Tag-Archive for » motherhood «

It’s a weighty issue

Okay, mothers. I’m a little miffed at you.

You and your secrets. Oh yeah, you tried to help me by telling me a few secrets here and there, things you swore no one talked about. The underbelly of motherhood. Things to watch for, things to help me keep my sanity.

But not one of you mentioned this. And I think I’m holding just a little bit of a grudge.

I heard that my body would change after childbirth. Of course it does! Things rearrange, get a little softer, a little saggier.

But not one of you told me how differently I would gain weight after having the Boobah. Are you feeling guilty yet? Well, doggone it, you should!

First, I had no idea it would be so freakin’ easy to gain weight. I lost weight pretty rapidly after the baby was born, and even kept it off for a while. But gradually, insidiously, it snuck back. All of it. And then some. I weigh as much as I did when I was 9 months pregnant. Heck, I probably look pregnant.

I am not happy about this.

Yet this is the worst part for me. It’s where I gain weight. I used to gain it low, in my abdomen. Now, it’s my abdomen, lower, higher, on the sides, on my back. THIS IS NOT FAIR. The weight is uncomfortable. It throws me off kilter. Makes me tired. Cranky. Unattractive.

Part of it is my activity level. And eating habits. I know that. But it is so much harder to motivate myself when I’m so stinking tired all of the time! Oh, and I hate to run. Hate it. I’m happy for you if you like it. It’s just not my thing. Not my bag, baby.

Walking, though, I can handle. So I am. I walked for 50 minutes today, and I’m going to try to do at least half that as often as possible. Because my back can’t handle the extra weight. My knees. And my eyes, when I look in the mirror.

And you moms are on notice. If there’s anything else you’ve neglected to share, you better spill now. Because this weight makes me cranky, too. And you won’t like me when I’m cranky.

Used and abused

Things my child has hit me with recently and the injuries I sustained:

Blocks
He loves to pound on everything, and unfortunately my face is sometimes a little too close. Results: several fat lips.

Sippy cups
I get hit with these at least once a day. Most of the time I manage to dodge, or at least keep my glasses from getting broken. My cheek has been bruised more times than I can count.

Feet
My son LOVES to kick when he’s lying on his back. Especially during diaper changes. Results: many pummelings in my stomach. And occasionally my legs. I think he left a bruise on my thigh. This kid is STRONG. I don’t mind it so much when we’re lying down and he does that to my back. I just need to teach him when it’s okay. ;)

His head
This is the most damaging weapon. He bruised my nose this morning and I still have a headache from that. He cracked the side of my head with the back of his a few days ago and my ear is still sore where it got crushed between his head and my glasses. Fat lips galore. Many head bruises. And he’s only recently started to stiffen up and throw himself backwards. Hence the rapid increase of head injuries. For me. Doesn’t seem to bother him much at all.

I think my son may be trying to kill or maim me. How much do you think his father paid him?

Crying game

Motherhood changes you. It shifts something in your core, tinges how you look at things. I never realized the deep fundamental difference it would make down to my soul.

I sat here, at my desk tonight, sobbing unexpectedly. A short scene on TV reduced me to tears in a brief 30 seconds. Even now, just the memory brings tears to my eyes.

I am not the person I once was. I could watch movies and TV shows without a second thought. Oh sure, things sometimes scared me or disturbed me. But I could distract myself (oooh, something shiny!) and move on.

Not any more.

I was watching Leverage on TNT. It’s new to us, but I’m really beginning to like it. There was a scene in which one of the main characters talked about his son, who died when a treatment was denied. Just them talking about it wasn’t too bad.

But when they flashed to the scene where he remembered his son dying, showed him running into the room to hold his son in his arms after the heart monitors flatlined? I broke down. I sobbed that ugly way when you’re so upset you can hardly breathe, your head pounding from the intensity of it.

Because I think of parents who have lost their children too soon, and then I get a little scared, worrying about my boobah. Wondering how anyone gets through something like that. And not wanting to ever, ever find out.

I’ve always been a little emotional. I cry at movies, poignant scenes, even those darn tissue commercials that were on for a while.

But this? Is something deeper. Something that strikes my core. I can’t bear to watch a child in danger, hurt, or killed. I can’t even read about it. I read Deep End of the Ocean several years ago. I doubt I could handle it now.

Does it ever get easier? This paralyzing fear? This crippling emotion that grips your head and your heart? Is there a way to get through motherhood intact? I don’t know.

In the motherhood

baby and meBefore the Wee One, my best friend used to tell me how much being a mom changes you. I only half believed her because I was already a mom. Sort of. That’s not to say step-moms are not moms. They are. It’s just different.

But then I had my own kid and my heart opened even further. I wish I had known how to open it like this sooner. Don’t misunderstand – I love my step-daughter. She is my kid as far as I’m concerned. But I wish I’d been more patient, more understanding. Because I feel more patient, calmer, and maybe just a tiny bit wiser. And I wish she’d gotten some of the benefit from this.

Even when I’m having a bad day, stressed to the core, I look at that little boy and things get better. I stop, and I smile at him to make sure he doesn’t just see a frowning mama all the time. I want him to remember joy from his childhood. A sense of well-being. Security.

Being a mom has really, truly changed me. I knew I had a capacity for love, but I didn’t know how deep it was. I’ve always felt a bit selfish. But there’s no getting by with that now. My needs are minor compared to someone who depends on me for their very existence. Oh, I still try to fit in taking care of myself when I can, but most of his needs take precedence. They just do. I’m the one that has to learn balance, not him.

My heart feels bigger (as do my hips, but that’s a story for another time). I’m learning not to sweat the small stuff, like the river of poop that landed in my lap today when the kid had a diaper blowout (around his leg – how does that happen?). I am finally able to stop and ask myself “Will this matter tomorrow? Next week?” And the little things rarely will.

Being a mom is wonderful, amazing, and hard as can be. I still frequently feel frazzled, like I’m not getting anything done. Or at least, not enough. J has been incredibly helpful in that regard. And understanding.

So my friend was right. Motherhood has changed me. And I’m pretty sure it’s for the better.