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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

To be, or not to be.

     That is indeed, a question with many implications. The past month or so I have been tested to the limit of my patience, faith, and to a degree, my sanity. I love being a mom, believe me, however I would be the first to admit I could have read all the books I want and still not be prepared for the challenges so far. She's only two months.

     While life's instruction manual (The Bible) has examples, I have found it difficult to adhere to the standards it places on my role as "mom" and at times, as "wife". I am not a patient person, don't think I ever was much to begin with, but my lack thereof has been the cause of a quick temper and an increasingly cranky baby. I am a bit selfish, hoping she would sleep a few hours more so I can get the things done I WANT to, but don't NEED or are not as important. The list could continue for most of the page, but I do not wish this to be a personal bashing session. Long story short: I see myself turning into a bit of both of my mothers and this scares the living hell out of me.

     Don't get me wrong, I love them both. I, like I'm sure a lot of people did, swore I would not do things my parents did. While the situations are completely different, some of the personality traits are showing up that I wish to be completely absolved and forgotten. I have seen the selfish, the clinically insane, the quirky, the short tempered, the overbearing, the quick to judge, the unbelieving, and the non-supportive. While there have been things that shaped me for the better, most of these have molded me to see what NOT to do, and how NOT to be. Finding myself being the exact same way at times is like driving a knife through my heart.

     Striving not to be this way is for more than just my parental skills, but for the strength of my marriage. I cannot throw stones in a glass house, however I can see what drove all three of my parents into their current situations. While I wholeheartedly believe my marriage is stronger than any of that, It is not something I wish to be complacent with and take for granted that it will always be here even if I act like a total cur.  No, we aren't having troubles but I wish not to have the same kind of trouble as I've seen over the years.

    My husband said I am too harsh and critical of myself when I should not be. I can see his sentiment, however if I am not at least a little critical of myself, how can I be the person to raise her to be better than me? The fight to be better continues almost daily, but the changes I make will be better for all three of us in the long run, and God willing, help mold my daughter into the woman I have never been.

    

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Hormones?

     I wonder sometimes if men can go through hormone changes like women are said to during pregnancy. Some would call this a hormonal rant, but I don't feel like ranting and raving about nothing important. This actually strikes me as something to be genuinely curious about.

    I love my husband dearly. I do. Really. I think though that he has had more episodes of moodiness than I have on a bad case of PMS. I am not about to call him out on everything that he's been moody over. Firstly due to the fact that, well... this is a big change for him just as much as it is for me. Secondly, because there are just things that I feel need to be left alone so I can sit back and laugh at them when I'm feeling a little put back and out of place. A lot of you don't know my husband at all, and have never met the man. (Not to be biased but he IS a great man) He is the type of person that can go to hell and back and still be the same person he was when he left. He has a strong sense of just who he is, where he is, and what he wants. I love that the most about him. He loves me, and isn't afraid to give me a swift kick when I need it. lol

   He was the first to find out about our daughter, and that is how it should be. I couldn't tell if he was excited or just as scared as I was. In fact, I think I still debate that to this moment. I know he's happy about the baby, but I wish I could tell you that I knew that he was either excited, scared, or even a little bit of both. This may sound like an excuse, but even through 2 years of being together and 1 of which being married... I still have trouble sometimes picking up on his emotional ques. (Not that he drops emotional cues) Usually when he's happy... it is the same as him being sad as far as facial expressions go, so trying to read is as good as staring at a brick wall. It is something he's been getting better at over the time period, but I still don't get why he's like that. It is something I've come to expect and even come to terms with myself, as I am more of one to put how I feel out there weather or not someone wants to know...

    Maybe this is not something I need to be blogging about... but asking about it will just bring about another long conversation on how he's working on it. I know he's working on it... and I can see it... I think it's worse with MY hormones out of whack and his becoming out of whack for him too... He was upset at pizza. yup. pizza. The culprit is still in my fridge, as it is a kind I don't eat. I knew he meant well when I asked him to put it in for me, but he did not see my pizza box on the pan... I wasn't angry, not even sad or upset... and when I was laughing it off and putting MINE in, he got upset about it... I guess something as silly as pizza can get me thinking about something completely irrelevant. lol. Hooray for hormones and the joys of being married!

Guess it's time for me to get on with my "New Years Resolution: Not being prego anymore".

   

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Faith

    I will start out by saying that it took me a long time to think of a title proper for this passage. Personally, I feel it has more to do with the subject matter more than my daughter having way too much fun. (which makes it harder to sit here and type much of anything. ^_^ )


     I remember when I was seven I went to live with my parents. Even at seven I was impressionable and malleable. Both my parents were attenders of the St. Lawrence Catholic Church. This church is beautiful, with it's brick walls and stained glass windows, though the thing I remember the most about it was the large crucifixion of Jesus in the center above the altar. I never remember making an actual conscious decision to become Catholic, though I remember the events of the actual baptism quite well. I never went through a proclamation of faith, and I could tell you at that time I had no idea what exactly baptism meant. I went through the motions that was required of me: Stand there and say "yes father". The priest took my head and, from the thoughts of a seven year old, dunked my head in a pool of crystal clear water, and made a "salad dressing" cross on my forehead. I stood there, with my mom helping me dry off my hair, and thinking to myself what exactly was changed? I didn't feel different... just soaked and hoping the oil would get off my forehead.

     The rest of my life I did not live like I was saved. Yes, I was baptized and received the Catholic tradition of the First Communion. According to those laws of religion I was saved and held accountable for them. All of the many mistakes and lessons I've learned these few years are what some would consider normal. Boy troubles, grades at school, and even the not so special times with the family. I was always aware that things could be a whole lot worse, though it never really came to the front of my mind, nor did I ever really question being saved. There were times that the things of the Bible made sense, though those were definitely few and far between. I guess I was what I would call now, complacent. Why change the status quo when it was not anything detrimental to me? I cracked open the Bible a few times and read passages, though discouraged as most of it made no sense. I even went as far as to go to a Bible Study with a group of classmates. The things they were trying to teach sounded so good in theory, though slightly misguided. I was still impressionable and malleable even at 18, though equally as stubborn.

    Joining the Military did not change my opinion of being saved, though it help me grow slightly more into a person not so stubborn and eager to get things over with. I went to church in basic training like all the other 60+ females in my squad, mostly to get away from my TI for a few minutes a week and even cry without looking like a complete wuss. Everyone cried. Thinking back on it, I wonder how many cried tears of joy, and how many cried tears of sadness like mine... Heading out to my first location overseas was an adventure I was excited to have, though I would not know how much it would really change my life. Not a lot changed between how I lived before joining and how I lived while there, minus the obvious heading out to do a job every day. I lived in a large building, like an old hotel, and shared a bathroom with another girl who did sheet metal. (pretty awesome chick, I might add) I went to the gym every day and worked, worked out, ate, and went to bed. My weekends were usually spent between the base club and doing not much of anything in my room. It was quite lonely for a while until I met the hubby.

     Through all the odds and ends of a crazy deployment, I still believed I was saved. I sat there on the pad with everyone else waiting for us to get the go ahead to leave, and I was eating a cold spaghetti M.R.E. (the only one that tastes remotely decent cold, as the days were 115F and the nights were 80F at least) The events of the past week were floating through my head, and I was silent. I kept thinking about what our chaplain had said earlier about repenting our sins constantly, and that those who were saved were washed clean of them. He had since left us to join with another group of Marines who lost a few people a few days before. I knew that war meant I'd have to go kill people, and that I may not be the same on my return, but I would not have been able to guess how much blood I felt was on my hands. I compare it to being able to cover every single person in a church from head to toe in it. The more I pondered, the more I realized that I was NOT saved. At all. Not even remotely close. The thought bothered me, but I could not do anything about it then, so I stashed it aside to contemplate when I returned and wasn't getting shot at on a daily basis.

    I did return, and I returned to a shattered engagement and almost hollowed out shell of my former self. I had to establish a relationship that I thought I had, and fix the one I messed up. Adding to all of this, I had a time limit. I knew I had orders to another base sitting in my Email In-box, though I really did not want to deal with the orders at that time period. After realizing that drinking myself stupid via Captain Morgan and Coke was not going to help me with anything I had to do, I poured them all down the drain of my sink and wrote down my priority list and taped it to the back of my door, to my computer screen, to my bed, and even so bad as to post it on my bathroom door. I COULD NOT LET IT WAIT. As backwards as it sounds, I decided to fix my engagement first, and I'd be able to better deal with my harder predicament later. Makes things a lot harder saying marriage vows to God, whom you are not right with.

     Moving out to South Dakota has been a refreshing change. Easier to not drink as I was not old enough at the time, and when I did become old enough, the desire had completely left. I bought myself a new Bible. I read through it, and still confused me. I brought up my issue with my husband, who said that it is something he can only help with, I had to come to God myself. All he could do was show me how to go about doing that. I was not right, and I had to get right. The urge hit me more when I realized I was pregnant.

     Though it did take me some time, I became saved, and I actually know more now than I did when I was seven. I am ready now more than I was then to dunk my head in a pool of crystal clear water, and I'll even accept the "salad dressing" cross on my forehead. Then, I can be content in knowing I hold our daughter with clean hands.
 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Incubator

     Typing on Facebook as a "note" vs an actual blogging platform such as this one poses a unique change with the way messages are read. Mostly due to the lack of rich text formatting, one cannot actually indent their paragraphs, include certain types of formatting that allow the writer to emphasize on words or phrases, and otherwise actually narrate whatever it is they are trying to convey with the masses.

     I start with this obvious paragraph because it was brought to my attention while trying to update certain statuses and notes. While editing my work information and personal history, (which I might add I decided to stop doing) I had to sit there and think long and hard about what it is that I actually do. I can claim many interesting and odd things I've done throughout my life, even as short as it is.

    Running through the list of odds and ends through my mind I found myself thinking of the most interesting jobs I've done throughout the last three years. The one that came to the front of my mind was my "career" as a Fitness Professional. All the grunting of men trying to impress themselves in the mirror, women coming to me complaining that they have not lost inches from their waists, and the overall satisfaction of helping someone else better themselves physically and 90% of the time, mentally. Yes, I can claim through certifications and just enough knowledge to consider myself one who knows what i'm talking about, a professional... but that is no longer what I do. I still keep with the paperwork, I still train from time to time with "clients", and I can boast all I wish about how much weight and how many inches my clients have lost through a set time frame... those are not MY accomplishments, however. Those are the boasts of the hard work they put into it utilizing my skills as a person who can write a workout down and get them going.

    Scratching that as a job title, I sifted through the thinking cap once again and came out with my "desert profession" as I call it. The Military is an honorable profession, and Veteran of a Foreign War is a title I wear proudly to this very second and will throughout my life. I deployed down to the "sandbox" to do what it is that they told me to do: break things, and kill people. Crude, but simple and easy to understand without a ton of jargon or military complications to go along with it. (even though there are a TON of small "minor" details we're not getting into) So, long story short, I went out there and got shot at, mortared, and all around bloody for the Flag and Uncle Sam. Some things I did down there were indeed "honorable" and then some things I did were not so "honorable"... comes with the uniform and the opinions of those who do not wear it. Along the same lines as the Fitness Professional, it is no longer what I do. I hung up my uniform, my boots, and my tags for reasons that are my own.

    By this time I am racking my brain. I'm running out of options. I no longer DO anything really... and then I received a swift KICK in the belly by my own yet to be born baby. Like a light bulb going off in my head, the idea struck me... I am an incubator! I sit here and grow people... That makes me pretty crafty. I am currently incubating, so I can certainly claim this! I hurry and type this in the "work information" box... and it comes up as something completely new.. like no one else has incubated before or even thought of it as a profession. Dumbfounded was not quite the word I would use to describe my sudden confusion. I know there are other people that are prego too. I see a plethora of pregnant women around here often enough to feel like I'm in a school of fish, and I am in the middle of NOWHERE! I know Facebook has to have millions of prego people... but not one of them considers this a job.

     Last I checked, I am burning 200+ calories around the clock, and I am constantly caring for something growing in my stomach like an awesome tumor/alien/it/anything else I've called it for the past 9 months that I can't wait to look at, hold, and even cuddle with. The demands of this is by far more invasive than any other profession I've held thus far, and she's not even born yet. I know a few people who consider being a stay at home mom a profession, and I agree, but I'm not quite there yet... or am I? I've been sitting here and pondering this while writing this wonderful passage of insight into my life. (Gotta love multi-tasking) I sat back in my chair, holding one hand on my belly and the other on the mouse.

     All of her not so little kicks and elbow jabs feel like a constant reminder of all the things that are about to change, and the responsibilities I have to not only learn, but master in quite a short time. I have not changed a diaper in at least 10 years, though I'm sure it is like riding a bike. (At least that's what they tell me) I know this is all just part of the process into becoming a mom, and being nervous about everything a few weeks before birth is apparently also normal. Normal like washing all of her baby clothes 4 times in Dreft is normal... lol

     I am coming to terms with the fact that I will have someone who is counting on me to know what to do. I am the diaper changer and the breast feeder. I am the solid ground and the spiritual guide. I am the discipline and the comforter. I am part of the Love that does not change. I am Mom. For now, I am The Incubator.

Friday, December 3, 2010

I can't believe I'm doing this

     I am not about to introduce myself, most of you reading this KNOW WHO I AM... on top of that, you're probably laughing as I break and submit myself to the typing torture: daily life.... random things I figure out... crazy times in dealing with a new marriage and well... lets face it... a new smaller version of myself who, if she had her way, would be out already.
     My life is a simple one, though not without its own set of challenges... anything and everything from the military, the in-laws.. and not even so sacred as to skip my own side of the family... all three sides of it. Could this actually work as a type of therapy? I hope so, because there are times I'm surprised that I still have hair left.


   processing the weeks events: I AM 9 months prego, and by prego I mean OUT TO HERE PREGO. I waddle, I pee every 5 minutes, I am pretty certain that my internal organs and back are about to throw in the white towel any minute, and I do not remember what my feet look like, and at least twice a day all hell breaks loose in the uterus via elbows, feet, and claws... but through all this temporary pain and minor body inconveniences I can't wait to actually have this little terror in my arms. 

    I was about to settle myself for a small nap the other day at around 9PM as I'm tossing and turning throughout the night, in my not so little pillow fort, when my husband announces that we're going on a date. Then he passes out and I swear he snores like a bear... I wonder if that is what is keeping our daughter up all night long? He refuses to tell me where we are going, what we are doing, and how I'm supposed to look when we go. I'm perfectly OK with a surprise mystery date, but there are a few things I kinda need to know before... like if a T-shirt and Jeans are OK for this or am I going to have to pull out some "fancy" clothes (if I even have any that I fit into). I'm pretty excited about that, though I almost can't believe I feel so domesticated... it's only been a year and I'm already enjoying Rubbermaid tupper-wear, my kitchen table "Christmas present", and an awesome vacuum cleaner. if you had told me I would actually ENJOY tupper-wear 4 years ago I probably would have laughed in your face and said "NO WAY! my mom is into that stuff, talk to her" and yet here I am... making leftovers... calling my grandma/mom/MIL for cooking advice/baby advice/pregnancy problems.... it does not make me sad, it was just more of a stunning realization. 21, married, and prego. yup. time flew. only thing left now is for the gray hair. : p