crying in three's


i sit here with a glass of red wine in one hand as i type with the other. it takes more skill than i had previously thought but somehow, i know i'll manage. i have all of these thoughts rambling through my mind and if they don't get out of my head, i may find myself drinking the entire bottle while eating the hidden stash of chocolate truffles buried in the back of the fridge. it won't be a pretty sight. so...

i've written eight articles about my postpartum depression in a little over two weeks. it has drained me emotionally. i wasn't prepared for how taxing it would be on me, to revisit those memories- and in some cases, to be made even more aware of the lack thereof. but it was and it was incredibly painful. so painful. and raw. i thought i had healed in so many ways but the wounds are still very fresh. i also hadn't realized just how much i'd suppressed of those early months. but it poured out of me onto the screen and i had proof that it was always there, i just chose not to remind myself of it. today, all of the recovered memories of inadequacy and painfully anxious thoughts came to a raging boil. my cup runneth over.

and i cried. a few times, in fact. three times today i cried hard and i cried for what felt like hours but were really only mere minutes. that's my default response, i've discovered. i do it well and it always serves me well. truthfully, i've regretted a lot of responses but i've never regretted crying.

what has cut me the deepest through writing these articles is the reality of how much i truly missed while i was in that dark abyss of the deeper side of my depression. i have to look at pictures to even remotely recall certain qualities about my kid and that bothers me on a level that i won't describe out of embarrassment.

the truth is that i had very high expectations for myself as a mother. i knew i'd kick motherhood's ass. surely, i never aspired to be that mom that couldn't remember what it felt like to bring her baby home from the hospital or what it felt like to watch her husband hold their baby for the first time. i can't tell you because i don't remember.

however, my reality is that i am that mom and it's something i can't change. all i can do is be better. and do better. and keep kicking the parts of motherhood's ass that are within my reach. or so i keep telling myself.

(le sigh. damn, this wine is good.)

marlo also chose this particular day to be an asshole. it doesn't usually require a great deal of effort to remind myself why i love being a mom, but, today it did. today was a day that necessitated a lot of effort to not lose it; it being my mind. it demanded a lot of deep breathing and patience that continually came up short. it was one of those days.

and so... i cried.

after marlo had been rocked to sleep in my arms and i was just sitting down to write yet another article, i stumbled on the picture above. marlo took it along with eighty-six other selfies of her toes and the inside of her nose.

and then i cried. (that's cry number three in case you're keeping track.)

i may not have memories of those early months and i can't change that. but what i do have are ten chubby toes with six pink toenails because she wouldn't sit still for the last four to be painted. i have two chunky legs that take her wherever she desires to go and a pair of arms that want to wrap themselves around me every chance they get. i have a tiny pair of lips that cover my face with slobbery puckered kisses all throughout the day. what i have is a healthy and beautiful little girl who is becoming a strong-willed, curious, endlessly funny, little asshole.

so, i'm going to drink another glass of this red wine because i am really enjoying what it's doing for me and i'm going to declare this day done and remember that tomorrow is a new one.


miss verse said...

And then you made me cry! But don't worry it's good. That really spoke to me. Thank you for writing it. I really admire you lady- you have lots if strength even when it doesn't always feel that way. 💕

Chelsea Mac said...

This motherhood thing is tough; we are our own worst critics, but it's a wonderful endeavor to be better and do better regardless how how good you are - and you have you know, you are really good :)

SRO said...

So, so good. I needed to read this today.


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