Wednesday, October 28, 2009

poker and motherhood are related

At least for me they are.

See I refuse to even learn how to play poker because I'm not naturally good at card games and I hate feeling like an idiot as I try to learn. Messing up over and over again in front of a group of people makes my pride take over and I become frustrated and angry. In fact, I become angry if people decide to play the game at a party I'm attending because they are automatically being exclusive. (Even if really they're inclusive and I'm the one refusing to join.)

I'm like this about a lot of things - if I can't do it well then I'm just not going to do it. Video games, math, cutting a pineapple and basketball all fall in this category.

And even though I'm doing it, mothering babies happens to be in this category, too. All day long I just keep messing up as I try to figure out the best way of doing things. The crying and the whining seem to never stop, especially at nap time. I can't even breastfeed my baby without drowning him (literally). There are several moments of every day where I just want to throw in the towel, go back to work and send the kids to daycare - to the arms of someone who knows what she's doing. I feel like a failure at the one thing I ever wanted to do with my life, and I feel ridiculous for thinking I would be good at it.

And then, of course, there are the sections of the day that go well. I nurse Bennet down for a long nap and then feed Lydia a healthy lunch and read her books. Or we get out of the house without a meltdown or tantrum and we arrive at our destination only 5 minutes late. And always there is the fact that I want to be the one who teaches Lydia the words to Old McDonald (you should hear her do the "e-i-e-i-o" part!) and who sees Bennet roll over for the first time - not a babysitter.

The point of this post... The back and forth of my competency is exhausting and right now the former seems to be winning. But I'm pretty sure I can't give in because I'm much better with toddlers and children than I am with babies, and why work for just a very short time.

Friday, October 23, 2009

I know, I know

My amazing children:

Bennet is no longer a newborn - he is now 7 weeks old, weighs 13lbs and is in size 2 diapers. Lydia, at almost 18months, weights 26lbs and is in a size 3 diaper.

Bennet has smiled and it's a very handsome smile indeed.

He continues to sleep very well at night, though his napping has become less great.

When I am mad I say "Damn it." When I am very mad I usually roar "This f***ing sucks!" Lydia has learned the first, I am so ashamed to admit. Thankfully I am not furious everyday (maybe once a week) and so she hasn't learned the latter expression. Believe me, I've talked about the anger and foul language with my spiritual director and have confessed it many, many times. I'm working on them.

The only good that I can find in my daughter's swearing is that she uses the phrase at the appropriate time, such as when she can't get her shoe on or has just fallen off the ottoman. I try to correct her to say "Darn it" but inside I'm amazed at how smart she is.

And lastly, Lydia has a baby doll that she takes care of when I'm taking care of Bennet. She puts it on the potty, changes its diaper, gives it a bottle and carries it around. However, what I especially love is that she will hold it to her chest and say "nurse" or hold the doll at her shoulder and say, "I know, I know" while patting its back. She has even put the nail clippers to its toenails. She is so cute and so smart!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

that guilty mom feeling

Many times throughout the day I let the swing "mother" Bennet. I use it to hold him when I have to tend to Lydia and to lull him to sleep when I've had enough. Of course I still hold him, bounce him and give him tummy time, but he spends a lot of time in the swing.

Right now he's in it, napping. I was trying to put him down myself but Lydia was tired too, and that meant she was loud, whining, trying to climb on me and overall driving me crazy. So I finally just put him in the swing and tended to Lydia. And as she fell asleep in my arms I watched him and felt bad that he gets set aside a lot for her because it makes my life easier.

It makes me feel a little bit better that I can identify that part of my guilt comes from all the attachment parenting reading I did with Lydia. Too bad I agree with a lot of what they say, I just find that it stresses me out to try to practice it in my life.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

this is blog worthy

Today I went grocery shopping with my two kids. Just. the. three. of. us. And no one cried. That alone is worthy of a victory chant.

Today I also went to spiritual direction for the first time since Bennet's birth. I had a good confession, compared the Virgin Mary to the mother of the 4 week old who's wearing her pre-pregnancy jeans, and was affirmed in my thought that circ* is not against the teaching of the Catholic Church, despite what various people tried to convince me of.

I also made my husband incredibly happy by saying I wanted homemade pizza for supper.

Tomorrow I'm off to LLL where I hope to find out that Bennet and I do not have thrush. Fingers crossed.

PS Happy Birthday Doug and Stephani! And Happy Anniversary! Love to you both. :)

* edited June 2010 due to my discomfort in the large number of people who find my blog by googling a certain Jewish tradition for baby boys.  Most of these people come from sources I am uncomfortable with.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Yesterday I was holding Lydia as she napped. My cell phone, which was in the pocket of my jacket, began to ring but since she was on it I couldn't get to it. When it finished ringing she woke up, pushed herself off my chest, looked at me with big eyes and said, "Phone." She then laid back down and went back to sleep.

She is too cute.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Let's discuss this amongst ourselves

Last time I met with my spiritual director we talked about my relationship with the Person of Christ and I was told to continue to ponder it until we meet again. And here's why: I don't really have one. I used to, but not any more.

I'm sure this sounds horrible to hear from a self-proclaimed "devout Catholic", or maybe it proves everything you've ever thought about us Catholics. ;) Before I got married, though, I had a great relationship with Christ. I fully understood him as my Bridegroom and I was in love. Prayer was easy and Adoration was a joy - seeing Him face to Face. I read Song of Songs with Him in mind and every Mass was a reminder of the Wedding Feast of the Lamb. But then, well, I suppose He got replaced. (Doesn't that sound horrible?) Slowly we drifted away since I now had a Bridegroom in the flesh and I wasn't quite sure how to have that kind of relationship with two men. I'm still not sure.

Today in my life I revere Christ as Savior and King. I worship our Eucharistic Lord. I still see Him as a great comfort and I pray to be hidden within His wounds, the Fount of His Mercy. And I love Him in these ways, some of which are quite personal, yet as Friend, Lover, every day Companion there is something lacking.

But here's the thing, I actually feel like I have a great relationship with God the Father, and I'm quite drawn to God the Spirit. So the way I see it, I'm still doing okay with God. I think it's because at this point in my life I identify with Father more as motherhood has shown me how frustrating it must be to be God. Motherhood has made me understand Childhood. And I call on the Holy Spirit much more now than I ever have in the past.

So is this just a phase? Will I "return" to Christ as my Main Man?

And what about you? Have you noticed a similar change in your spiritual life? And do you have any tips or ideas for me?