Hormonal shifts, mood swings, gastro-intestinal havoc are all the beginnings of many a good joke but I’m not here for knock knocks and standup. I’m merely trying to wrap my head around the abstract concept of a human within me. There are symptoms - perpetual exhaustion, widening waist and bust lines. Plus there’s the positive pregnancy test, the sonogram and the heartbeat. So it’s true - a baby comes soon. I can know that and say it all day long while not quite believing that it’s true.
This dream is coming true – it’s unfolding. This special miracle made by a love I had already decided not to wait for. God that is even hard to say out loud though undeniable
It’s humbling and empowering to have put forth intention, to have met those intentions with actions, and to now watch it manifest in the most unexpected of ways. I haven’t been here in a very long time but there’s a story I wish to share, one that may tell my child how he/she came to be my everything. Join me on this new and grand journey as I find a new balance in motherhood, juggling diapers, a career, marriage and continue to explore my authentic self.
On break from a meeting today, some folks were mingling and catching up. My ears perked up, as they do, at the sound of my own name. A good friend and colleague was chatting with my boss -reiterating a conversation a team of our lawyers had had about my project. They decided my approach to it had been fearless…but then, upon hearing the word amended the conversation to say that was the word which describes me more generally.
Since I work in advocacy, fearless is most certainly a compliment. I can’t take that one to the bank….but I’ll take it nonetheless.
Women are superheros. We can build careers, clean homes, care for families and furballs. Oh yeah and not only can we grow humans with our bodies but we can also bleed for days and not die. These powers don’t come without some tradeoffs. Yesterday, I said the following to a guy friend.
“I’m so hormonal I’m honestly crying right now for NO reason. God being a girl blows…except when you get free drinks”
His response: ”How can we [men] deal with it when you can’t , why should we deal with it when you [women]can’t!!! ???”
He was joking of course, but my answer was “you don’t have a choice..but then neither do we.”
Women get a period. We hide it. We bitch to our friends about bloating or breakouts. We come up with cutesy names for it like “aunt flow” and have unreasonable cravings for dark chocolate. One day, each month….which just so happened to be today, I also become invincible. Catch up on 3 days of work in a few hours, race through a weeks worth of errands, cook a fabulous meal and still have energy to spare. I don’t have a choice about my period, I do have choices about my body, my health and my equality which I will NEVER surrender.
The Republican party has set a 2012 platform of “no abortions no exceptions” which threatens women’s health, choice and further abuses victims of rape and incest. Further they want to shut down Planned Parenthood’s ability to perform life saving cancer screenings and repeal the Affordable Healthcare Act which ensures that women will no longer have to pay 120% more than men for medical insurance because they own a uterus.
There are many issues I care about, but I am a woman first. Period.
My money resentment has company and a name. It’s name is Mom and the company is my brother.
She had numerous timeshares. He had to pay for his own braces.
She owns 9 houses. I put myself through college and grad school. I have the mountain of college debt to prove it.
To this day she splits the bill, including tax and tip, to the penny when we dine out together. She once charged me for half the tolls on a road trip. Gift giving….is often retroactive, insincere and riddled with strings attached. She’s forbidden from giving me any because they usually make me cry. Hard.
I chose a career in non-profit…clinging to the notion that money is not the most important thing and that it does not define me. My brother chased dollar signs and became a showy & successful entrepreneur. A few weeks ago I pondered aloud whether both of these paths were in response to her. As much as I am loathe to admit it - we both agreed that the answer was: probably. Despite our best efforts her financial illness shaped us both. Once upon a time she tried to trade custody of me for Dad’s cut in the family home. I’m not kidding.
I know resentment holds me back. I want to let it go ….but how do you forgive a person in your life who is neither remorseful or apologetic for choosing money over her children?
I am not, by nature, a patient lady. Nothing infuriates me more than waiting. I’d rather be doing. Being passive runs counter to my inner control freak.
On a whitewater rafting trip this week it was so obviously satisfying to paddle through the hard parts, while my colleagues saw fit to collapse in laughter or defeat, I could not. I was thoroughly bruised in the process - but I got where I was headed and that is what mattered. Lindy warned a friend last week, that if I willed something, it would be so. It’s true. I perservere - sometimes to a fault. I’m guilty of doing it in love, though I tried not to, especially with Mate.
There are women in my life, some who I love dearly and have envied as they walked down the aisle. I wondered silently when my turn would come. Yet, I knew the route to some of those alters was rife with manipulation, guilt and coercion. Many of those marriages have been crumbling. I am NOT blaming them or their spouses. I am only receiving confirmation from the universe that the road I have traveled has been the right one, even if I feel lonely tonight.
He won’t need to be cajoled to love me now and forever. He will call me to expand rather than contract. I will be able to lean on him without hesitation. He just isn’t going to be the man monikered as “mate”.