Learning How Life Works… Again

Posted on 12 Jan 2015 in Breathe | 0 comments

It’s been almost a year since my last post. Not for lack of thoughts or things to say. But it’s been almost a year since I’ve had a moment to myself, to sit and reflect consciously on my life – and the things I care about. In May of 2014, I welcomed a little girl into my world who has challenged, stretched, delighted, and changed me. And she’s also been teaching me – all over again – how life works. The way I used to do things doesn’t work anymore…

That little peanut is my new normal. She’s changed everything.IMG_3120 And I couldn’t be happier, but I’m also having to relearn how to be me in the midst of learning how to be “Mom.”

I have no idea what I’m doing most days. It feels like a rush to read all the books and mommy blogs and in the middle of it all, I’m supposed to still take care of myself. I don’t even know what “myself” looks like anymore, if I’m honest. So much has changed – body, soul, spirit.

My body is an entirely different shape. And it’s also used for entirely different purposes. It makes food, it’s a jungle gym, it’s a baby carrier, it sags a bit around the edges, it’s a bit creaky, and it certainly isn’t as well rested as it used to be. I average 4 hours of sleep at a stretch, and somehow that’s enough – I’m just grateful we moved out of the 2 hour stretches! None of my clothes fit the same, and I have no idea how women get back into their workouts immediately after giving birth. I had a stretch of about six weeks when I got in a little bit of movement, and then she started crawling. Now my life is keeping up with her.

My mind, will, emotions – they’re all a jumble. I have found that “baby brain” is definitely a thing. I had hoped it wasn’t, but my thoughts randomly trail off… I just forget what I’m talking about or drift into a vacant brain space and hang out there for a while. I know that I’m smart – two Masters don’t just do themselves – but I find my thoughts occupied with poop and feeding schedules and other baby-related things. I wish I could remember what it was like to have deep philosophical or theological mental jam sessions, but right now, poop and food and baby stuff consume all my mental energy. I seem to have no willpower. Ice cream? Yes, please. Workout? I can’t right now. My emotions are a bit roller-coastery. They say it’s hormones, but it’s also lack of sleep. I randomly get super emotional. Some days I’m ok, and others, I’m not.

My spirit is experiencing a new level of love. That’s the only way I can explain it. It’s like I grew a special heart for Love the day she arrived. I loved her before she was out of the body, but the smell, the feel, the experience of my daughter is special. It feels different. The level of love is beyond just feeling. It’s a spiritual reality. I feel connected to this little girl in a way that I’ve never felt connected to anything else before. I would do anything for her. But I also find myself doing things that make her cry in order to do what’s best for her. I put her down for naps when she’s crying – because it’s the right thing to do. We sleep trained, because she needed the structure in order to teach herself how to sleep. I don’t let her eat paper, or pine needles, or dive off the couch – even though it frustrates her – because I want her to be safe and secure. I’m learning so much about what God means because I’m beginning to understand what Love looks like with discipline.

All that to say, it’s my goal in 2015 to begin writing again. Even if it’s only once every couple weeks. I need to get something going again. Prime the pump, whet my writing appetite, get geared up – because this year, I’d like to finish my novel in NaNoWriMo. I’ve got 66 days to start a better habit. Maybe I’ll even get into 300 words again, because anyone can do 300 words! So have a glorious January people.

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