As a type “A” planner, I am currently sitting and looking at my calendar for the past four months thinking, “Where.Did.That.Time.Go.” My blogging agenda notebook is wide open on my desk, with each Tuesday and Thursday topic highlighted in perfectly coordinating washi tape. Here’s what:
The blog posts range from book reviews, to baby product must haves, to a chocolate chip cookie recipe that took me three weeks to perfect. So many things I wanted to already have shared with you. But guess what? There have been so many nights in the past seven months that I lie awake at night thinking about when I would get back into the swing of things, and it just didn’t happen. “Tomorrow. Tomorrow I’ll take an hour when she naps and I will write.” But I didn’t. I took a shower instead. I read another book on how to get your baby to stop being awake every 45 minutes at night. I researched ways to boost my breast milk production. I googled “sleep disorders in six month old babies” no less than fifty times. I lesson planned. I folded laundry so my husband would have clean work shirts. I picked up her toys…again. I learned tricks to get baby poop out of a white bed sheet.
I have been learning how to be this new version of myself that I wasn’t really prepared to meet.
Being a full time teacher is hard. Marriage is work–even though I think mine is 99% fun, 1% work. (#blessed) Blogging and editing can be tough. Being a mom? This is the hardest thing I have ever done.
It’s not because I’m running blind plays. In all honesty, we have a really great routine with Virginia.
It’s not because I’m doing it alone. I happen to have married an amazing human being who isn’t just my best friend, but is the world’s most amazing father to our child. No seriously, I should devote an entire blog post to how stinking cute Matt dancing to “Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride” like a dingus is just to make Virginia laugh.
It’s not because my job is stressful.
It isn’t because I have postpartum.
But seriously ya’ll…this Mama has been TIRED.
And birthing this new Jordan has been HARD.
I honestly contemplated closing my blog. Packing in the digital files, not renewing my URL, and moving back to just keeping a journal for myself.
Then I got an email from one of you lovely readers asking what baby carrier we are using and loving and I realized…I missed this.
Blogging has always been a solid hour of me time. No distractions. No papers to grade. No questions to answer. Nothing but my thoughts, my opinions, and my fun.
At a time when it seems like I go from being “Mrs. Leonard” to my students, to being “Mama” to our daughter, to “House Cleaning Robot” I realized I stopped being Jordan.
The things that I used to have so much joy in taking time to do, were gone.
It isn’t my daughter’s fault, or my husband’s. It’s mine.
You see, I have been so wrapped up in trying to be the wife that I was before Virginia, while being the teacher I’ve always wanted to be for my kids, in addition to the mom I want to be to Virginia that there hasn’t been any room for the ME that I need to be for myself.
I don’t think it really hit me until about a week ago just how different my life really was. I was standing in my living room, tears running down my face, when I finally took stock and realized that I forgot what it was like to make myself a priority. Aside from the occasional soak in the tub and one girls night out with my best friend–I’ve been spending 24 hours a day taking care of everyone else and their needs…but not mine.
I’ve drafted this post about seven times. I thought it sounds whiny to say, “ugh poor me I am so tired and overstretched I can’t take care of myself.” when there are single mothers doing way more with way less support. I have a friend who literally gave birth to her third child while her husband was overseas in the military–and killed it. I know moms who have suffered immense losses while learning how to be a parent. I’m not writing this for your pity. I’m not writing this to make myself feel better. I often pride myself on not being censored with this blog. The good, the bad, and the ugly usually ends up on this page. Because life is messy. We are all flawed. And sometimes a natural childbirth just isn’t worth the life sentence for murdering your spouse.
I’m finally feeling balanced again. There’s more to the big “why” (spoiler alert, we hired a sleep consultant) later, but I’m back. For real this time.