Archived entries for just words

Resurfacing

I’m alive! My blog is not. I was struggling to keep up with even before having a baby and, well, after this just wasn’t high on my priority list. That and taking care of a newborn is pretty much a full time job. Even now, almost 4 months later there are still days when I don’t get much done other than feed, change, and nap him.

One thing that I struggled with before was having material to write about. I had (and still have) photos to post but that was about it. Now I have the whole world of mommyblogging to explore. But I’m not going to. I had started to lean this way even before I had my son but since then I have decided that I am not interested in putting that much information out there. I’ve even made my Instagram private so that I have a reasonable idea of who sees his photos. It’s not just my story that I would be sharing and I feel very protective of my son and his photos.

This isn’t to say that I won’t ever be writing about being a parent, or never mentioning my son. I’m just not going to be posting many, if any, pictures, or going into much detail about anything. The internet is forever. Whenever he’s old enough, he can decide what sort of digital footprint to leave.

So. What’s next? Now that we’ve started to sort of fall into a routine (and we’ve mostly moved past the every two hour feeds!) I’m looking for online/work from home positions. We would love for our next move to be into our own house and some extra income would help with saving for a down payment. That, and I would like to work. Some. A little bit. I may have found something that, on paper, sounds exactly like what I’m looking for but I’m still in the application process. If it works out, I’ll actually be sitting down with my laptop more and may end up writing somewhat more frequently. Well, more than once every four months!

What’s right

This is something that I’ve been thinking about for some time. Learning about different parenting styles and methods has only furthered this internal discussion though it applies to many, many other things. By asking “What’s right?” I’m not referring to what is or isn’t morally right. I’m asking “What is the best thing that I can do for me and my family?” As is often the case when searching out opinions and advice on topics people have very strong feelings about, things often get very heated very quickly. There are as many opinions as there are people in the world. It’s rare that you will find two people who will agree 100% on every single thing. I have a feeling that most of the arguing stems from two things that are basically different sides of the same coin: 1) What is right for me is not right for everyone else and 2) What is right for someone else may not be right for me.

What is right for me is not right for everyone else. Just because a particular method or action works for me or works for my family does not mean that it is a good fit for everyone else. Someone, maybe, but not everyone. For example, for the last few months I’ve been working to build better housekeeping habits. Not because I just love cleaning house but because it’s something that needs to be done and for now it’s my job to do it. I’ve discovered a lot of tips and basic coping methods that help me get things done. Do I run around telling people that they are failures unless they do things the same way? No. If the topic comes up with someone else I try to phrase my advice in terms of “This is what helped me, maybe this will work out for you, too. If it doesn’t I won’t be offended.” There is no point to trying to force my ideas or methods on someone else because I understand that not everyone is the same. They need to find their own way; all I can do is try to help and to be as understanding as possible.

What is right for someone else may not be right for me. So what happens when people fail to realize that their way is not the only right way? You end up with people trying to shove their methods and beliefs on you. They have found some thing or believe in one thing that they feel should apply to everyone and so they speak and act as if this is the only “right” way to act. They either can’t or refuse to see that just because something works for them, in their life, it doesn’t mean that I or anyone else will be happy doing the same things. This applies to everything: lifestyle, eating habits, relationships, parenting, religion, depression, the list goes on.

I think the problem boils down to a complete and utter lack of empathy. It seems impossible for most people to put themselves in another person’s position. If someone doesn’t believe or do exactly as they would have in the same situation they don’t allow for the fact that the other person has lived a life entirely different from theirs, experiencing different things and influenced by factors that an outsider couldn’t possibly wholly understand. No, the other person is simply “wrong” because they are not the same. Not only do attitudes like this show a lack of empathy but they also show an overabundance of arrogance. Why should your way be any better than theirs? Why are your experiences any more valid?

Different does not mean wrong. Different doesn’t mean the end of the world. Stop acting like it does.

A little navelgazing

Obviously I didn’t make a New Year’s Resolution to write more for the blog. I’ve started up several posts on Issues but I haven’t been able to fully hash them out or maybe I just don’t have the words yet to fully articulate my thoughts. While that’s all very frustrating I realized that I haven’t actually sat down and wrote much of anything about this pregnancy or how I’m doing so I’m allowing myself to do just that.

First trimester wrap-up! So far as actual pregnancy related issues I didn’t have many. I was (and still am) feeling sick at the thought of preparing or eating most meat. It wasn’t something I particularly enjoyed before getting pregnant so I’m not surprised. It’s just now I’m having to work extra hard to get enough protein and iron. Morning sickness? Not an issue (knock on wood). I know a few other gals who are due the same month as me and a couple of them have needed medication and IV fluids because of their extreme morning sickness. No, I got “lucky” in that I only had a 24 hour GI flu the week after Thanksgiving and then getting the for real influenza type a the week of Christmas. I should have gotten a flu shot in the fall but I’ve never ever had one so I was pretty ambivalent. Then at my first OB appointment at 8 weeks they said I should wait until 12 weeks to get one. Wouldn’t you know, 10 weeks in, BOOM, got the flu. Other than that (which was horrible), sore boobs, and feeling tired and needing to take naps (something I almost never do), I had it pretty easy.

Oh right, first appointment. Everything was pretty routine. I did have somewhat of an issue with my doctor not reviewing my chart before seeing me because one of the first things she mentioned was that I didn’t need any assistance to achieve this pregnancy. I know I had only seen her in person once before but we’ve talked on the phone multiple times since and she’s signed multiple prescriptions for me. I know doctors are busy but that irked me. Following the exam we went to the ultrasound room and got to see one little baby with a flickering heartbeat on the screen. Seeing that there was, in fact, a heartbeat was the biggest relief. The second was seeing that it wasn’t twins. I knew going in that it was a rather high probability and I wouldn’t have been upset if it were. I know know that a) pregnancy with twins is more difficult and b) raising twins is more difficult, in a way that having multiple children isn’t. First hand experience growing up as a twin, remember? Continue reading…

Writer’s block

It’s not that I’m having a real block. I’ve been writing. I’ve been writing lots of things it’s just that as I come close to wrapping a post up, or even when getting to the heart of the story I keep having major episodes of second guessing myself. Why? I’ve come to realize that certain things that I had guessed a few weeks ago were actually true.

I am no stranger to the internet. I am perfectly aware that my blog and twitter account aren’t protected. Anyone can read them. I am also keenly aware that my views and opinions differ greatly from those of many people who know me. That’s one of the reasons why I’ve hesitated to be more open about sharing this site with them. Funny enough, my site is on my Facebook profile. Just this one. Finding my twitter requires some digging, more so now that I’ve been working on the layout here. I never tried to hide it and I’m not ashamed of anything I’ve written. I just don’t want to stir the pot. (Don’t even ask me about how hard it was not to post anything on Facebook during the circus that was the 2012 election.)

But, I still feel the same way I did a few weeks ago. I don’t want to stop writing, I don’t want to shut this blog down and move and I don’t want to feel like I’ve been chased out of the safe space that was my twitter. I also don’t want to feel like I can’t write about the things I’d like to just so that other people continue to feel good about themselves. But. BUT. The judging. It’s one thing to know that it’s a possibility that people are talking about you. It’s another thing entirely to know for certain that they are. And that some of those selfsame people might be reading this and recognizing themselves in the words I write and will take exception to it.

On the other hand, I have some close friends who I trust very much telling me that I’m not a terrible person, that I’m kind and reasonable and mostly rational. I say mostly because I have been having fangirl moments. (I regret nothing.) I say this to point out that I haven’t lost touch with reality. I’m not a hateful person and I haven’t been writing hateful or spiteful things. Sometimes frustration creeps out, yes, but I am only human.

Writing this hasn’t helped me reach any conclusions but well, what else is new? I’m not giving up yet.

The quandary

It’s currently 3:39 AM where I am and I cannot sleep. Probably not the best time to write but what can you do.

There’s lots of things I’ve thought about writing for this site and I really have been meaning to, especially if I want to keep up with my Ink Rally goals. Which I do. It’s just that this is a holiday week in the US and that means less free time at home and more time on the road and with family.

Which brings me to one of those things. Sometimes lately I get the idea that it would be awesome to link my blog up to my personal Facebook. (I don’t have a site page set up. I can’t decide if it’s worth it after the changes Facebook has recently made to how pages work. ) One of the main reasons is that I don’t upload much of any of my photos to Facebook other than the odd Instagram. It’s not that I don’t want people to see them I just really hate the compression that happens and I just don’t like having my photos on Facebook. I have many conflicting feelings about that site but I can’t seem to do without it because I live so far away from so many people. It’s a pickle.

So like my pumpkin patch and carving photos? I wouldn’t mind posting that so that extended family could see what we’ve been up to. But then. THEN. I remember what happened last time I shared my blog and some photos on Facebook where those same people could see them. In very few words, it was disastrous because they Did Not Approve. The fact that this was well over three years ago? Doesn’t matter. I still feel like I can’t talk about the details because there was such a lack of understanding on their part and huge sense of betrayal felt by yours truly that I’m not really joking when I say I could probably use a therapist to sort it all out.

What would you do if there was a hobby of yours that you just immensely loved and felt like it was an integral part of your identity HOWEVER when your family saw you exploring your hobby and trying new things and instead of encouraging you and being excited for you they respond with judgment and concern but not really concern for you, the kind of concern that shows they’re really just thinking about themselves?

Holy run-on. That’s not even all of it, really. Just the bones. The thing is I’ve got a feeling that maybe a few family members do know about my blog and read it occasionally. I really, really do not want a confrontation. I’m not ready for that again. See? I can’t even talk about the problem without feeling like I’m doing something wrong when I don’t feel like I was the one who did anything!

I’ve looked at my options. I could try to conform to their expectations. I could abandon this site and start over, attempting anonymity. I could just stop doing any sort of blogging. All of those options suck. Each one would mean that I am trying to change or hide something about myself that I’m not ashamed about but am actually rather proud of. I’ve had other people express their incredulity over what happened and I KNOW I’m not crazy. It is simply not fair to feel like I need to hide something that is not bad at all.

But then I remember what did happen, so I don’t share my posts and I continually fret over why I feel like I can’t. I know that most people would say forget them, do what you want. That’s easy to say, especially on the internet. This is the intersection of real life and the internet and that is something else. Maybe someday I’ll be able to feel like none of it matters and I can post and share whatever I like. Until then, round and round I’ll go.


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