family, parenthood

Expectations VS Reality

I’m following someone from my past who just recently had a baby. She had a difficult birth and since her first wasn’t the ideal birth she envisioned, the second was a bit harder to handle it seems since she had all these expectations of what and how she wanted it to be the second time around. She’s very much immersed into the whole motherhood and body thing where she’s all about being in tune with her body during her whole pregnancy and is very into the whole natural birthing wonder of the human body. Her baby had some difficulty after birth and had to spend a few weeks in the NICU. I know she’s probably just venting on Facebook, a space where she’s surrounded by friends and family and a wonderful support group, but as an acquaintance who also went through some difficulty after birth, it’s a tad frustrating to read through these comments of what she thought things would be like and how they are supposed to be and how disappointed and frustrated she is with reality. Like, we get it. You can’t spend the time you want with your older son in this beautiful weather because your little one is taking up so much of your time. I get what it’s like to be cooped up at home and not get some fresh air because you’re just busy with a baby whose sole mission in its little life so far is to make you miserable and hate yourself with inconsolable crying. I get that life was difficult and disappointing and nothing like you imagined it when your baby was in the NICU and whisked away from you after birth. BUT YOU ARE NOT THE ONLY ONE. I think I’m more sensitive to her postings because I went through it too, but never venting about it on Facebook and only a few close people know about Shane and his struggles. I think I’m just annoyed because I feel as though she has all these expectations about how motherhood should be – the adorable hours of intoxicating baby smells and cuddles, the dreamy closeness you get when you’re breastfeeding, and the magical feeling you get when you’re baby wearing and able to function in public with the use of both your hands. BUT THESE ARE NOT EVEN REAL EXPECTATIONS. THESE ARE EXPECTATIONS CULTIVATED BY THE MEDIA AND SOCIETY. YOU AREN’T DOING ANYTHING WRONG IF YOU’RE SPENDING DAYS AT HOME WITHOUT SHOWERING BECAUSE YOUR BABY WON’T STOP CRYING FOR LONGER THAN 10 MINUTES IN STRETCHES OF HOURS. YOU’RE NOT GOING TO MISS OUT ON BONDING MOMENTS IF YOU DON’T BREASTFEED. YOU DON’T NEED TO FEEL LIKE SHIT IF YOU PUT YOUR OLDER CHILD UP IN FRONT OF A TV WHEN YOU’RE CARING FOR A BABY OR IF YOUR CHILD FALLS IN THE PLAYGROUND AND YOU’RE NOT THERE IN TWO SECONDS TO PICK HIM UP BECAUSE YOUR HANDS ARE FULL WITH ANOTHER BABY. YOU’RE NOT A FAILURE BECAUSE OF ANY OF THIS. WE’RE ALL JUST SURVIVING. WE’RE ALL JUST TRYING TO GET AS MUCH SLEEP AS WE CAN WHILE WE TRY TO FIND OURSELVES IN THIS NEW ROLE AS A MOTHER (OF MULTIPLES). WE’RE ALL TRYING TO FIND A SWEET SPOT WHERE WE TEETER ON THE BRINK OF HAPPINESS/SANITY AND COMPLETE, UTTER MADNESS.

I’m just tired. And annoyed.
All I really have to do is UNFOLLOW.

I am actually really happy for her. She has a wonderful social media following and feels comfortable enough to share all her worries on her page. Some days I wish I had that. Others, I am just grateful for the support system I have now.

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Death By Boob

These past few days, I’ve been battling a plugged duct and a case of self-diagnosed rotavirus. As I sat on the toilet shitting liquid poop like water from a water gun while breastfeeding my little baby, I contemplated my week and wondered how it had led me to be comfortable to this state of ridiculousness.

This is how my week has looked so far..

Monday – granddaddy doesn’t work. hubby went into work on his day off to put in more hours on account of us not being able to make our payments last month (le sigh).
Woke up feeling feverish.
630AM the older baby his AM bottle and changed his diaper, and gave the little baby to the parents so I could nap in a little while longer
830AM little baby was brought up to me on account of needing to be fed. grandmommy tells me big baby only got half a banana and had one container of Danimal (he normally gets a waffle and a full banana for breakfast). I ask her to give him a bottle and to put him into bed for his AM nap since he was signing that he was tired
[[AM nap for babies and me while daddy and grandmommy goes to work]]
11AM woke up in a cold sweat with little baby climbing all over me. fed little baby. changed little baby’s diaper. brought little baby down to living room very slowly since I’m dizzy when I stand. went up and changed big baby’s diaper on account of him yelling and making his awoken slumber aware. brought big baby down. let them play around in the living room for a little while while I sat on the couch sweating bullets and freezing my ass off.
12PM big baby signs he’s hungry. fix him a pb sammich and banana. little one is whining and wants to be held. I put on Paw Patrol while I hold little baby and big baby eats.
1230PM big baby is done and needs to be washed and changed and played with. I can’t function at this point. I’m dizzy, sweating, can’t catch my breathe when I stand. I ask the granddaddy to help and take over and play with babies while I try to nap it off.
1PM granddaddy calls me from downstairs asking me to come down
130PM granddaddy calls me again
2PM granddaddy calls me again. I go down and scream that all I asked was for a little time so I can recover. I’m freezing, dripping sweat like I had a fake hose stuffed up my shirt and had it rain on my head, exhausted, frustrated. he takes one look at me and goes downstairs to his room. I feed little baby. I try to play with babies, but realize immediately that I should not and cannot be around them in my state. I scream at him to come upstairs and relieve me. I begin to hyperventilate under the anxiety that I can’t even function as a mommy right now. hands begin to cramp due to lack of O2. I freak out knowing this is a very very very bad move. I lie down on the floor to calm down. I eventually make it up the stairs back into bed. I call hubby and see if he can come home a little early from work on account of me being under the weather. I sink into darkness and thank the sweet Lord for having help even if it was forced
4PM hubby comes home and hands little baby to me telling me he thinks he’s hungry. I feed little baby and tell hubby that big baby can nap
6PM little baby wakes. I ask hubby to take him and check diaper and to take him downstairs.
[[From here on out, it was a blur. Everything from that night was a blur. All I know is that the hubby brought the little baby to me when he was hungry and sleepy and little baby napped with me. I wrapped myself in two thick blankets and sweat my life away. I woke up every 30 minutes to make sure I wasn’t smothering little baby who cosleeps with us. I think I went downstairs for a little bit when the grandmommy came home and went right back up to sleep. Poor hubby took care of so much that night. He came up to sleep sometime when I was passed out.]]
Fed little baby a few times throughout the night, but didn’t check on big baby until the next morning on account of me not feeling stupid dizzy from standing to walk a few steps to the bathroom. I didn’t wanna risk going in and collapsing in the middle of the night.

Tuesday – granddaddy went to work around 11AM. nobody else was home.
I wasn’t as dizzy this day. I was able to go downstairs without feeling like I was going to collapse. Grandparents were able to take care of babies in the AM until their AM nap. I was able to take care of babies until hubby came home. Just very, very slowly. I had an utter breakdown that evening because little baby WOULD. NOT. SHUT. THE. FUCK. UP. He just whined and whined and whined and whined. I began crying and sobbing hysterically to the point where I think my mother called the hubby to tell him to come help me. LULZ. The sheer embarrassment where I could not even handle myself.

Wednesday – granddaddy doesn’t work
I feel a bit better, just stomach cramps and lots and lots of runny poop. Still only at 85%. I had a meltdown at night because hubs brought up a half sleepy baby who just wanted to roll around and head butt my face and sore body. BUT I fell asleep at sometime and apparently little baby eventually fell asleep next to me. This terrified me because he could have easily fallen off the bed and I would not have been the wiser. I was that exhausted. I couldn’t believe I could have actually fallen asleep before little baby. I made the decision that if I ever feel that exhausted again, I will alert hubby so he can watch baby or let little baby cry it out in his crib as to not endanger him ever again.

Thursday – Everyone works.
I survived. I feel better. It’s the evening now. I think I’m at a good 90%. I’ve been so, so angry these past few days. I have been screaming at the babies, cursing at the world, and just been all around a complete and utter bitch. My poor hubby and my poor parents have had to endure my complete breakdown these past few days.

Writing this has taken me decades it seems. It’s most definitely now bedtime. I don’t think I’ve had a coherent thought since my first pregnancy. My brain jumps from one thing to another. I don’t think I’ve ever had one string of thought that made sense. Even speaking to my friends, I know I don’t make sense sometimes. I start by talking about one thing then end with a completely different topic.

Anyhoo, I don’t remember what this whole rant was about. All I know is that I have been the worst mother and worst daughter and worst wife in these past few days I have ever thought I could be. And I wish I could take it all back. I wish I was a better person. I wish I was a better person under pressure. I wish I was a better mother. I saw the look on my little baby’s face when I yelled at him these past few days. He was so confused and upset. I saw the confusion on the big baby’s face when I yelled at him for communicating with me. They don’t know better, but I do. I was awful. Truly awful. I need to learn to be a better person.

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$10.07

Today, I spent $10.07 on bubble tea. We’re really beginning a monetary cleanse. This is going to be tough. Money management is not our best trait.

Shane has a super bad diaper rash today. He’s been screaming when I wipe his butt. Seriously heartbreaking. Baby Dom is doing just fine – moseying about his usual difficult self.

I’m at another crossroads in life. I’m failing 3/5 of my classes. I’m not doing well. Halfway through the semester, Baby Dom switched from his swing to our bed. Ever since that time, it’s been difficult to keep updated and stay focused on school. I’ve been exhausted, sleep deprived, constantly struggling to keep up with a toddler and an infant, trying to keep up with household chores, and trying to keep hubby happy and in line. Failed my classes. Failing at being a wife. Failing at being a daughter. Failing at being a mother. Failing at being a CFO of this family. Failing at being the CEO of this family. I’m just so darn tired. Like all the time. Like, why. How do others do this? I know that this is possible – to go to school, to be a mother, to be a daughter, to manage the family’s finances, and have a clean house. So why am I struggling with this so much? Is it because some women have men who help out more? Is it because these women have a stronger will than I? Is it because I’m just weaker than most? Why can’t I seem to get my shit together? It’s been 18 months since I first became a mother. Shane’s not gaining weight. I still can’t get good grades in school. I can’t keep a clean house. I can’t seem to put dinner on the table most nights. Am I just lazy? Am I just an awful person? Am I that selfish that I can’t take care of myself AND the family? I see all these friends around me who are just beginning their lives – getting engaged, getting married, buying homes, going on honeymoons, graduating schools, and even advancing in their careers. Here I am, in the dark, venting away on a blog site about my woes and failing all of my classes and being broke and feeling like a failure. I’m just so.. depressed. I see my mommy friends who are in love with their lives whether they are a working mother or a stay-at-home mom. Why can’t I have that same love towards my babies? I’m just resenting my life and trying to make the best of it, but hating myself and who I am. I have to find my identity outside of school, outside of the babies. Who am i? A mother, a sister, a wife, a daughter, a student, a money manager? Why do I suck at everything? Taking a few semesters off is probably a great thing for me. But it makes me feel like such a failure. Taking some time to do nothing but put focus towards the babies are probably the best things for me to do right now. So why do I feel like I’m losing myself to this thing called motherhood? I suck. I suck so hard. I would really like to seek professional help, but we’re having insurance issues. Insurance issues and coverage are huge factors in receiving this care. Mental health assistance in this country is so tough. Even for those who are seeking help.

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Stretchy McStretch

Today I found that I have more stretch marks than I thought I had. I found marks on my thighs. I noticed I had purple stretch marks on my butt when we went to the beach a few weeks ago, but these stretch marks seem to be increasing in quantity. I am so glad my husband still loves me and is still wanting to touch me.

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Lonely Days

I’m in a group of friends who are either single or dating. A few friends are engaged or newlyweds, but none are thinking of children yet. We were launched into a world of being a family much, much quickly than expected. We got married in May 2014 and had a child by November 2014. We are now expecting another in November 2015. By the end of year 2015, we will be a family of 4.

It shouldn’t bother me much that our friends wouldn’t invite us to certain group activities since we are a big family and it’s a bit of a hassle to travel with, but it does. It bothers me that when we get invited to an event, we have to think of bathroom situations, baby entertainment situations, and financial situations. Is there a changing table in the bathroom? If there isn’t, where will we change him? Is there enough room in this restaurant for a stroller to fit next to our table? If Shane gets fussy, would I be able to hold him and entertain him without having to worry or be judged by our dinner neighbors about a yelling child? Are we able to afford this dinner and still have money for gas and weekly expenses? Are we splitting this bill evenly even though we had a bowl of soup and a salad? If we do decide to hang out at this event, will we be home in time so we get enough sleep for the next day’s activities? It bothers me more that we have so many things to worry about if and when invited to an event.

We’re on an extreme budget ever since I quit my job to stay at home with baby Shane. Budgeting isn’t much on our friends’ minds since they don’t have too many expenses, but it’s something that is constantly on our minds. After bills, we’re left with such little to work with. Sometimes it’s a choice of whether to go out to dinner with friends or getting groceries for the week. It has come down to making the decision of either going out to grab a cup of coffee with a friend or getting a box of granola bars for my husband’s breakfasts for the week. I understand that this isn’t something that is on many peoples’ minds since we’re in a completely different stage of life than they are, but it’s a lonely road. I do have a few friends who are mothers and struggling as we are, but they are all so far away in distance. Their children are also a little older so they have their hands a bit full with their toddlers who come with a whole other set of difficult struggles.

I should reach out to mommy groups in the area, but it just seems like such a huge hassle. It’s tough getting this 10 month old baby out for his specialist appointments and my OB appointments. How am I supposed to be willing to go out and be polite around strangers who are also struggling daily? Would it not be a blind leading the blind situation?  Then there are those who do seem like they have it all together. They’ve lost their baby weight. They’ve gotten a routine down. They have family or a sitter so they have their own self time.

Some days I feel like I’m drowning. Other days I feel so incredibly blessed for this path of life.

I know I don’t walk alone down this road, but it sure feels lonely.

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Guilty

So our dog is acting up. I’ve been switching his feed times from anywhere between 12pm – 4pm and I think he’s not doing the best dealing with the changes. He’s been having accidents in the house; peeing and pooping. He’s been nervous around other people again and he’s been antsy. I haven’t been taking him out as often as we used to. We take him out in the morning, after his lunch, and after his dinner meals; 6a, 3p, and around 11p. Recently, we’ve been working around home health visits, doctor appointments, and other such activities. Baby Shane’s feeding times have been all over the place. Baby Cody’s feeds and walks have been all over the place. Baby Donte was without food for a full day because we didn’t have time to get to the pet store and get his dry food. I know I should be getting back to the basics and put together a routine for all the babies, but it’s so difficult. I set a routine and I don’t wake up on time and throw off the entire day. Sometimes I’m just exhausted. Sometimes the babies start spitting up, chasing squirrels, refuse to go to the bathroom, are feeling lazy, or being just plain butt-facey. Even with the dog having accidents everywhere, I feel like a failure. I know it’s my fault. Ultimately, I’m the one who is responsible for them. I should be the one who takes care of them, makes sure that things like this doesn’t happen. I feel like a failure when my baby cries because of a soiled diaper or because he’s just fussy and wants to be held. I feel like a failure when my cat is rubbing up all over me because he feels neglected and ignored. I feel like a failure when the dog is chasing the cat because he isn’t getting enough stimulation and feels cooped up at home with all his pent up adolescent energy. I feel like a failure because I feel like I have to stay home and make sure Shane attends to all his doctor’s appointments and is getting enough stimulation for developmental growth. I feel like I can’t continue school because I have a 2.0 GPA and I am being forced to step out of the program until I can raise it back up to a 2.5. I feel like a failure as a wife because I’m not making money and not contributing financially. I can’t cook too well. I can’t clean very well. I’m a procrastinator. I’m exhausted all the time. I feel like I’m a failure for feeling like a failure. I know I can’t juggle everything, but I can’t help feeling like I should. Are my standards too high for myself or am I just feeling everything others feel? Either way, I’m guilty of being a failure. At everything.

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