Wild Moon Swings

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Maybe Motherhood

Today I read something about a woman who wanted to have a baby.

Maybe my motherhood was stinted because I don't think I ever really craved motherhood. When I found out I was pregnant the first time, I was excited ... for about three days. Then the violent morning sickness set in and it became a matter of survival. It's hard to rake up excitement over cute baby sleepers when you're trying to get stomach acid out of your nose.

Forget labour and delivery - I knew that motherhood was going to be a lot work. But 'a lot of work' didn't really figure into my vocabulary no matter what I was told. I've always been crappy at listening to instructions, so the words "You will never get adequate sleep again" didn't exactly penetrate my consciousness. So I was warned about some things, but not others. Like for instance, how after buying three things for each of your kids, either to feed them, clothe them, educate them, entertain them, protect them, commemorate them, or to keep them warm - you feel like spending $3 on yourself is outside your budget.

After taking care of the basic needs of my children, I feel this insane pressure to help educate them - which would be an easier process if they didn't both have speech delays ... and if I was good at talking to children, which I'm not. I try, but I suck. So, I feel guilty, powerless, and reliant on others to help my kids through their crisis'. In short - frustrated.

It's not really as bad as I'm painting it. It's a quirky job, and like everyone else, I've had my lucky breaks and my moments of grueling agony.

So, I wonder why my expectations were so low. Is it because it didn't look like my mother was having any fun? And it wasn't just my mother. Most mothers didn't look like they were having any fun. The young ones looked sleep deprived and much worse for wear after I'd seen them as vibrant teenagers who'd had their pink cheeks drained by midnight hours of soothing a crying baby. The ones with older kids looked desperate to get away (and I know, because I was babysitting their kids as they were making for the door). The ones with teenagers had lost their sense of humour after countless hours of fending off B.S. And the ones with grown up kids had their hearts broken by delinquent kids who joined the mob, became strippers - slight exaggeration - but basically threw whatever their parents taught them in their faces. So, it looks like a non-fun job. But I always knew I'd tackle it.

I wonder if my attitude was wrong. I think if my hopes had been much higher - I would be heartbroken now considering all the frustration I face on a daily basis. Yet ... if someone has those dreams, I would say that they are probably the most valuable thoughts a woman could ever have.