Lists Help Me Make Sense of My World

I had a draft concerning healthy relationships and my thoughts for this week on those. However, despite the fact that I did a list the last post, I’m going to do another one. This list is basically describing how I am feeling this week – because I am not (mentally) on my game.

  1. One of my “friends” made comments that really made me feel minimized. When I told her my husband had taken last week off (his job gave him the week off) she made the comment about how it must have been nice for me to take a break from parenthood. Uh? When do I get a break? I didn’t? He worked on fixing up a truck all week? She mentioned that it must have been nice to not feel like the “only” parent. Okay, stop right there. I do not feel like the only parent – ever. My husband comes home at the end of the night and spends time with his son. I have no idea how she would get this idea since I have never mentioned anything like that to her. If we have issues with division of anything – it’s the household chores. So, I comment that I truly never feel like I am the only parent. She then responds saying that she would feel that way if she was left at home all day and that I am a better person than she is. WTF. Seriously – who the hell even says that? First, I am not home all day long – I am in class four times a week on a college campus that is thirty minutes away from my home. Then, I never feel like I am all on my own with this parenting thing. Sure, sometimes I feel like I can never get to sit down and truly do homework – but that doesn’t mean that my husband is not being a parent. The fact that she minimized my life, implying that I am home all day long really pissed me off. Like I said, it is really hard to offend me, but this was enough. This friend hardly asks, genuinely asks how my life is going or how I am. She knows nothing about my life because she does not ask – and why would I share with someone who thinks that they could give me advice if I even remotely sound like complaining? More than that, she patronizes me and makes it sound like my life is so hard and I am such a good person for it – when I am not. I am not special for doing this stuff. I am just doing what I have to do.
  2. Finishing this self-paced history class is mentally exhausting. I am finding evidence in the books and taking two drafts in order to put together a coherent essay for this massive written final. More than that, I am trying to hold onto my 4.0 in this class and for the quarter.
  3. My son has been exhibiting behavior that my mother-in-law has enabled. I know that babies scream and cry when they don’t get their way, but there is something not right with this. He is a really even tempered child and I am finding that we are having issues with his screaming when he wants his way. Have I mentioned he is not even a year yet? With that, he is getting back onto a sleep schedule after he was refusing naps and my mother-in-law (who hates screaming) will not allow him to self-soothe. She has created a monster when it comes to nap time. I love my son, but he is wearing me out lately. I need nap time. I NEED nap time.
  4. Money. Enough said.
  5. My class. The work load and the class content is excellent. I absolutely love the reading, the writing prompts, and what I’m reading in the class. However, the dynamic really makes me uncomfortable. I am not that big of a talker. I mean, when I am in a group of people I don’t know – I don’t have a lot to say. Seriously, ask my husband. However, in the classroom setting, I participate and share because how are you supposed to learn from others if you don’t say anything? In this class, I over talk and I know it, and more than that – it makes me uncomfortable. I feel so uncomfortable. There are people there with incredible perspectives that I wish would talk more, because I absolutely love what comes out of their mouths, but nonetheless – I feel like I am the only one speaking. And I don’t want to feel like this. I feel like an outsider, I leave the class feeling stressed and overthinking everything that I said. I’ve worked in small groups plenty of times before, specifically last quarter. Last quarter, my small group – we all shared ideas, thoughts, and talked equally. There was no discomfort when we worked together or collaborated. This class drives me insane and it is beginning to get to me. I love going to class and learning from the material and learning about self-writing. I read a lot of memoirs already, so it is interesting to understand these stories. I just feel as if I am not even myself. I wonder if it sounds like I try too hard (which I don’t, I just come from a background that values participation no matter how much you hate it) or wonder if I know more than everyone else, which I don’t. I can’t place my finger on it, but I absolutely cannot stand how I feel in this class. Luckily, the class is almost over. It is so bittersweet. I love the content, but damn, going to class is just exhausting for me.

I need some self-care. A day when I just take off and get done shit that needs to be done. Get some housework done, get ahead in my English class, get my self-paced final done, maybe even just take a nap – I don’t know, but I need to really feel better than I do now. I feel like I need coffee every single second of the day. I feel like I could just sleep forever (granted, it is ten at night and I have been running around constantly this week). I have a stack of books on my nightstand because I was going to work while my husband sleeps (I have to wait until he is asleep to turn on the light otherwise he won’t), but I think I am just going to say screw it and go to bed. Maybe a good night’s sleep will help me. I will go to sleep and hope that I feel better in the morning.

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Babies are People too

As a parent, I think a lot about what I want to implement regarding my child. He is just a baby, so there is time to think a lot about this. However, my husband and I have decided that since Thor is overwhelmed by big groups of people, we let him decide if he wants to go to someone. If they bring out their hands and he leans and reaches for them, we allow him to go to them, if not – we respect his decision.

20170704_134120This is one thing that my mother-in-law and I were on the same page about. She did the same thing with my husband and I really liked that we felt the same way regarding that. It is a great way that they can test out their own boundaries and learn to say “no” and have that “no” be respected. My mother-in-law has a bigger family and there are plenty of people wanting to hold the baby. However, after a bit and getting to know them, he begins to go to everyone.

My mother’s family is a different story. I specifically told my mom our rule and how important we felt this was. She completely agreed with me. My mom is typically good about listening to what I feel is important for my son. However, when it comes to her family – it all goes out the window. For my mom’s family, her sister is baby crazy. My aunt really had nothing to do with me until I got pregnant and the baby was on the way. Now, she always wants to hold him. It was no big deal when he was very little because he just liked to be held by everyone, but now that he is inching closer to that one year mark, he is a little pickier and groups overwhelm him because he doesn’t know or remember others. My mom hands him over to her at a Father’s Day lunch without him going to her. I was furious, but what was I going to do? Yell at my mom later and tell her that she needs to abide by what I specifically instruct? No. That isn’t going to help, no matter what. So, I back off and tell my mom that her sister has been really bothering me when it comes to my son. Mom brushes it off saying that her sister loves babies and never got to have anymore kids other than her only son.

Well, that’s no excuse for her to act baby crazy with an 8 month old little boy who wants nothing to do with her. So, yesterday at a family party, she reached out for my son. He was with my husband and Thor just stared at her blankly and didn’t put out his arms despite the fact that she did not get the hint. She continued to reach her arms out and Thor continued to stare blankly at her. I finally had to explain that we are allowing him to make his own calls. She was upset.

How can someone be upset when the parents are working on implementing something with their own child? I get that you’re family, but he doesn’t know you well enough. I’m not going to hand him over when he is just going to cry after a couple seconds of being in her arms. I find it extremely disrespectful as another person to have someone question my parenting only because they want to desperately hold a baby. Babies are wonderful to hold, but if they are old enough to understand when they want to go to someone and when they don’t – then that needs to be respected. Babies are people too. We just need to remember that.