Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A Few Things I Can't Control

I am a control freak... There, I said it. I like things the way I like them. I have a schedule and a list and I do not like to deviate from that schedule. The past few weeks have been oh-so-humbling. I still have to maintain some measure of control to feel good about myself, but here are some of the areas in which I stuggle:

1.) My Body: Even if I had the time to go like I used to (which I do not--40 minutes for a treadmill run is all I've got), my favorite home away from home has now become a depressing place. Since the roads are now iced, I have no choice but to run on the treadmill at my gym--and they face mirrors. So I have to face myself (or the fat person masquerading as me) everyday. I know it is silly to care, but I feel like people are looking at me and feeling sorry for me. And for the first time, I understand the overweight people who talk about how difficult it is to go to the gym. I now understand that the gym is full of fit and trim people who give you weird looks when you are neither of those things. At least 30 times a visit, I have to remind myself I gave birth three weeks ago. I am thinking of printing it on a t-shirt.

2.) How Long Things Will Take: So I am an impatient perfectionist who wants everything yesterday. I am trying to not be too hard on myself, but the mothers in my new mothers group said last Friday that we should all expect it to take a year to get the weight off. A YEAR. I know I am dwelling, but how can I look like this (and wear none of my old clothes) for a YEAR. Further, my job situation is also in limbo. I am not at all certain of where I will be in eight weeks and my maternity leave is going far faster than I anticipated.

3.) My Fear: This is the worst. When I look at Samara, I am struck by the most love and the most fear I have ever experienced. Is she breathing right? Is the sling a death trap? Will she fall out of the stroller? Get sick? Lose a limb? When we were walking the other day, a biker went by about 10 feet from her. I flinched and went to grab her. He was TEN FEET AWAY. I know all parents feel this to some extent. We talked about this in my new mother's group last Fri. But as someone who has seen how quickly awful things can happen and how people you love can be taken away, I have to fight to avoid paralysis. In many ways, this is the hardest part of parenthood for me. Sometimes it feels dangerous to love someone this much.

4.) My Sleep Schedule: There have been a few times this week that I was so tired, the idea of staying up another minute with her felt like torture. And still she cried. Thank G-d for R. Sun. night was the worst. She screamed starting at midnight. We thought we would be up all night and I was actually getting delirious with exhaustion. R took over and patiently held her on her stomach with a binky in her mouth, patting her back for a half hour until she fell asleep. I am great with the days. Give me all day with her and I am ready for anything. But 10 minutes of fussiness at night make me ready for the loony bin.

5.) How Many Diapers We Use: I cannot count the number of times I have changed a marginally dirty diaper only to hear the tell tale sound of another as soon as I leave the nursery. I think we are going through 15 diapers a day. The frugal side of me (YES--this side exists despite R's insistence to the contrary) wants to conserve diapers, while the mommy wants to make her baby dry. Of course I give in to the mommy side, hence the inordinate amount of diapers we go through. Because honestly, if I cannot control when I get to use the restroom b/c of my baby (ie, she always wants me when I want to pee) how can I possibly expect to control when she does?

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