In Like a Lion…

I have been mentally preparing for this month for awhile now, but it is still hitting me. Last March, my life changed in so many ways. Some amazing (I have an awesome baby) and some terrible (my body fell apart and I was forced to stop working). I like to describe it as a rainbow of emotions. Really extreme feelings of very good and very bad.

Between planning Dylan’s birthday party and seeing Rosetti bags that I had no part in designing, a lot has been on my mind. I can’t stop thinking how different things were a year ago. I was having a great pregnancy and I had a job I loved. We were preparing for our baby to be born – we hadn’t even decided on a name! His room was still a knotty pine covered tree trunk. I had just painstakingly finished the baby registry. Then everything changed so drastically and so quickly…how do you even prepare for all of that?

Over the year, we have been through so so so much. Some great and some absolutely terrible. And we are currently approaching the anniversary of the start of it all. I can’t stop thinking about our time in the NICU and how upset I was to even be there, not having any idea how much worse things were going to get for me/us. Which then leads me to think about the time I spent in the hospital with Dylan in the building next to me, but not being able to see him, hold him, or care for him. (THANK GOD St. Peters Nicu has that amazing video system. I would sit in my bed, watching him. Waiting for him to wake up and move even a little bit. It kept me close to him when I couldn’t be there.) I had to keep telling myself that this was only for a short time and that he won’t know I wasn’t there…but man was it frustrating. Now, I think I’ve more than made up for that brief abandonment. I spent all day, everyday chasing him around and wiping his butt.

And then there’s the work aspect. This time last year, I found out I was going to be promoted. I was taking on more responsibility and loving it! I loved the people I worked with – I mean, I worked a few desks down from my very best friend from college! I was definitely concerned about how I would feel about working so far away from home after the baby was born, but I figured I would decide after I gave working a shot. And I know now it would have gutted me – I am so happy that I get to see Dylan grow! I know I would have missed so much – I would have seen him for maybe an hour a day. So while I’m happy I’m at home, I am also a little nostalgic about the life I had planned.

But can we get real? being at a SAHM is WEIRD. I miss talking to people and working on tangible things. There is nothing worse than thinking I can do even a few basic tasks and getting NONE of them done. A tiny person is my boss. And with it being so cold outside, there are many weeks when I don’t leave the house for days at a time – AND I don’t even realize it until about the fourth day! Cabin fever is hitting me HARD.

I think it also doesn’t help that last week Dylan transitioned to one nap a day. We had such a good schedule, it was nice to have the naptime to break up the day and give me time to rest/get stuff done. Now with one nap a day – and a baby that is on the move! – I am exhausted by the end of the day. Thus only one blog post last week.

How do you stop yourself from feeling all dark and twisty about this stuff? How do we celebrate our son’s first birthday without thinking about all of the bad stuff that came with it? And usually, I can focus on the positive stuff pretty easily. (That perfect, happy, smiley, HEALTHY baby usually makes that pretty easy.) But something about March is just making it really hard.

I know the people that read this are mostly my friends and family, and I am sorry that most of you are probably crying at this point (like I am). You all have been so incredibly strong and kind. We have relied on all of you so much and we are so blessed with people in our life. We can’t thank you enough, but I had to put this out into the universe in hopes that maybe it will give me some relief. And a tiny part of me hopes someone out there in internet land reads this and can relate. I know birth complications are not uncommon and there are many people that I’m sure feel the same way leading up to their child’s first birthday.

This has all made me think of the saying that goes with March. In like a Lion, out like a Lamb. I’m hoping that all of these feelings I’m having can sort themselves out and by the end of the month, we can focus on the good. I’m planning to focus on Dylan’s birthday party as a release. Ironically, his party is on my birthday! (Yea…I spent my last birthday in a hospital bed) I’m looking at this birthday as a new leaf. A year has finally passed and I can begin to shake off some of those lingering feelings……hopefully.

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3 Comment

  1. Robin says: Reply

    I do this a lot, turn the past into idilic pictures that can never be rivaled by the messy minutia of today. I am someone who struggles to reconcile the past with the present, even though I know little good can come from constantly looking in the rearview mirror. Walking against the earth’s rotation won’t stop time from moving forward and by focusing solely on my yesterdays, I’ll always be distracted by what’s being left behind.

    My rational brain tells me that in order to find balance and happiness I must also be aware of what’s around me and in front of me. I will never be content if I’m constantly yearning for something that’s gone and I have to accept my losses and the ways in which life must change. I know all this to be true, but my emotional brain still says, “…that sucks.”

    When my entire family recently found themselves under the same roof at the Jersey shore. I looked around the dining table I realized we felt small, fractured and not entirely whole. With food on the table, good health, how could I possibly focus on what’s wrong as opposed to what’s right? Am I defective because no matter how beautiful the song, I will struggle to appreciate it because a few voices are missing?

    I don’t know.

    When you feel like something irreplaceable is gone, it’s really hard not to look back and lament what was. It’s hard to accept that certain moments, feelings, people and realities will always feel like a dream. These memories are just out of your reach and too far away for you to clearly see; sometimes you may wonder if they were ever even real. It’s sad that these things are gone and no one can tell you this sadness isn’t valid or worth being felt, because it absolutely is.

    But as I sit here I alternate between the vision of someone grieving the past and losing themselves bit by bit, and the vision of someone growing more and more complete as they use both the pieces of the past and the present to construct a new sense of self, family and purpose. Although these two ‘selves’ seem a direct contradiction of one another, I realize we have the capacity to be both at the same time and that it’s normal to mourn the past while still being aware and appreciative of the present and the future.

    I know it’s been a struggle, but that smile on both of your faces, Rob too tells me we’re all doing okay. You are amazing Kim.

    1. Kim says: Reply

      Thank you so much for this. You put it so perfectly. I think my current goal has been to try and keep my past self and present self a little more connected. To try not to see it as two halves. It definitely gets tough when I’m feeling overwhelmed with mom-life, but the blog has helped. It gives me a creative outlet – something for myself instead of just being all mom all the time. What you wrote will stay with me, it was beautifully put. Xoxox

  2. Robin says: Reply

    xoxo!

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