In the wake of my last two part blog, I realize that I didn't express gratitude on my part. Six months later, when the hormones have settled some, and I feel less threatened and anxious, I find that I have relaxed and have been able to reflect on those first few months a little more clearly. You see, I was disappointed by the way my Pregnancy progressed, the birth of my Son, and the first couple of months of his life.
I harbored lingering fantasies and expectations, carried over from teenage years, of what my Pregnancy, Delivery and Mothering would be like. In my mind, everyone had a part, a role, and I didn't allow any room for anything different. I fully expected certain people to behave in a certain way, partly because of my own expectations, but also because I had come to expect certain behavior from them as a part of who they are, who they always have been and how well I came to know them. The behaviors and moments that actually occurred when I became Pregnant and gave birth, were not quite in line with my imaginings.
Of course, I believe this happens to most, if not all, new parents. It is easy to set ourselves up with expectations, only to find reality snapping you back into the present situation and the cold hard facts.
For some reason, this was difficult for me to accept and adapt to. While I had my moments of joy, the overall theme of my pregnancy was disappointment, a taste of bitterness and heavy frustration. It's taken me six months after the birth of my Son to address these feelings, to be able to express them, work through them and hopefully not too far from now, move on from them.
It has been a slow process, but already I have found a center that I can focus on when I find myself in a situation that leaves me feeling frustrated, hurt or anxious. I feel as if I can finally breathe, and it's allowed me to examine the relationships I have with people who are not my Son. Whether I like it or not, those relationships have changed quite a bit, and it has been difficult accepting those changes and adapting my life to them.
It has been far easier to adjust to my relationship with my Husband, though even that has it's moments of difficulty, but my relationships with parental figures and friends have been far more difficult to manage. The time has come to address those challenges, either by expressing my feelings and concerns verbally, or simply accepting and moving on from them.
The very knowledge that I can, and want to do this comes as a welcome change and relief from how I have been feeling. As I expressed before, it is vital to me that my Son develop happy and healthy connections and relationships with other people. He can do part of that on his own, but I have my part in helping him learn how to form those connections and relationships in a safe and happy way. He may be his own person, but I am still his protector and teacher. I provide him with example, and I certainly do not want my hang up's regarding other people to become his hang up's. I have no intention of passing on any racism, bigotry, hate or sexist opinions onto him, and have no intention of allowing anyone else to either, but that is a given. What will be more of a challenge is maintaining a loving, healthy relationship with me, my Husband and our family members. I fully intend to work on this, not only for my Son, but for myself as well.
Because, while I may not have expressed it before, I am grateful for the people in my life, and how fortunate i've been. The support and love they've offered, with or without agenda, have been vital to where I, and my Husband, am today. Will I allow my Son to be an offering of our gratitude? Absolutely not, but because of the relationships we had and have, I would like to share him and encourage him to get to know those people so that he can learn to love them too.
Motherhood is not simply about changing diapers, midnight feedings, or soothing cries, it's about changing yourself to become a nurturing example and teacher. I feel as if most of us do not realize just how challenging it can be to acknowledge, accept and embrace the change, (I certainly didn't). Because not only are you facing change with the advent of Pregnancy, you are facing change every day of your life thereafter. We all face change on a daily basis as it is, but when you make the choice to bring a child into this world, the choices you make about the changes to come are now going to affect the person you will be giving life to. I believe that the choice to embrace or deny makes a very far reaching difference in how we raise our children. This is why I will continue to face every challenge of change, working my way to and through the best possible outcome for my family. My Son, my Husband, and I deserve no less.
6 months ago