Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Brain Drain


When I first became pregnant, I began to notice it. The inability to function the way I once did. I just couldn't remember small details... information would hit my ears, enter my brain and evaporate into thin air. My friends would say, "Its placenta brain." All the pregnancy hormones were messing with my brain function and one day, I would have it all back. Countless times, I lost my keys, my shoes...forgot names, numbers, appointments. I would think to myself...just a few more months.

It never seemed to get better. It changed its name to "Mommy brain." No longer able to function at 50% capacity, I am on 100% all times. Between running my house, my job and managing my kids, I can actually feel my brain exhaust itself as each day progresses. I now write things down, text myself, ask others to remind me of things, all in an effort to regain some control. By the end of most days, I find myself literally shutting down and going blank if just for 5 seconds trying to recharge the small mental energy I have left.

I hear stories from those who have been down my path that it gets better. One day the kids get older and the world slows down. I'm not sure I believe them for I have heard the legends of menopause and the fun that is to come... little did I know the moment of conception would forever make me a little less competent :-)

Monday, March 22, 2010

Ruby Red Slippers


My daughter was handed down a pair of ruby red slippers from her cousin. From the moment I saw the shoes, I was taken over the rainbow to a place where roads are yellow, scarecrows talk and lions are far from ferocious. Witches are good and bad, houses fly and horses are of a different color. Where lollipop men sing songs, monkeys fly and a bucket of water is the most powerful weapon. I was taken back to a time in my life when movies are windows into a world that could truly exist and yearn to be apart of them.

The moment my daughter saw them her eyes widened and glimmered with the recognition that these shoes were special. She put on a dress and I braided her hair... little did she know the enjoyment it gave me to create my own little Dorothy. She loved how they sparkled and how every one told her how beautiful they were. She seemed lighter in her step and won't take them off.

A simple pair of shoes, a shared moment in time where we were both children excited by the pretty red shoes. There really is no place like home.

Monday, March 15, 2010

The best of both Worlds

Not quite a stay at home mom (SAHM), and not quite a working mom... I can have it all right?

Years before ever having a child, I wanted to stay home with my kids. I did not want to miss all of the little things that pass by so quickly. I soon realized that staying home wasn't really up to me. Could we afford it? How would we manage? Could we sacrifice enough? Luckily, I was able to stay at home for the first months of my children's lives. I starting working while each was approx. 6 months.

Those first months taught me a lot about the challenges of being a SAHM. Nobody values your time. They see you as always free when it is really quite the opposite. People are always commenting about how much or little you are able to accomplish and how they feel about it... as if they are giving you an employee review. It gets lonely. Little problems can grow big because you are immersed in children. You pounce on your husband after work and beg him to fulfill your need for social interaction, but his fried brain always falls short. No time for anything, yet always free. You almost become an island... not quite sure where the water begins and you end.

My job is not the ordinary job. I work only 2 days a week, but the preparation for class follows me home. I am only out of the house for ten hours, but for hours, I have two jobs: mom & teacher. It is always a struggle the first days of the semester. I never want to leave my girls, but after the first day, I am thrilled to have a moment to myself. I am able to be myself, not Mom. I am able to actually meet and succeed challenges... not just manage the issues that never go away.

Having a foot in each door, makes me feel like I am master of none. My time away is tainted with guilt... home yet, work is still there keeping me away... my time at home tainted with guilt. Mothering is a 24 hour a day job. To add more to the table is daunting at best, but adding the complexities of work, makes me feel overwhelmed. I am lonely and consumed without having the time away from home. The time at home forever impacted by the job. Women try to have it all, yet we can never truly obtain it. We are only human. The best of both worlds is not really the best... but it is both worlds and for that I am blessed.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

What happened to the fairy tale?

There was a time when I didn't believe in fairy tales. I had kissed to many frogs and they stayed just that... frogs. Then, I met Prince Charming. He truly swept me off my feet and made me feel like Cinderella. We were passionate together... not perfect... we fought as passionately as we lived.We lived life fully and agreed when to take the next leap. Honeymooning in Disney even reaffirmed the reality of fairy tales. Then we decided to have kids.

Having the first child was stressful. We lost our spontaneity. We had a third party enter our lives and our bed. We adjusted slowly over the first year. It was a tag team event and both of us had some down time and moments of peace where it was just us. Then we decide, one more.

We now moved to man on man. He worked all day to come home and work all night. I worked all day to work all night. The fairy tale turned into a struggle for us to just be together. Marriages began to fall around us and I realized how you can take the wrong turn. Every belief is exposed, every value compared in the most stressful of environments. A new test await around every turn.

I still look at him and see why I fell in love. I have faith the fairy tale is still alive. The rose has thorns, but its the flower where we find the beauty. We may meet challenges along the way but its how we meet them and overcome them. We still have Prince Charming and Cinderalla and we are working towards our happy ending.

Monday, March 8, 2010

I refuse to give up

Its been weeks since I have written a thing and my first instinct is to walk away... to chalk this up to a venture that was "too much", but I refuse. Working part-time and raising 2 toddlers seems an impossible and daunting task on its own. Why would I even begin to try to add to my stress.

I started this blog for important reasons. As a person, I am driven by a sense of accomplishment. As a mother, accomplishment has very different meaning. I felt so alone. Everything I read was about the joys of motherhood, and it seemed as if I was the only one struggling. I needed to give myself a voice. A voice that stood strong and announced to the world that motherhood was joyous, but also stressful, crazy and at times lonely. I wanted others to know how I felt so in some way we could bear this journey together.

By trying to laugh through the hard times, the good times came quicker. However, falling prey to the every day and drowning in the tornado of life, left me once again silent, alone and doubting myself. Just as a pheonix rises from the ashes, this mother is going to rise from chaos and follow my heart. Here is to meeting that challenge!!!!