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An Early Spring

01/05/12

An Early Spring

Permalink 07:17:00 am by cassie, Categories: Announcements [A]

I'm trying to get back into control of my life these days. Pregnancy the second time around really did a number on that. I have a few goals to complete - getting back in shape physically and spiritually, reading more books, and reading through  my professional journals - that I've been slowly working on since E was born and it feels good to make headway on them. When it was just Mark and I, work was my primary responsibility, but things have shifted since then. My home and my kids are feeling more and more like my profession.  It's hard for me to articulate, but even when I had only one kid, I didn't quite feel like a mom, partly because of the financial pressure for me to work after buying a house, a car, hospital bills, and maternity leave, and partly because, at least in my case (your mileage may vary on this one) I didn't find it to be that difficult to care for only one kid. Mills was constantly awake, rarely napped, and kept me awake all night until she was around nine months, but on the days I didn't work, we would go out for walks and she'd sleep in her carriage, we'd lounge around on the couch together, and I'd let her roll around the living room while I got stuff done. It was exhausting without sleep, but it was low pressure responsibility. 

  This second time around, I'm an even more relaxed mom, but there's less lounging around, fewer walks (it's a lot chillier in November than it is in July..), and a lot more keeping up with a two year old's schedule. There's more to do, and I think I like it. It's been nice to start to really think of myself as a mom first, nurse second. It was probably just denial about the next infinite years of my life being taken up with childrearing, but it's taken me this long to put things in that order without feeling a loss of identity. I worked hard for that RN, I currently work hard to keep educated in my profession, but I think I'm finally able to loosen my grip on it, knowing its not my most important role these days. 

  In the process of getting my life in order since November, I've also committed to a whole house cleanse. Every room except for our spare bedroom's closet has been picked through and reorganized, things we don't need given away, clothes sorted and purged, closets overhauled. My parents never would have known it when I was living at home with them in my trashed room, but I'm now somewhat of a neat freak. I'm thankful for all I have, I don't mind owning things, I just want them all to have a use and place in my home. If it doesn't fit those two criteria of (1) Purposeful use and (2) Designated home, it usually has to go. I find single-purpose items interesting, but not for me. So all this housecleaning has done wonders for my psyche. It's so much more pleasant to live and move about in this little space I call my home when I don't have to look at things I don't use lying around on top of every available surface. I was so depressed, my energy reserves completely depleted during this pregnancy, I was not able to do any of this and it only made me feel worse. It's as if a huge weight has been lifted off of me to clean my house, to have no piles of laundry, to be on my feet, to exercise, to be around friends and people again, to greet my husband at the door after his long day at work without breaking into tears and dragging him down with me into the pit I was living in. I'm back from doing more than just the bare minimum to survive. What a tremendous blessing these past few months since then have been. 

  Hindsight is enlightening. I was overwhelmed by many little things then. Some of the hardships have not gone away, but they seem much more manageable now. I think we all have our coping mechanisms, but for me, the thing that makes it hardest for me to cope is feeling as if I can't be productive, sitting around seemingly doing nothing. It's refreshing to be on my feet, caring for my family in all the many little things I do every day and being more in control of my own emotions, despite being unable to change our circumstances. To make my home a haven for my husband to come home to, rather than his second job - keeping his wife from a mental breakdown - to give that little gift to him after a long year where he carried me and the kids in addition to the long hours he works... that truly makes me the happiest. A clean home and an unhysterical wife to come home to are very small things, a pittance of thanks to that man. 

   So I open up the shades every morning, the sunshine coming through so warmly even though I know it's freezing outside, and I feel just like the weather, crisp and bright and shining. I find myself stopping to thank God periodically throughout the day for restoring my joy, not in circumstances, but my joy in him, and it spills out into life at large and fills this little badly-decorated house in the suburbs and makes it warm and beautiful to me again. 

    

2 comments

Comment from: katie [Visitor]
katieI love your thoughts on this blog, Cassie.
01/08/12 @ 18:47
Comment from: cassie [Member]
cassie<3 Glad you enjoy it. It's good for my mental health. Writing was always a good outlet for me and I forget how much I need to decompress. Instead I get sucked into Facebook statii and other nonsense. Just not as satisfying. :)
01/09/12 @ 08:05
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I like to multi-task: wife, writer, nurse, Christian, ne'er do well. I do all with equal gusto.

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