4

My [reluctant] beef with Father’s Day

So I am having a really hard time. I have been struggling with something the last week or so, and all other avenues to deal have failed, so I have resorted to writing. Generally, writing is my first answer to any problem. Writing is always my solution. But this time, my struggle was private, and personal and I wanted to keep it to myself. But that is not working and I can feel it boiling and an attempt to avoid an eruption, I have to get it out. Image

Sunday is Father’s Day. It is the single most conflicting day of the year for me. 

On one hand, I have a day to celebrate the most incredible Father I could have ever prayed for for my son. Andrew is a true gem. I have not been shy about expressing how incredible of a father, friend, man, and companion Andrew is. He has earned the right to be celebrated this coming Sunday. 

He has gone above and beyond the call of Father’s. He is involved in every aspect of Turner’s life. He feeds him, gives him baths, puts him to bed, reads to him, changes more poops diapers than I do, and does it all without being asked and with a smile on his face because he looks at fatherhood as a privilege. God has honestly blessed me with the perfect partner in parenthood and the perfect father for my son. 

Father’s Day should be his day. It should be a joyous day for me to shower him in love and affection. For me to let him put his feet up, cook him a full breakfast, lunch and dinner. Let him watch every sports game that is scheduled, and obey his every demand. It is his day. I want it to be his day and I want to make it 100% about him. 

But I can’t. 

And the fact that I can’t and quite frankly, don’t want to, has been eating away at me. Because while I want to be carefree and ever attentive to Andrew’s every desire this coming Sunday, I am selfish. And the only thing I have been able to think about it how this will be the second Father’s Day that my family will have to spend without my dad. Image

God I miss him. It just is not fair. He should be here. I should have my dad to celebrate. I should get to shower my dad with all things “#1 Grandpa.” But I don’t get to because cancer decided to rip him from our lives. Cancer stole my Father’s Day. So I bitter. I am very, very bitter. 

Last year was different. It was Andrew’s First Father’s Day, and Turner had only been in our lives for a few weeks. My dad died at the beginning of April, a month before Turner was born. Father’s Day followed shortly after. My dad’s death had not even really set in, as I was still caught up in the whirlwind of becoming a new parent. 

But this year it hurts. And it hurts way worse. Turner is more alert and knows people. I want to to be able to take him to my dad’s house dressed in a matching grandpa and grandson shirt. But not only do I not get to do that, Turner will never, ever get to meet his grandfather. And it sucks. It sucks so much. 

All I want to do this Sunday is go to my dad’s grave and sit. I want to spend all day there. I want to go to church that morning and pray for God to give me the strength to get through the day and then go to my dad’s grave and sit. 

But I can’t do that because it is not fair to Andrew. It is selfish. Andrew deserves his day. I can’t make it about me and missing my dad. My family’s schedule is very hectic, and when my family can meet to go to my dad’s grave together, Andrew and I can’t be there. And really we shouldn’t.  Sunday should be about Andrew. I know that it should. I want it to be. 

But I also want to be the little girl who misses her dad so bad that her heart breaks to pieces every moment of every day. 

Father’s Day has come to be my least favorite holiday all year long. Which is so not fair to Andrew. So not only do I feel awful and sad because I miss my dad, and awful and sad because Turner will never get to celebrate with his grandpa, but then I feel even worse and awful and bad because I am being selfish toward Andrew. 

And with all of those feelings. All of those emotions and thoughts, the one thing that keeps me sane and able to deal is convincing myself that God gave me Turner, and gave me Andrew as my strength to be able to have something else to celebrate this Sunday. So I should be happy and thankful, not bitter and heartbroken. 

I am just not ready to be over it. I am just not ready to not break into tears at random moments at the thought of my dad. I am not ready to not change the radio station whenever a Lynyrd Skynyrd song comes on. I am just not ready yet.

, SiteDart Author

Advertisements
10

The day I decided I wasn’t going to be fat anymore.

I just refuse. 

I full out just refuse to keep being fat. 

I have complained about my weight for months. Turner will be 1 year old on May 30, and although I have lost some of the baby weight, I have not lost even close to enough. I starve myself. I try to stick to less than 1,200 calories a day, and even when I am weak and slip up, I still rarely ever get up to 2,000. That method allowed me to shed a couple of pounds, but it is just not enough and my body has reached a point to where it is going to lose anymore. 

I can’t join a gym. 

I am an extreme obsessive introvert, and I sit here right at this very moment thinking about having to walk into any of the gym options in my town, I basically want to throw up. That is how nervous it makes me. I just can’t do it. Last night, Andrew threw out the idea of a personal trainer, but I just don’t think I can do that either. I am a complete flake when it comes to commitment and when it comes to a commitment that involves an activity with another person… especially a stranger, just not going to happen. 

But I really am tired of being fat. 

I am not like fat to where I don’t fit in my clothes without much people to notice. Like, I still have the uncomfortable and embarrassing belly skin that is a result of having a baby. But what I have noticed, and while it may be in my head, it is all I can think about, is that I am expanding horizontally. When I see reflections of myself, I am wider. The point from one hip to the other, is visibly stretched to me. And it makes me so depressed I almost cry anytime I see my reflection. Lately, it has been getting worse. I am unhappy constantly about the way I look and it makes me unhappy in other avenues of my life. 

So yesterday, I decided I wasn’t going to be fat anymore. 

I always have excuses for why I can’t work out. Andrew makes time to go to the gym every day. I find reasons why I can’t go for a run in our neighborhood or why I can’t go for a walk on the greenway after work. But they are nothing more than excuses. And that all changed yesterday. I am not going to be able to cry away my fat. So I am going to work until it is gone. Image

So I went for a run yesterday. 

I felt really good about it. Just going, and knowing I was doing something active to make a change in my life made me feel better. Now if I can just stick to it. Well, no, that isn’t even an option. I WILL stick to it. I am going to do this. A couple of ways I am going to do this. Just a warning for you guys… I need someone or something to hold me accountable. I need motivation and encouragement. Andrew is no good for this because for one, he is basically out of town every other weekend for work, and two, he would rather give in to me than hear me whine. Even if the end result is me looking like a hippo. 

So I have decided that I am going to post photos. For all the world to see. Each week I will take photos and post them here. So if you don’t want to see them, here is your warning. That is why I haven’t posted photos yet, so you can be fairly warned. I need some accountability. 

So there is that. I hope it works this time, and hopefully this will be my last blog complaining about being fat and miserable. I am sure you all are just as tired of reading them as I am of writing and feeling this way. Not to mention, the blog I wrote for my job yesterday should have been all the encouragement I needed to get off my butt and do something, but it is just never enough!  

 

, SiteDart Author

1

My first experience with pure devastation as a mother.

For the first time in Turner’s 10 months here on this earth, I experienced honest, unadulterated heartbreak this morning. Pure devastation.  I mean, took my breath away, still struggling with it, heartbreak. 

Typically, Andrew takes Turner to daycare in the mornings by himself. Well this morning, I decided to go. The only other time I had dropped Turner off at daycare was the very first day when Andrew and I went together. Turner was fine that day. Turner is fine in the afternoons when we go to pick him up. Andrew had told me that Turner had been crying in the mornings when Andrew would leave him. Well this morning, I got to experience it for myself, and it was the worst experience in my life.

Image

At first I set him on the counter, talked to the daycare teacher Jennifer,  left Turner in his carseat, then turned to leave, and before I could even reach for the door handle, Turner started to scream. At that exact moment my heart shattered. While I am sure tough Andrew just leaves anyway, I couldn’t do it. I immediately turned around and scooped Turner out of his car seat. When he realized I was not leaving yet, he stopped crying and was seemingly ok. 

His teacher assured me that Turner only cries until we get out the door, and then he is ok. But I just couldn’t handle it. When I got Turner to stop crying, I leaned him toward Jennifer and for a split second he reached for her, but as soon as he realized that if he went to her I would leaved he snapped back to  me and threw both of his hands around my neck. He buried his head between my neck and shoulder and squeezed tight. I calmed him down, then attempted it again. He hung on for dear life. At that point, I was ready to call into work and never leave Turner’s side again. But that is just not practical. So as reluctant as I was, I had to physically pry Turner’s hands away from my body and force him to Jennifer. She struggled to even hold him because he twisted and turned trying to get back to me. 

I just had to walk about the door. Pure and utter devastation. I am sure he is ok. I am sure he is playing happily with Miss Jennifer. But those few minutes, two or three minutes that felt like hours or days, was simultaneously the lowest and highest point in my life. While I felt so loved and needed in that moment, which is a pleasant surprise since he is the biggest daddy’s boy you have ever seen, it broke my heart to see him like that. 

Yet another reason why being a working mom stinks. 

, SiteDart Author

0

Forever grateful for my better half.

First and foremost I owe a huge thank you to Andrew. I am always exhausted. Regardless if it is because of my work schedule, my up all nights with Turner, because I am lazy, or whatever else factors in, I am always tired. So I usually go to sleep very early. I am talking 8 p.m. Lately, it has been worse. I have had a little bit of a cold/cough, and I have just been more drained than usual. Not to mention that on top of this annoying bit of depression, which I know drains you as well, I am also starting a new diet that essential consists of starvation. With all of those factors, and what I am sure Andrew would describe as my less than pleasant attitude, he has been picking up my slack. 

Image

Last night he managed Turner while I took a realizing bath, and then passed out before 9. Then, when I normally get up with turner for his midnight wake up session, by the time I woke up last night, Andrew has already gotten up to tend to him so I could sleep. And this comes with Andrew being sick himself. He even just had to have a chest x-ray because he coughs worse than a 50 year old smoker, and we have no idea why. 

I am so blessed to have him and once again am reminded how incredible single mothers are, because there is no way on this planet I could do what they do. 

Side note: Some of my endless work was evident in the local papers today as the press release for the car seat safety event was printed. Yay! 

, SiteDart Author

6

What no one tells you about being a mom

Warning: There is nothing fun or entertaining about this post and was written more for therapy for myself. So feel free to skip reading this one. 

I am in the midst of fighting a bit of depression. Surprisingly enough, it is in no way tied to the fact that I am basically a cow at the moment

No, instead the mental battle I am fighting is a result of the crippling weight on my shoulders. I just feel like everything is too much. I need an escape. Mere days separate me from the one  year anniversary of my dad’s death, so that certainly isn’t helping. 

God how I miss him. How these last few weeks have been filled with nothing but regret and shame for not making the most of his life while he was here. A guilt I know that I will never be able to lift. 

 Then there is the car seat safety event that I have been throwing myself into. I have somehow managed to find the time to organize this event while maintaining two full-time jobs, a free-lance job, this blog, and well, the whole being a mother thing. I admit I have let the housewife duties escape me. Oh well. But without knowing it, when I scheduled the car seat safety event months ago, the date was picked for me by others involved and I simply agreed. Well, it turns out that the car seat safety event is scheduled for April 5, one year after the day we laid my dad to rest. I am sure it is another one of those signs from God. Part of his plan to give me and my family something to do rather than sit around and weep about him. So there’s that. 

Then there is my uncontrollable thirst for baseball season. I know it may seem odd to say this is something causing me angst, but it is. I feel like Andrew and I live two completely different lives with the only thing we have in common being Turner. We even work for the same overall company and are still basically strangers (I am sure I am being dramatic here, but as of late and this wave of depression, this is how I feel). But baseball season will change that. That is the one thing that we undeniable can each relate to. The one thing that can bring us back together. Baseball is where we had our first date, where we have spent many dates since, and our love of the game encompasses us so much, yes our son’s name is Turner. So Opening Day cannot get here soon enough. Anything that can make Andrew feel less like a stranger to me. 

 And then there is the milestones in Turner’s life that I am unavoidably missing because I do nothing but work. All day everyday someone else keeps him. While I am lucky enough for that someone else to be my mom, it still is not me. So his steps, his words, his everything belongs to her. Not me. That is crushing. I want to live in a decade where women stayed home. That is where I belong. I would rock that decade. 

And I do nothing but work, but for what? I feel like I am always drowning in money woes. I make a considerably comfortable living. Lets be honest, writers are certainly not CEO salary positions, but because I write for two newspapers and am a full-time copywriter. I do way better than most people. Yet it never seems like enough. Part of that amounts to the $500 in college loans I pay each month and will continue to pay for the next 20 years. If that is not depressing, I do not know what is.

Nothing seems like enough. No one tells you that you are always going to feel like that. I always feel like I am coming up short. In my job(s), as a mom for Turner, as a partner for Andrew, as a family member for my mom and sisters. Nothing I do is good enough. It is never satisfactory. That is what has me down. That is what is weighing on my soul and taking over my mind, preventing me from functioning. Ugh, ready for this to be over.

Song that is getting me through it all: Dave Matthews Band ‘Mercy”

, SiteDart Author

Aside
2

I am overweight. And I do not say that in an attention seeking, tell me I am not fat, fishing for compliments kinda way. It is a fact. I had Turner almost 10 months ago. In that period of time, I have lost 20 of the nearly 50 pounds I gained while pregnant. I know all the experts say that it takes 9 months to put the weight on, give yourself that much time to get it back off. Well, I am slacking. 

Right after I had Turner, when I was still breastfeeding, the weight came off pretty fast. It was easy… or at least easier than now. As soon as I stopped breastfeeding, I gained it all back basically. Around Christmas time I was dieting hardcore. A very strict, 1200 calorie diet. That is when I lost most of the weight. I didn’t want to look like a whale in our first Christmas photos. I decided to start dieting after a friend’s wedding. Seeing pictures of myself almost made me want to vomit. I am a whooping 5’ 2’’, so I have no room for any extra weight to go, let alone 50 pounds. 

After seeing those pictures, I weighed myself and was disgusted when I found out that I weighted the same then, months after having my son, as I did when I was 9 months pregnant. How embarrassing. So I lost the weight. Between 20 and 25 pounds. As I mentioned in my response to the obnoxious viral epidemic known as the fitness mom, I am a very busy lady, so having lavish time to really hit the gym hard is nearly impossible. 

I lost about 20 pounds and have kept it off, give or take a little. When I was telling Andrew that I had lost that much weight, but still has 20 more to go, he was shocked. He couldn’t believe that I was ever that fat. At my biggest I was 164 pounds, both with and without baby. I just do not have the height to be putting those kind of numbers on the scale! Not to mention I carry my weight in my face, so there is no hiding it! 

So this week marks the beginning of yet another dieting/exercise attempt. While I have been making a diligent effort to not eat fast food, even though I love it, or eat bags of chips, which practically run through my veins, it still is not enough. I have to get serious. 

I am trying out Nutrisystem, which essentially means starvation. Another 1,200 calorie diet and lots of water. This time I plan to hit the gym. I avoided that at all cost last time. The company I work for gives us a free gym membership. Now if I can just find the time to go. This morning for breakfast I had a yummy blueberry muffin. But 5 minutes later and I am already practically starving. At least I have lunch to look forward to… a protein bar and two servings of vegetables. Yay. 

 I just do not want to see pictures of myself and feel physically nauseated by looking at myself. I could also use a boost in energy. I am always constantly exhausted beyond function. Hopefully, this will help. 

unnamed Wish me luck!

, SiteDart Author

3

Overwhelmed with life…but I can always count on Dave.

I am at the end with everything. I know I am just being dramatic and overly whiney today, and probably too sensitive, but that is the point I am at right now. I am not happy with work. I want more time with Turner. I want more time with my family. I want more time with friends. I want things that I know are impossible and completely unattainable, and that has gotten me really discouraged and down today. So like always, when I am having the worst of bad days, I put Dave Matthews Band on repeat.

A solid 8 hour therapy session of Dave, and while nothing will change, I feel better. Or at least relax enough to tolerate things a little better. While zipping through the Dave Matthews Channel on You Tube (because I can’t get the I Heart Radio state I created for Dave to play, adding to my anxiety today), I have come to this video and haven’t been able to move on. I just keep playing it on repeat. While there are so many things I want to say, I think this song sums it up. It articulates feelings and emotions far better than I can. I mean, this song is piece of musical genius. You just cannot go wrong with Dave. So listen and be inspired. So here you go. 

Image