I had a funky day a few days back. My emotions were low, and I felt like crying for the first part of the day. And I always have to figure out, why? I have learned that in the years since my bout with postpartum depression, that I have not wanted to feel sadness anymore, a crazy idea but you know, it's what happened. I think I get scared when I feel the need to cry. I am so so utterly terrified to go back into that deep dark pit again that I have kept sadness or any negative emotion, bottled up when I felt it. And then I ate it. There has been something "eating me up" for the last few years. There was a movie, Four Christmases
recently with Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughan and there was a scene of them looking at a picture of her from when she was younger and heavyset. She says, "I ate my feelings" and he says, "She must have had a lot of bad feelings" Really funny and a really good laugh. This scene spoke to me even though it shouldn't have as it was a crass line making fun of heavy people but I could so relate to that line as I've had a lot of bad feelings. And I also really like Reese Witherspoon!
I did have some reason to feel discombobulated last week. Summer is approaching and as a stay at home mom, my schedule is about to be ripped wide apart. Some moms look forward to summer with fervor. Not I. We will have a lot of time to fill except for a few hours here and there with camp and the like. Having this much time with my children has given me great anxiety in the past, as it would harken back to my motherload of anxiety time, that time I will now refer to as PPD. I know it's kinda crazy that I am a stay at home mom and the idea of spending all my time with my children sets me off into a panic. But I've accepted that I'm not a kid person, and a room full of kids wears me out and it only takes minutes, not hours. And taking care of these two young lives is mentally and physically exhausting. The constant abundance of energy, the noise, the demandingness of young children, it just gets to me along with the fact that I never am able to finish anything. And here is the disclaimer, I am very appreciative of the fact that I am able to be at home with them, I love them dearly but I still have feelings that I desire to stay sane. I am bound and determined though to keep my sanity and learn to handle all the togetherness, bit by bit (and in the meantime create two well adjusted, thriving children that I only want the best for, no pressure there)
Summer is here. There is a lot of free time to fill. I think the older my children get the easier I will be able to handle it. The problems will get bigger but I think what zaps me is the amount of physical and mental care that it takes to maintain from birth to around age 5ish. At least that is what some of my friends have said. What put me over the edge last week was that we learned my husband's schedule was going to change for the worse. He will now be on call every third weekend of the year, instead of fourth as it has been for the last nine years we have been in Baton Rouge. And this means more call during the week and longer work days as well. Second disclaimer, I am grateful he has a job in this economy. It's just a significant lifestyle change and I had to feel funky for a little while. I felt sad about it and I have moved on now. I realize I have to own the feelings, don't bottle them up, don't eat them, let them out and then figure out how to deal with it constructively.
These are my plans. I'm going to make it to yoga, somehow once a week. I'm going to park them each in front of a tv so that I can get on the treadmill for 30 minutes more days than not during the week or better yet, drag them to the YMCA and make them go to the nursery. We will get out of the house every day even if it is on small errands as I have learned that I begin to lose it without any outside world stimulation. I'm going to plan girls nights out and go through the hassle of finding a babysitter and coordinating friends' schedules. I'm going to keep blogging and letting my feelings out. I'm going to devote blocks of time for my children and play with them in their activities so that when I need time to myself, I will not feel guilty to turn them away. Those are my plans, I will let you know how it goes.