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Letting Go

One thing about pregnancy is that it brings out a slew of emotions, good ones and bad ones. I’m starting this blog, not sure if I will actually post it for the world to see, but full of overwhelming feelings of love, fear, and hope. Last night Lucas woke up crying “Mama” around 2:30, and I went to him. He had a wet diaper, leaking into his pajamas. I changed him, refilled his water cup, and put him back in bed. Then I went back to bed and tried to go to sleep, but I couldn’t. For some reason, I was worried. I’m not sure why, I was just worried, maybe that something was wrong, maybe from all the stories I’ve been hearing about break-ins and murders in Ventura, maybe cause I know there is no lock on one particular window and my wild and hormonal imagination has taken over my pre-pregnancy brain. I lied there in bed, and then noticed Lucas on the video monitor. He couldn’t sleep either. He was rolling back and forth, fidgeting, opening and closing his eyes, playing with his cup of water…. why wasn’t he sleeping? Was he thinking about something that was bothering him? Did he sense my anxiousness? I wanted to check on him but held off. Soon he was calling “Mama, Mama” again, and I jumped up and went in his room. “Dair”, he said, wanting me to pick him up and take him to the rocking chair. Normally I would have tried to get him to just lay down and go back to sleep, but this time I eagerly grabbed him out of his crib and went with him to the rocking chair. He hugged me tight and I let him bury his face in my shoulder while we rocked back and forth for awhile. I wanted to hug him and hold him all night, feeling like as long as he was in my arms he was safe. Safe from what, I don’t know… but safe. I finally put him down, and he eventually went back to sleep in his bed, but I was still wide awake – listening to every sound in the house, every peep he made over the monitor. What is wrong with me?! I need to sleep! Eventually I did, and when morning came, I was very tired and very grumpy – that “awakeness” that I had in the middle of the night was completely gone.

Fast forward a couple of hours. I am tired and my whole body doesn’t want to move. It is about 8:30 and I am trying to get lucas to take a morning nap since he missed a lot of sleep last night, and I need a break. Ryan says goodbye to me as I’m staring at the video monitor again, wishing Lucas would settle down and go to sleep. I must have looked extra needy, or extra grumpy, or something, because five mintues after leaving for work, Ryan comes back home with a Butterfinger candy bar for me…. I had been craving one the night before. How awesome is he?! I immediately felt better, happier, and more energetic. It’s amazing what one simple little thing can do – the fact that he was thinking about me, despite my grumpiness this morning, made the day all of a sudden much better.

The rest of the day has been an additional swirl of emotions… an accident on the freeway – a car upside down with rescue vehicles surrounding it – almost leads me to tears, then all of a sudden I’m thinking about Lucas again. Is he okay? He’s spending the day with Nana and Papa, and I know they take excellent care of him, but I am still thinking about him and wondering if he needs his mama right now. I keep thinking about what I will do when Nathan comes. How am I going to give Lucas the attention he needs when I’m busy with a newborn? Lucas needs me so much. I feel like I can understand him so much better than anyone else, because I spend so much time with him. I don’t want to lose the close bond that we have when another baby comes into the house. And at the same time I want to develop that close bond with Nathan. I want to be able to give him all the love and attention that I have given to Lucas. I see moms and kids everywhere I go and I wonder what they are thinking. How do they do it? What made them make their decisions about how many kids to have, when to have them. I look at little girls and I wonder if I will ever have a daughter. I look and little boys and think how absolutely blessed I am to have a beautiful son and another one on the way. I wonder how I will feel after Nathan is born. Will I still want more kids? Will I feel like the family is complete? I don’t know. I still feel in my heart that I will have one more after Nathan, but will the first glimpse of sanity when Nathan starts playing on his own lead me in a different direction? I have no idea.

Among other worries and emotions these days is the constant desire for some way to be earning income for our family. It feels like we are moving so very very slowly towards our financial goals. We are working so hard and I feel like we are on our way. I can even see the progess we’ve made over the last year, I just know it is a long journey to get where we eventually want to be. I’m doing my best to save money in every area I can, and Ryan is working so hard at work and with his own company to bring in extra income. I always worry about this, always feel pressure to meet societal expectations – that we should own our house, that we should have a certain percentage in our emergency fund, that we should be doing this or that. It is hard to let go of those pressures, even though I know we are doing the best we can. I wish I had some sort of part time job I could do from home that provided me with a regular income. I am so skeptical of all the internet scams out there, and I’ve learned I’m not so good at direct sales – or maybe I just couldn’t make the time to get out and work at that. With Ryan’s schedule at work it’s almost impossible for me to have any kind of regular work hours planned for the evening, unless I want to work at 9pm…. not so much.

I’ve been really focused on Lucas lately. As he develops, I’m noticing a lot of traits about him that make him different than a lot of the other kids we’ve met. He is more active. He is more perceptive. And he seems to be becoming more intense. I mean, this kid feels emotions so strongly that if he can’t express what he feels to me immediatly, his whole body tenses and shakes as his eyes widen with emotion. He seems to hear every sound around him, sees every thing on the ground, in the sky, in the air. He will point out the tiniest sliver of the moon at 2pm when I have to squint and search to see it. He will insist on finding every sprinkler on the lawn before willingly getting in the car. And he is constantly on the go – running, not walking. He rarely sits still. He climbs on everying, jumps on everything, touches everything, and wants to try everything he sees me do. He has also started having a hard time in groups of people for long periods of time. He seems to get overwhelmed and wants to run away after about 20 or 30 minutes, or he wants me to hold him. He would rather explore the rocks and cracks in the parking lot than sit in his kindermusik class with me and play games with the other kids. So, needless to say, I’ve been trying really hard to understand these things about him – why he feels this way, what I can do to help him, etc. He is so smart, and he understands so much of what I say to him. I want to be able to help him learn about his world in the best ways possible for him, and I want to go at his pace. But at the same time I want to teach him the things he needs to learn, I want to set rules and boundaries and give him structure. It is hard to find a balance sometimes. My head is swimming and full of all the research and reading I’ve been doing on discipline, personality types, and child development. I think sometimes I care too much about doing everything right for Lucas and I need to just let go and follow my instincts.

Which leads me to my “Letting Go” subject line.

I was driving home from Costco this afternoon, after meeting Ryan for lunch and then getting supplies for Jenny and Brian’s party tomorrow. Trying to pull a left out of the parking lot, I’m watching the cars coming each direction, seeing a few opportunities to quickly dart out into my lane, I just couldn’t put my foot on the gas. I’m tired, my reaction time is slower today, I feel out of sorts and my head is in a million places. I just can’t do it. I back up and pull to make a right turn instead, now only having to navigate through one lane of oncoming cars, and feel more confident to be on my way. Once I’m headed my new direction, I notice the back up of cars at the light ahead. Several Semi-trucks are blocking the intersection, causing a major back log of cars that are unable to make their turn at the light. I have the passenger window down because Ruffy is sitting beside me and I hear the lady in the beat up red car next to me cussing at the truck. I pat Ruffy on the head and think about how I kind of smacked him on the behind this morning when he was out of control with excitement and I had been afraid he’d knock Lucas over again. I shouldn’t have done that, and I knew that. It was absolutely wrong, and it was me being out of control just like him. He deserves more than that from me. So… all of a sudden I just thought to myself, I need to let go. And I immediately felt better.

I need to let go of worry – worry for Lucas, Nathan, Ryan, myself, and anyone else I care about. I need to let go of my frustrations and stop to breathe rathen than let myself think, say, or do something that is wrong or that I may regret. I need to lead by example, to help Lucas lead a happy and positive life without worry. I need to show him how I can manage my emotions with less frustration and more positive energy. Man oh man is life a work in progress, and parenting is the biggest learning process of all. I’m doing the best I can, and it is hard, but at the same time it is absolutely wonderful and I am happier today with my life, my marriage, and my family than I ever have been before because of Lucas and Nathan entering my life. I am truely blessed.

If anyone is actually still reading this, I’m amazed you made it though! Welcome to my thoughts for the day… now you know what it’s like to be a pregnant Mama for a few hours.

6 Comments

  • Cindy

    All I can say is 2 things:
    1. You are an amazing writer! To be able to share how your feeling (and believe me–we all feel different degrees of this 🙂 -WOW!)
    2. I know some of how you feel, the overwhelming emotions (I blame it on pregnancy!) and trying to do everything you can to be good at what you do, that you can not even function anymore, the worry, anxiety! I think it huge because we are trying to take care of not only ourselves anymore.

    Lucas is a good little boy, he is happy likes to play, explore, and be a boy-I agree just follow your instincts–If all babies and children were alike it would NOT be any fun, right?… Lately more than anytime I try to read all this stuff also and I forget to ask myself what I think is the right thing and how I feel about it. He is growing and changing day by day, you are smart to embrace what is good and happy and go on. (Always remind me of this also).

    BTW–Lastly I was at the Costco parking lot right before that accident (no paramedics there yet just bystanders…) Small world huh?! I was in tears, I hope that guy was okay because he car was the worst I have seen in a while.

    Take care of yourself, and have a good weekend! Thanks for meeting me, you are always a pleasure to be with!!

  • Anonymous

    Well I read every word all the way to the end !! Just know that you are doing great and your thoughts prove your heart is into this lifelong project. Also know that all those that you love, and that love you, will be by your side now and when little Nathan arrives in a few months. RELAX, Let Go…… pa-PA !

  • Maddie

    Suzanne,

    I read this last night before I went to bed and I realized just how proud I am of you. Of all that you have accomplished, the sacrifices that you have made, the wonderful mother, wife and friend that you are and will continue to be. I think it is just amazing that you can put "pen to paper" and write out your thoughts, feelings and emotions and are able to touch so many people.

    You are an amazing woman and you have 3 very lucky guys in your life. I want you to know that I pray for you and your family often and know that I am here for you! Whatever you need, I will do my best to help!

    Love, Maddie

  • Renee

    Everytime I read anything you write, it makes me smile knowing that one day I will be a mama too! 🙂 You inspire me. I am the QUEEN of worrying…and I don't even have babies yet. I think it's natural to be protective!! Lots of love. I am here for you.

  • Suzanne Jeanette

    Thank you guys so much for your comments… I love to share my thoughts, and I love that you read them and understand what I am saying. It means so much to me to have you all in my life. Being a parent is so challenging and I feel stronger knowing I have such great support from friends and family. I love you all!

  • Krista

    Hi Suzanne,

    That was very touching. I can relate to all of your feelings and anxieties. Brandon is turning 7 in two weeks, and let me tell you that it doesn't change. There is always something to worry about, something that just grabs you every now and again. These hit you because of the love for your child, and now children for you. I know that I haven't been around you and Lucas much, but I can see from your photos that he is a delight! I can only imagine the mother that you are; so soft spoken, patient and intelligent. He is blessed to have you and Ryan as parents! Now that I am hooked on your words, I am sure that I will get caught up on what you've been up to! Give my best to Ryan, and I hope to talk to you soon! Take care.

    Love,
    Krista

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