motion

I’ve started thinking about looking for apartments. For me. Without J.

I surfed craigslist some last night, found some ones that look promising, called them to see if I could go look at them. I had forgotten how hard it is to get an apartment in Cambridge.

This isn’t some big declaration like I’m moving out! No. It’s more than I simply want to state that I’m thinking about it. I’m tossing it around. I’m crunching some numbers and examining some feelings and seeing what there is to see. When there’s something big to announce, I’ll let you all know.

Until then, at least I feel like I’m moving in a direction.

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babies

baby 057

These days I feel at my saddest when I think about babies.

For me, being pregnant sucked … I was so sick for the first 4.5 months and then I was one big bundle of heartburn after that.  During the course of my pregnancy J cheated on me, we got married, and then moved to another state.  He was drunk all the time and after years of talking about how psyched he was to become a father, he didn’t have any interest in the pregnancy.  He never even read the damn baby books I got him.

And now that Darwin’s here J’s better, but it took a good long while.  For the first seven months of Darwin’s life J was drunk and not present at all.  I spent all my time being terrified and horrified and sad beyond belief.  It’s not just that I was suffering from post-partum depression, which I definitely was.  It’s that I believed the person I chose to have a baby with would actually be available to me, would be interested in being a parent, and would take the entire thing seriously.  I wanted Darwin’s existence to be the catalyst for the change that I always wanted to see in J.

As it ended up, it took more than just Darwin’s existence.  It took me telling J that he either had to stop drinking or move out.  And then it took a whole bunch of time and fights and trial and error.  Now, at least, J is present, and starting to turn into a father.  He and I disagree quite drastically on how a lot of this should be done, and he still hasn’t read a single fucking book, but he’s at least available in the fathering realm.

But I am not even vaguely over what happened during the pregnancy and the first seven months of Darwin’s life.  Most of the time I don’t even let myself think about it, because I believe that dwelling on it would simply mean the end of any love or good feelings that I have for J.  Nobody should ever have to deal with what I had to deal with, and the fact that he’s the one who put me through it makes me furious.  Of course, I’m also furious with myself for not doing anything about it.

Anyway.  Long story short, I am not going to have another child with this man.  I don’t trust him enough to do that.  I should have known enough not to trust him in the first place, but I was stupid.  It ain’t going to happen again.

But oh my lord, do I want another child.  I want to experience pregnancy and labor and infancy under good circumstances.  I want to know what it feels like to just be able to enjoy it all, without constantly being so sad that I can barely breathe.  I want to know what it’s like to go through the whole process WITH someone, instead of on my own.  I keep thinking about how different it all could have been if I’d had someone who was there, who was interested, who was supportive.  If I’d had someone to encourage me to go to yoga and eat well and walk a mile everyday.

And now so many of my friends are pregnant or trying to get pregnant or, in the case of A, in labor even as we speak!  The sin I am always the most guilty of is envy and right now is no exception.  I am jealous of everyone else who is starting out on this journey under good circumstances, with support and love and a partner who’s there for them.  I can’t help it … it just makes my chest ache with the wish that I was them.

codependence

Codependency is a pattern of detrimental, behavioral interactions within a dysfunctional relationship or relationships with a partner, family or friends. A codependent person is one who has let another person’s behavior affect him or her, and who is obsessed with controlling that person’s behavior. Codependency advocates claim that a codependent may feel shame about, or try to change, his or her most private thoughts and feelings if they conflict with those of another person. It involves low-self esteem, seeking for others approval, not having own boundaries with their own thought, feelings and behavior.

Symptoms of codependence may include controlling behavior, distrust, perfectionism, avoidance of feelings, problems with intimacy, excessive caretaking, hypervigilance, or physical illness related to stress. Codependence is often accompanied by clinical depression, as the codependent person succumbs to feelings of frustration or sadness over his or her inability to improve the situation.

  • tendency to place the needs and wants of others first and to the exclusion of acknowledging one’s own
  • continued investment of self-esteem in the ability to control both oneself and others
  • anxiety and boundary distortions relating to intimacy and separation
  • difficulty expressing feelings
  • excessive worry how others may respond to one’s feelings
  • undue fear of being hurt and/or rejected by others
  • self-esteem dependent on approval by others
  • tendency to ignore own values and attempt to adhere to the values of others

Anybody have any thoughts on this?  Is this going to be a common theme in ALL my relationships or just this one?  If I was with someone who wasn’t an alcoholic would it be different?  Is it too late to change these patterns in the relationship now?  Is it something I can actually change about myself?  Any thoughts on how to?

sigh

I’ve been going through a period of feeling petrified that I’m not doing a good enough job. For god’s sake, people, I have a person’s life in my hands! I know he’s smart, but what if I’m not doing everything I can to make him be the best person he could be? He’s this perfect little bundle of potential right now and my job is to encourage his enthusiasm and bring him joy and try to help him be a well-rounded wonderful human being. But what if I’m not doing enough? What if I’m simply resting on the laurels of who he already is?

All I ever wanted to be, my entire life, was a mother. And I spent all my time thinking that once motherhood showed up, I’d be fulfilled forever. But, as it turns out, that wasn’t true. I love my son more than anything and I love my role as his mother, but that isn’t ALL I want for myself. I am still very much interested in being a well-rounded individual. I want a life for myself as well as my son.

I guess I’m afraid that after a lifetime of thinking that all I needed/wanted was motherhood, and finding out how untrue that was … what if I do a bad job? What if it isn’t just that I’m not as fulfilled as I want to be, but instead that I’m actively not good at it?

Or could it just be that right now I’m dealing with the most insanely two year-old person on the face of the planet and I’m just exhausted of all the temper tantrums and limit-pushing that’s been going on?

Sometimes this life I’ve set out for myself seems too overwhelming to deal with. Sigh.