I have been bitter, angry. I am impatient and I feel like a spoiled child. My temper has grown increasingly shorter, like a roll of bubble tape that's being chomped on very quickly. At first I understood my feelings as being a part of new motherhood. I am trying to come into my own, I don't want to leave my children feeling they are a devastating creation, and yet I also want them to have independence. Freedom.
But I haven't even started being OK with leaving Little Berry. I wonder if I am imagining it, but all around me I see women whose grip is looser than my own. And yet they seem happy. Happy. A feeling that eludes me even in the sweetest moments. I feel like I'm hyped up on a drug, addicted. To spending time with my daughter.
I wouldn't even feel like it was negative though if my husband didn't resent it. I feel like you don't want any "us time" anymore he says. People said all of the romance would go out of the relationship but I didn't think it would be like this. I blame part of it on my return to school so quickly. Leaving the two week old babe was just so fricking hard. I worked very hard to have the birth I wanted, quiet, unmedicated, at a center that lets you go home three hours after the baby is born.
And when I got home, company. He had decided to invite people over, just four hours after I had the baby, oh.
This has created tension between us as well. I had wanted the first night to be just us. A new family, before the hubbub of visitors. And though it sounds like a small insignificant thing, it is one of the largest reasons I chose to go natural. I wanted to come home the same day. To be a mamma in my own home.
I am still extraordinarily hormonal. I saw a young lady my own age last night at The Chlidren's Place. My baby just turned one she said. I hardly ever get to spend time with her because I'm a manager here. It was late, too. It was 10:00pm on a Friday night. I turned into a puddle of tears, pity really, for this woman, whose baby was merely 4 months older than my own. But she wasn't sorry. She was happy, it was her choice. She was doing it because it was what worked for her, and I pitied because I would have wanted something else.
The judgmental nature of women against other women seems to be a perpetual cycle. We know better than to say critical, snarky things to each other. We have nothing to fear, no true reason to compete. I have become guarded against the words of my own mother you're looking good, dear. Loosing some of that tummy finally now huh? And bitter at the words of others, too. Last week a dear friend told me she did hope I wasn't planning on breastfeeding until she was three! I was shocked at her, surprised. I wanted to snap back first it's none of your business how long I breastfeed my baby, but the global average is 7! I had a complete reserve of angry things to say, but she was my friend. I hadn't prepared to use my weapons on a friend, I felt like I needed to dull them first.
So I told her the truth. I'm planning on breastfeeding until she's three, yes. I was breastfed until I was 4. And though my mother made me feel guilty about it throughout my childhood, I think she did it in my best interest.
This battle: how other women feed their babies? It needs to stop. How long your wife decides to nurse your daughter/ son? That battle needs to stop too. Especially when it's founded on words like
Because really, really, it's just feeding a baby.
The other thing is this- I don't know how long it takes a body to heal from childbirth normally, but I'd expected to be done by now. And the endless litany of complaints I've taken to my midwives is exhausting in itself. Granted, we've not had the easiest time. Little Berry has had Thrush since she was born, and I cannot get her pediatrician to treat it. They keep giving me ridiculous answers, like that yeast doesn't live in your gut...that if there are no signs of it, then she doesn't have it. Their only way of evaluating her is by the white patches in her mouth, and since I have had a running diagnosis of it myself, I know she has it as well. And yes, I have tried everything...
And Europe, we're going to Europe. I've never even flown, but we're going. For goodness knows how long. Maybe six, eight, twelve weeks. Three months. Pappa Starbuck's job search is getting frantic, but surely it will work out. Surely.