Baby you can drive my car..

1982 Honda CivicMy first car was actually a VW Fox. I couldn’t remember the year though and well, hated it. The heat never worked and it had this weird, fake feeling leather that the old Volkswagens had and I sort of feel, still do.

I traded it in for a VW Cabriolet. It died and after a series of stupid, crappy vehicles, I landed this beauty. Only my brother and I painted mine black with pink racing stripes. I loved that car.

It had probably 200,000 miles on it. The radio worked sometimes but it was the best car I’d ever had. I only had to get rid of it when Devlynn’s car seat wouldn’t fit in the back. They were much bigger than and a 1982 Honda Civic has a tiny back seat.

I handed my little Civic over to someone for 300.00 and moved onto motherhood.

Just like that.

As an adult I’ve had a few different rides. A white jeep kindly gifted to us from my in laws. It was stolen on New Year’s Eve and when it was recovered I was too afraid to drive it again. My sister in law helped us get a mini van. It was purple and felt horrible and perfect all at the same time. Buying a minivan made me feel like I was never going to be be cool again. I may never have been cool to start with though. The purple monster served us well, driving us two and from Pennsylvania and then finally it was the van that brought us here to live. The jury is still out on if it brought us home.

As many Dodge’s do, the transmission fell out and I took it too a junk yard, thanking it for it’s service and crawled into van number two. The worst car I’ve ever driven in my life. Never have I been so happy to see a flashing check engine, knowing it meant the end. That brought the Explorer. The car I loved, the car that died. The car that led me to the stupidest van known to man.

Okay that might be an exaggeration.

Last year we leased “the” van. We’ve named him Clark even though I still don’t love him enough to call him by name. He’s brand new and I don’t ever have to worry about him breaking down but not only did he come with a car payment. He came with shame. And utter uncoolness.

Minivan soccer mom, in the minivan that every single mother in North America drives. Except mine doesn’t have a DVD player or automatic doors. Because the jokes on me. (I do confess I hate those doors so really, I am okay with it except mornings at preschool when I feel silly to remind the poor preschool teachers that they have to shut it themselves. Insert embarrassed face).

I should preface that it’s a good van. And as I said, I don’t ever worry it will leave me stranded on the road. I have both peace of mind in good mechanics and Honda Care but there is something to be said about turning in your hot pink hair and picking up a set of minivan keys.

I sold out for safety. I sold out.

I might be having a midlife crisis I realize.

But I didn’t say that outloud.

I’m now searching for Devlynn’s first car. We’ve a small budget and I hear her say a lot how bad she wants a Jeep. She’s not getting one but hey, a teenager can dream. I think back to how great it was to have a first car. I’m excited for her to feel the indescribable feelings of freedom that comes along with being handed your first set of keys. Hopefully she won’t hate me when I ask her to pick up milk…. or drive her brothers to practice.

I hope she finds a car she loves. That she can remember fondly and google should she ever have a midlife car crisis. I have so many fond memories in that car. So so many.

 

 

Hi! I’m Gail, the voice behind Mimicking Motherhood. I started blogging after the birth of my 2nd child as a way to connect with far away family. Things have definitely changed since then. Now, mama to five, this is a place to help connect with other mothers, who feel like me.I love to make and write all while trying to figure out how to be myself in the world of anxiety and depression. Glad you stopped by.

Hello, I am a hypocondriac

imageI never go to the doctor. Ever. I hate it. I even wait till 12+ weeks when I am pregnant. It’s just not my thing. At all. So this last week when I woke up with chest pain and short breath, you knew I didn’t feel well when I couldn’t get to the doctor’s office fast enough. I thought to myself, “great, I have pneumonia and if I don’t get it treated, they’ll put me in the hospital and my house will fall apart”. And drove me and the babies to the closest urgent care. Yoga pants, bed head and all.

I thought they’d listen to my lungs, give me a prescription and send me on my way.

Boy was I wrong.

When you go into any kind of medical building and you poorly word how you’re feeling with things like “chest pain” and soreness in you arms followed by trouble breathing, they rush you in for an EKG followed quickly by a chest xray.

I can knock that one off my bucket list.

Now imagine me though, sort of shocked, not feeling well, with my three and one year old, getting an ekg. Also mix in the fact I am still nursing and that you can’t have a underwire bra on with an EKG and you end up with breastmilk, screaming toddlers and pleading to all things holy, just to go home.

I was not having a heart attack. I don’t even have a little bit of fluid in my lungs. It’s just Costochondritis and it’s pretty much nothing. I’m a hypochondriac. You could tell by how the nurses looked at me. Ugh the worst.

My chest still hurts. The doctor said it had lots to do with toting around my monster one year old. I don’t think it helps I still hold Dexter as much as he’ll let me. And age. I guess sometimes you don’t realize how much your body has aged.

All and all it wasn’t that fun and I don’t think I will be so eager to go in again.

Health care is so scary. You worry if you don’t go in, something could be terribly wrong but if you do go in and it’s nothing, I always worry they think I am insane. The anxiety talking I realize. But I still wonder. I often wonder why some of *us* get so wrapped up in what people think about us. And why, when most people stop caring, I still do. Better to get looked at, better safe the sorry, they say but I can’t get past the “what if they think I am crazy”. I almost had Davis in the car because I so doubted myself.

I’ve decided to start the doula program this summer. I can’t however decided whether I should do a certified program or a postpartum program. I worry that if I work with woman before and during labor and delivery, I won’t have the know how to teach them to trust their own bodies. I couldn’t ever trust mine. I think my poor husband was ready to deliver our babies in the bathroom because I was so hesitant to call and “bother” anyone. I don’t ever want my mothers to feel like that. But if I couldn’t learn to trust myself, how do I teach them? And I really want to work in the birth arts. I really want to help women and families have the births they want. Especially having seen bother my sister and sister in laws wonky hospital deliveries. But will I be good enough?

I have also waffled with the idea of working as a postpartum doula but focusing special attention on mama’s who’ve lost their little ones. I think there is perhaps a special needs for care in that field. To have a “friend” who knows what to say and how to help. To be there as a physical and emotional support. I’ve only done a little research on it but found little. And as strange as people may find it, I have always had a calling to work with those with loss. It takes all kinds, all hearts and mine is with those mamas.

Making these big leaps is hard for me. I fear failing because I feel like I’ve failed at everything. And I just want to do good… I just don’t know where to start.

Hi! I’m Gail, the voice behind Mimicking Motherhood. I started blogging after the birth of my 2nd child as a way to connect with far away family. Things have definitely changed since then. Now, mama to five, this is a place to help connect with other mothers, who feel like me.I love to make and write all while trying to figure out how to be myself in the world of anxiety and depression. Glad you stopped by.

Cookies or grapes

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January and February are particularly tight months for us. It’s after the holidays and a birthday and I just have never had much work in the cold season. When I was shooting it was because of the cold but now that I mostly focus on graphic work, I think the slow period comes from other people’s tight months too. I am a meal planner, a frugal shopper. I utilize both Aldi and freezer meals. I have to, I’m feeding 7 and 5 of them are boys. We do what we can to get through the lean months. All of the time I worry, all of the time we come out okay.

Yesterday I took my weekly budget to the store for the staples I can’t keep in stock. Milk, chocolate milk (yes, I know how much it costs), bread, bananas, apples, carrots and some treats for today’s school Valentine’s party. I got healthy snacks this time and pre-cut, non-brown apples are where it is at. I buy eggs at Grocery Outlet though. You can get 2.5 dozen for around 2.00. Dexter eats at least one egg a day and with baking and what not, I need eggs all the time. It’s conveniently next to Dollar Tree too. Win win.

I wandered around the store for awhile, taking note of new items and how their produce looked. I grabbed lunch meat and some frozen fast food for the days when dinner doesn’t come till 9PM and then I stood in line behind a woman who smelled lovely, like the woods but didn’t crack a smile and counted her money over and over. 26.00. I couldn’t help but count with her. She’d placed most of her items onto the belts but held onto a bag of grapes. And when it was her turn, she asked how much they were and when the checker  replied, she dropped her head and asked the checker to put them back.

I couldn’t help but notice she’d chosen two, several pound logs of cookie dough over those grapes. And I wondered, without judgement, why?

I played out several scenarios in my head. But I couldn’t help but think why I’d of chosen the cookie dough. If my kids needed a treat for school, they’d signed up for it, for a party, and I couldn’t bake, I would’ve chosen the dough too. To make sure they fit in, to make sure they have what they need. And while cookie dough doesn’t seem like a need to some of us. I might be a need to them. Did she chose her kids over herself? I couldn’t help but think those grapes might of been a want, a need for her. That she gave up to makes sure someone else was taken care of.

As a mother I always try and put my children before myself. Often at the sake of sanity. I want grapes. I want them but their need for cookie dough always comes before mine. When they need a haircut, they get it. When I do? It waits until I make sure their needs are met. It’s what parents are suppose to do, isn’t it? There is so much huff and puff these days about self care. You need time for yourself, they say but when it comes at the expense of your children, how do you choose self over the people you brought into this world and promise to take care of.

Tough being a mother.

My self care has fallen to the way side. I don’t go out much and though a tried and true introvert, I still experience the longing for connection. I just think it’s not in the same way of the masses. I am never going to go to moms night out but I would really like a mom friend at baseball. Even if we don’t talk, it would be nice to breath in the presence of her and her of me. But my going out? It’s Cub Scouts and while I cherish and value the time I get to spend with my Drew and I think Chuck, Steve and Charlie are pretty much the bomb.. .I couldn’t care less about how to build a tent and I am a TERRIBLE Pinewood Derby car creator. I’m trying to retrain my brain into taking those moments in as “self care” but I find myself thinking about what it would be like to be 17 again sitting at a table on the Pearl Street mall listening to Open Mic night at Penny Lane cafe. It was my self care. My connection to people, my  grapes.. and I am missing it. This weekend, at a Cub Scout related volunteering, I listened at the pastor taught about rest.. and I thought, I never rest. Even when I am still….

I feel fortunate in the fact I have a couple pretty stellar online friends. I chat with two every day. Both too far to visit daily but close enough that if I filled up my tank I could go see for a few days. I’ll do that some day, when there is more time for me.

The days are long but the years are short, they say. I think while I struggle with it right now, ultimately I am doing the right thing by my children and kids by giving them the very best I can. But I think I need something, even if it’s little, just to myself.

How do you self care? Or are you, like me, struggling?

 

Hi! I’m Gail, the voice behind Mimicking Motherhood. I started blogging after the birth of my 2nd child as a way to connect with far away family. Things have definitely changed since then. Now, mama to five, this is a place to help connect with other mothers, who feel like me.I love to make and write all while trying to figure out how to be myself in the world of anxiety and depression. Glad you stopped by.