When I Grow Up

6 Dec

I want to be a mom.

It took me a long time to accept this. It’s not that there was a time when I didn’t want kids. In fact, it’s just the opposite. I have wanted to be a mother for as long as I can remember. However, it took me quite some time to admit to both myself and to others that this is the only thing that I want to be.

Throughout my life the end of this sentence changed as I evolved. A lawyer. A teacher. The President. A social worker. And then back to teacher. I went to college and got my degree in English. I drew on my background experience and spent the majority of my career as a Preschool Teacher and then a Director. It was fulfilling for the most part and my heart was about 99% in it. But. <—-There’s that word. The word that signifies that there was always something missing. Eventually I realized that what was missing was that these were other people’s children that I was caring for. I loved my days, but then I went home alone each evening.

All the while, my friends (my peers) were doing the same thing right along side me, earning their degrees (sometimes advanced) and beginning their career paths. But me, I just wanted to be a mom.

My husband and I have been married for a little over 3 years. Our wedding day was absolutely amazing and our babies (however far from being conceived that they were at that point) were a big part of our day. I mentioned them in my vows. Tim mentioned them in his. They were mentioned in our reader’s readings and in the many speeches that were made. The word ‘brood’ was used more than once because it has never been any secret that I wanted kids. Many, many kids.

I feel like I am on this Earth to be a mother. I simply know that it is my greatest purpose.

When I was laid off from my job in January of 2011, my husband and I thought it would be the perfect time to start a family. We have always discussed that so long as we are financially able, I would stay home with our kids. So when I found myself unemployed it just seemed like the best time to put that plan into action. Little did we know that 9 months after starting this journey there would be very little progress.

Anyway, all this is to say that I am feeling stagnant. I am not working, certainly not for lack of trying. I am also not pregnant, certainly not for lack of trying. This leaves me feeling stuck, caught up in this place of constant waiting. Waiting to get my period. Waiting to ovulate. Waiting to pee on a stick. Waiting to fulfill my purpose in this life.

This hit me hard the other day. Typically, I love Christmas. I love trimming the tree and I love the party that we throw for our friends each year. But this year just feels different. This past Saturday, Tim and I were decorating our tree and listening to Christmas music and suddenly I was overcome. I just started sobbing because I couldn’t stop thinking about how we should be celebrating this Christmas with a baby. If things had worked out as I had assumed that they would, then we would have been decorating our tree with our baby. Our baby’s first Christmas. And yet, we aren’t. My heart just felt so unbelievably broken. I have been in a funk ever since. Something just feels like it’s missing. I am growing tired and weary of this process. I am so over wishing, waiting, and hoping. I’m over feeling high on hope only to be crushed with disappointment.

And then there is the party. Pregnant woman and new moms will abound.

I went to visit one of my best friends this past weekend who has a one month old. For 3 hours all she talked about was herself. I mean, I get it. She’s a new mom, her son is precious, and this is the biggest thing to ever happen in her world. It should be talked about. But she didn’t even ask me how I am. Not getting pregnant aside, she didn’t even ask about anything in my life. In fact, she started discussing her plans for baby #2 this summer. I had to draw the line. I had to get up and walk out. It was insensitive and too much for me to bear. And I fear I am in for more of that this weekend at our party, which is making me dread something that I look forward to every year.

Instead, I have found myself obsessing over our new-ish house. I want everything to be perfect for this party. I don’t have a baby and I don’t have a job. But I do have this house and all the energy that I have poured into it. I want it to look perfect. I want to show that I am capable of creating something. I want to prove that I have something to show for this past year. That this past year wasn’t just a waste.  I was busy. So I have been obsessing. Obsessing over some semblance of progress in order that the stagnancy that I am feeling inside not be portrayed on the outside. In order that I can keep that part of me a secret. A secret, that might actually unburden me if only someone would think to ask me how I am doing, how I am coping.

…I know my thoughts are quite disjointed this evening, but I had to get them out. I’ll be spending the next few days seeking perfection in the areas in which I have some semblance of control, so things may be quiet on the blog front until next week. Please keep me in your thoughts that I make it through the weekend without blowing up or breaking down.

Thanks. Sincerely.

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10 Responses to “When I Grow Up”

  1. jell jell @ I'll Sleep When They're Grown December 8, 2011 at 12:27 am #

    Focus on your house and enjoy your parties now. Because when you do get preggo, you just don’t have the energy to keep the house more than swept and danger-proof (mostly). I’m sorry that the new mom over-stimulated you…but for some reason I related to that absurdly inwardly-focused time of having a newborn. I also totally relate to you about wanting the baby now (we’re TTC and it’s taking some time). I just know that when you are running on that little sleep and are ONLY thinking about your baby and whether or not they are hungry/wet/sleepy, you are not a good conversationalist. Give her some time and I bet in a few months she will recognize that chatting up someone who’s TTC about one’s own new baby might be overwhelming. Good luck! And feel better.

  2. amy December 7, 2011 at 10:05 pm #

    Wow, it’s taken me long enough to finalllly reply to your award. THANK YOU sweet friend for the Liebster Award. Thank you for all your support and friendship 🙂 xoxo Now, I must catch up on your blog!!

    • LifeAsModernWife December 8, 2011 at 12:01 am #

      I hear you Jenn! It’s like there’s some sort of gene that kicks in when you’re in your mid-twenties and all of a sudden you feel a longing to be a mother.

      I wish you all the best in your preparations – but don’t burn yourself out striving for perfection 🙂

      • Jenn December 8, 2011 at 12:07 am #

        Thanks for you well wishes! And I will try to take your advice 🙂

  3. Theresa December 7, 2011 at 7:20 pm #

    I totally hear you on the holidays. I’ve almost been counting down to when they are over.

    I also hear you on the obsessing about something else . I’m pretty sure 90% of the reason I’m training for this race is to distract myself. Like if I can’t have a baby, at least I can say I did x and y. Sigh.

    You’re not alone.

    • Jenn December 7, 2011 at 11:01 pm #

      The race sounds like a great distraction! Maybe I will have to try that once this party is over. Thank you 🙂

  4. K.Smitty December 7, 2011 at 5:56 pm #

    OMG I want to smack that girl for you! I hate how they can’t see how selfish they’re being. Yeah, you’re right, they should talk about their kid, but I just get absolutely APPALLED when I can stand there and talk to someone for 30 minutes and they leave and I think, “Wait a minute, did that just happen? Did I actually let them talk to me for 30 minutes and ask them about their lives while they completely avoided asking ME that question?” Then I wonder if I’m the one being selfish, but I always come to the conclusion that asking “How are you?” is a basic courtesy I deserve as a human being. My heart goes out to you there. Good for you for walking out. I could not have stood there for 3 hours.

    Sadly, I have also found myself in a similar slump about the holidays. I was decorating my tree last night and it wasn’t nearly as fun as I think it should have been. Hopefully that will get better for you soon. I’m hoping I will at least wake up Christmas morning excited about seeing family.

    And good luck with your party! Good for you for pouring some positive energy in your house. It may not be what you want to pour your energy into, but hopefully it’s enough of a distraction. I wish I could offer some advice, but you know I’m feeling a lot of the same junk you are right now, so just remember you’re not alone and I’m here for ya!

    • Jenn December 7, 2011 at 11:05 pm #

      Being asked how you are is TOTALLY a basic courtesy. It’s small talk if nothing else…the thing that gets me is that I ALWAYS make sure to ask other people when I feel like I have been talking about myself too much. It just baffles me that other people lack that self awareness. I am certainly far from perfect, but I do consider myself super courteous.

      Sorry to hear you’re a little holiday slump too. We must rally and try to appreciate these days for what they are. I’m glad you have seeing your family to look forward to.

      Thanks girl! And I’ll let you know if I need someone to smack my friend for me 😉

  5. searching for middle ground December 7, 2011 at 1:23 pm #

    You’re certainly not alone! I hope you know that. When I was in school getting my BS and then my Masters, the only thing on my mind was my career – starting a job, working long, hard hours, being the best at my job that I could possibly be. I think every new graduate has those same feelings – thinking you can conquer anything and that you’re going to take the world by storm! After working for several years and getting married, my desire for a more than successful career has sort of been put to the side as I start to realize what really is important to me, and that is my family, current and future. I too believe that I was put on this earth to be a mother and this makes me anxious for many many reasons. It’s hard to see everyone, it seems, around you, moving forward and getting pregnant and having a brood of babies while you feel stuck. I fall into that same trap – letting other dictate my feelings, comparing my life, and lack of babies, to friends who are already on #3. I’m not overly religious, but I do tend to believe that everyone is put on this earth for a reason and that God has a plan for everyone. You may feel lost and anxious right now but try to enjoy the time that you have – life is short and one day you might look back on this period of time and wish you had spent that time being happier. Your time will come, you will become a mother 🙂 Stay positive!

    • Jenn December 7, 2011 at 4:29 pm #

      Thanks 🙂 The “friends” I have made via my blog have certainly help me to feel less alone…this includes you, of course.

      And you’re right. I do need to focus more on what I do have because there are a lot of wonderful things in my life. I really need to learn to focus on the positive and not dwell so much on the negative or compare myself to other so much. I’m usually pretty good at that, I guess I was just having a bad day. Thanks for the dose of positivity. I really needed that. You’re also right that our time will come someday 🙂

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