Saturday, August 13, 2011

When Pride is Good or Bad

I do believe I over-compensate. I’ve been through so much in my short life, particularly that devastatingly fateful year we called 2009, that after I got out of my brief I-don’t-care-about-anything-anymore phase, I flipped around to trying to be the one to make everything work somehow, prove people wrong, prove my own doubts wrong, etc. ..

I won’t go into what all I went through that year, but that summer was definitely my lowest of the low as far as who I was goes (not what I did, rather what I didn’t. The former took a year from that point to happen). I honestly believe I survived swine flu (if for no other reason than I know someone who did & her symptoms were very similar). What I went through is what I believe left me vulnerable. Mid-April found me afraid to go anywhere, afraid of even my own shadow. Panic attacks were my constant companion & ate at my entire being. The last few weeks of college found me getting more & more sick. I went from a mostly A student to dropping classes, failing classes, taking incompletes & missing finals because I was so ill.

The summer that followed left me completely out of it. My kids started practically living with my mother as I fought to regain both my health & my sanity. I eventually came to the point where I absolutely could not stand to be alone so that I would take myself to the movies just to get out & find a crowd. There are many reasons in all of this that led to the decisions that would forever alter my life, but the short truth was that everything about me changed in that time. I came on the other side of it with the intent to stop holding everyone else back and start over. At first, I thought that meant I would have to continue to stay away from my kids, but meeting Ray changed all that. I was still beyond fragile, but for the first time in my life, I felt like I had someone who would truly fight for me, or at least root for me to do what was necessary for self-improvement.

Long story short, I worry that I am over-determined now. I feel as lost as ever in many areas, some even more so. I have far more to try & balance now, but I am always trying, hoping I am fighting for the right things and not the wrong ones… making up for lost time, grabbing onto what precious little time I have come to realize the 18 years my kids have with me really is, fighting to remember every single moment & to share those with everyone I believe has actually chosen to spend my life with me vs fighting for the kids’ affections with other parents who get to have the fun side of life, or grandparents who will buy them whatever they want while I get to be poor, the disciplinarian, etc.

In all that, I wonder, am I seeming (or even actually being) wrongfully prideful to do things like show off pictures of my kids? Capturing every moment I can is after all one thing, while sharing them is another. Is it wrong to be proud of the people you love like that? I mean, c’mon, even God pulled the whole, “this is my beloved son”/sky opening/halo of light/dove descending thing, right?

I don’t know about any of it. All I do know is that I survived. And I’m finally ready to more than just that. I wanna thrive, too! And my kids are a huge part of that. They are the ones I do it for… Anyone with me?

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

To Cover or Not to Cover?

There's this HUGE controversy over on a blog I read because a mother posted a pic of her breast-feeding baby as a contest submission. I don't normally speak out on the issue for my own mixed feelings, and I started to comment with my feelings only to realize it was better suited for a blog. So while no one will read this, here we go ;)

"I didn't notice anything until everyone started going on about it, and you shouldn't BECAUSE it's natural. I take pics like this for myself to remember. I don't post them anywhere because I don't want someone I can't even see ogling me & turning what isn't normally INTO something sexual, but she gets to if she is not so self-conscious. I HATE that I am & wasn't one bit in the beginning (this is my third). My hospital experience made me feel it was natural. It was jerks who changed that for me. If you want us to inconvenience our children because you're immature, then make us more private places where it doesn't matter. We shouldn't have to have our kids scream in hunger for a long time before we can find a proper place (or get stuck in dirty bathrooms- which is more likely!), resort to bottle-feeding when we don't want to, or subject summer babies to the heat of having to be covered to eat because of absolute strangers who can't keep their eyes & opinions to themselves. Breast-feeding can be difficult for many mothers enough as it is! My child would have never seen a bottle if a) he didn't have complications that kept him away from me in the hospital & b) my step-daughters would actually be educated about the process by someone a lot closer to them(I am too scared to take on that role when I don't feel allowed to take on any other maternal sort of role & as a result tend to hide what I am doing to stave off their curiosity/questions). As for those who REALLY feel ONLY babies & loveys should be in pics, extend censorship to pacifiers, bottles & any equipment/effects that would remove focus on the objects in question as well!"

Friday, February 4, 2011