thing ever- look.  He is just so pleased with himself and his new discovery that he can use his legs for more than kicking, and it’s literally written all over his face.  I love that.  LOVE IT.

I like that, since LB is an every other day pooper, and generally a daytime pooper, I have very few poopy diapers to contend with.  Nice!

Daycare is frighteningly expensive, and I’m still getting used to the thought of it, but I can afford it, so I’m grateful.  The part about having to pay for it whether or not we actually go still bothers me, but I have to remember that our caregiver’s living depends on contracted service, and it’s not her fault if the roads are flooded or frozen or otherwise impassable.  Also, if we didn’t contract, then we wouldn’t be guaranteed placement, and that could be far worse.

Even if all this adjustment makes me dry up (the supply has plummeted this week, which in itself freaks me out which then causes it to dwindle further; it’s a horrible, vicious cycle -I was three ounces short in just one pumping session, this morning, which is SUBSTANTIAL), it won’t be the end of the world to have to switch to formula, and I can still be grateful that my baby has gotten over 4 months of breast milk and all its benefits.  I still hope I can recover (which is why I’m spending all this time trying to think of the bright side of things and get my head into a better place).

The yin

(Why is it that the negative and dark yin is the feminine attribute, whereas the positive and light yang is the masculine?)

The other morning while I was getting everything ready (even though I’d gotten as much ready the previous night as possible, there is still a lot to do in a morning before getting out the door), BB kept asking, -Mommy, why are you running so fast everywhere?-

I tried a new tactic of feeding LB as much as possible just before I went to bed, to try and hold him through the night.  He would only take 5 ounces, and by morning there was a smell to the remaining 2-3 ounces, so I had to dump it.  I can’t say how wrenching it is to have to dump that substance for which I work so hard and sacrifice so much!  Maybe it was still okay, but normally I can barely detect only the slightest sweet scent, and I’d rather not take any chances.

Part of me wouldn’t be too heartbroken to wean at this point, but the better part of me is concerned about the hormonal effects and the appetite effects.  I’m a bit leery of sending myself into a psychological tailspin by rocking the hormonal boat, since I can feel myself teetering as is.  And as far as appetite goes, I’d hate to find myself sustaining a large appetite without having my body work some of it off in the milk factory.  I’ve put on some belly fat since having LB, and am somewhat afraid of exacerbating the condition.  Okay, terrified.

There is also a part of me that wonders if this stubborn and neurotic obsession with lactation is hurting my developing relationship with my child.  If I weren’t obsessing so much, would I be snuggling with him more?

In need of a paradigm shift

Paradigm in itself is a good word, but it’s been so abused in corporate circles that it is forever tarnished. Tarnished or not, I am in need of a paradigm shift.

It’s hardly the norm any more for women to be (just the) homemakers and men to be (just the) breadwinners, yet somehow it’s been etched in my mind that this is the ideal, the way it’s supposed to be (even with those commercials in the 70s where the woman, hear her roar, sings -I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in the pan…Because I’m a woman, W-O-M-A-N…-)   And because of this, I have a tendency to resent the fact that I am the main breadwinner, when I should celebrate that there has been no glass ceiling for me.  I envy those women who get to be SAHMs in this day and age, or, gasp, SAHWs, yet at the same time I feel guilty that I am out in the paid work force eking out a living, as though I should give it up and buck it up and just find a way to live with the one (lesser) income, because I’m a mother and should be home with my children.  I tend to fall into the thought pattern that if I weren’t the main breadwinner, maybe I’d have more of a choice to be a SAHM.  Hence the resentment.  Poor Gadget.  He’s good at what he does, and he’d be a terrible SAHD.  Truly, the essence of this narcissistic spiral is that deep down I just want to be a princess, dammit, and spend my time leisurely kissing the children (while the nanny does the work), playing the spinet, and sipping tea from the finest translucent porcelain while my dear husband dotes on me and lavishes me with lovely gowns and jewels.

Then, because I happen to like my work, I feel even guiltier, because when it comes down to it, I get cabin fever when trapped home all day, and crave exposure with more people.  So I can’t win for losing, what with the tangled mess that is my mind.

I need to make peace with the fact of being a career woman.  I need to find a way to convince myself that it doesn’t make me less of a mother.

It may be PPD trying to get its grip on me.  I suppose, if I’d read through the convoluted diatribe I’ve just written, I’d concede that it HAS taken root, and just bust out my Zoloft, for God’s sake.