Stayed up too late last night [not by choice, I couldn’t sleep. My new sleep aid kicked my ass and I couldn’t wake up yesterday until the kids were screaming their heads off. That’d wake the dead!] It was, I dunno, after one a.m. for sure, but maybe later. After it gets so late, I stop looking at the clock.
We had to meet Steve’s brother at ten this morning, so we all got up around seven. Which is five or six hours of sleep, but for me, that’s not even close to enough. I do okay as long as I keep moving [which we did nonstop today] but the second I sit down, I’m toast [like now].
We did a brief celebration of Shaya’s birthday, which is tomorrow [the 25th]. She’ll be eight years old. It’s hard to believe I’ve been a mom for eight years now. This time eight years ago, I was in labor with my first baby! That’s so weird.
She’s growing into such a beautiful young lady, both inside and out. I’m always so excited when she shows a bit of personality that is just cool on her own, you know? Like when she makes a joke that’s funny it’s pretty hit and miss with her and Matthew. They’re into knock knock jokes, which I hate. They don’t understand how to make a play on words, so it’s just stuff like,
“You better eat your food before it gets cold.”
Yeah, after about twelve of those during dinner, I’m about ready to start throwing things. We have to make a no knock knock rule sometimes [don’t tell them in front of mom, she’ll have a cow.]
But I love my baby girl [I love Matthew and Michaela too, but you know, this is about my eldest child].
I didn’t get to enjoy Shaya’s babyhood much because I had horrible postpartum depression. I had a very difficult pregnancy [maybe I’ll share when I have more energy. I dunno if anyone is interested, but sometimes this blog is therapy, and there are still things that are hard to deal with about all of my pregnancies. The kids were worth every bad thing that happened, but being pregnant, for me, is some kind of special hell all its own].
So anyway, about a week after Shaya was born, I couldn’t function. It was so bad, we had to live with my parents so my mom could help take care of her. I would have visions of throwing her against a wall, and other things that no mother ever thinks will go through her mind about her own flesh and blood.
I think maybe I understand a little too well how a mother can get so desperate that she does something awful. I honestly don’t know what I would have done if my parents hadn’t been able to help. My depression lasted for almost three years. I was able to function again after Shaya was three months old or so. We moved back home, and I managed, but my depression stayed pretty bad until after Matthew was born and I finally got some medicine.
I had tried Prozac right after Shaya was born, but it made my heart skip, and for whatever reason, the doctor wouldn’t try another antidepressant. He wanted to refer me to a psychiatrist, but I didn’t want to go, so I muddled through on my own.
If I could do it all over again, I wouldn’t wait to see a psychiatrist. I needed medication, and I needed therapy, and I didn’t get either. Shaya doesn’t know that she didn’t get my best, but I do, and I feel guilty about it sometimes.
But then, I feel guilty about my shortcomings a lot. I love my kids so much, and I feel like they deserve better than what I can give them. I’m not abusive, but I yell sometimes, and I get frustrated and angry. I always wanted to be one of those moms who stayed calm under every circumstance, never yelled, and always used ‘teaching moments’ [I think of Marmee from Little Women].
The reality is, I’m not calm most of the time [never thought of the fact that I’m a freaking spaz in good circumstances. Add the stress of raising a family, and it’s no wonder I freak out sometimes.] I still want to be, and I’m working towards it, but I’m not even close yet.
So anyway, my baby’s gonna be eight tomorrow, and I’m so very proud of her. She’s a neat kid, and I’m excited to see who she’ll be when she grows up.