Sometimes I will see a pregnant woman walking down the street and it takes me right back to those days. Those secret, silent conversations I had with my little partner who I carried around in my belly. The plotting and planning what our life would look like, be like, feel like. The moments of excited uncertainty. All the fun decisions to be made – names, clothes, homes, ways. How sure I was about how I would parent with ease and be the fun mom baking chocolate cakes at all hours. I can laugh kindly at myself now but I do like to relive those memories every once in a while. The moments I had back then of feeling so sure have been some of the most comforting in my whole life. It’s a lot to coast on and you can for quite a while.
Back then I really thought giving birth would be the hard part. That if I could just get through that hard part I would do just fine. I guess there is some truth to that. But, for me, birth was not the hard part. Finding my footing as a parent in a world that has sometimes wanted to knock me down has been the hard part. There have been some seriously hard days as my child and I have gotten to know each other over the last (almost three!) years. Just when I think I’ve got it all solved – another developmental stage appears. So we begin again together – figuring out our way.
It’s been quite a cold winter so far. It’s kept us inside a little more than usual. Well, that and catching a few bugs right in a row has done us in! I don’t know about you, but just about the worst thing for us is being stuck inside. I learned pretty early on, right around the time my baby could crawl, that being outside for most of the day would be our classroom, our safe and inspired place and quite literally: our saving grace. These past few illnesses right in a row combined with being inside so much have really left me feeling worn down and stressed at times. And has left the two of us truly at odds at times – more than ever before. I think I’ve gotten through just barely on the fumes of random bouts of laughter, dance parties, huge stacks of library books, some Tension Tamer tea and short jaunts outdoors to nearby gardens until we are so cold we can’t stand it anymore and return to the great indoors to begin it all again.
How about you? Does parenthood ever wear you down? Do you escape to your memories? Or to a nice hot bath at the end of the day?!