Thursday, 22 October 2015

Un-structuring

What's the deal with the mama guilt? The second guessing, never truly believing you're doing the absolute best thing, constantly worrying you could have should have would have done it better "if"? Every decision is accompanied by anxiety, and I'm almost sure it shouldn't be.

There are millions of things I'm not uptight about. I think I'm easy going, as parents go. But there's not one thing I've thought "yes, this is EXACTLY the right thing at EXACTLY the right time" and gone ahead without hesitation.

Freyja started nursery last week. Two mornings a week at a lovely little place a couple of miles away. There are a couple of staff and not many children - the most I've seen there at any one time is 4, but sometimes there are only 2 of them, so the ratios are favourable. Ha, I sound like an adult. Also very parent like is my guilt. I assume it's normal/natural/to be expected, especially if you beat yourself up as much as I do, but it's still a shitty feeling.

Un-structuring is hard. I always thought I was this free spirit, but it turns out that (at the moment anyway) I'm shit at being free. In a way, it's easier having a 9 to 5 job.

Of the three days a week Kane works, two of them Freyja is in nursery for half the day and the other my Mum is usually home. I'm not sure what that says about me as a mother. On  the one hand, it's good for Freddie to do other things with other people and especially with other children. On the other hand, I feel like I'm doing wrong by her by making her spend time away, Obviously the 1st hand won. It can't be good for a toddler to spend ALL of their time with their parents and grandparent, socialising is really important. It's only a couple of days a week. I'm not doing her any harm. UNLESS the childminders are awful people (we don't think they are, but without installing a spy cam in a button on a baby's cardigan, who really knows?). The facilities are excellent (hark at me adulting again), lots of outside space, a pond and a forest and three rooms for different types of playing, lots of painting and messy play, music, sensory stuff, a mud kitchen, log cabin, slides, books, song time and story time, cots for sleeping... 

So what am I supposed to do while she's there? I barely know what I'm supposed to do while she's here with me; when we're inside I feel like maybe we should be doing more outside, perhaps we don't read enough (we do), perhaps she's not learning enough, maybe our play should be more creative, maybe we don't have enough outings, maybe maybe perhaps perhaps maybe. It's shit. And it can be quite boring - the thoughts and the actual doing. It's hard to keep a demanding 1 year old happy and occupied all of the time, plus there's a complete lack of any sense of achievement. Aside from getting through the day. I watch the clock until Kane comes home, but then I don't run away and hide, I hang out with both of them, we get dinner together, eat, play, Kane baths Freyja and then she goes to bed. So why watch the clock? Part of it must be the desire for company other than that of my baby, although she's good company. Part of it is because I second guess myself all the time and when someone else is there the responsibility feels less, like I might not fuck it up so badly as if I were alone. When she wakes in the night I go to her, but often I wake Kane up first to check if I should feed her. WHY WHY WHY? She's hungry, just fucking feed her. That's what I think at this moment, but do I have a clue what to do when she's actually awake and hungry? Yes. Do I trust myself to make that call? Nope.

Back to being alone. So, Freyja goes to nursery and I have time for me. But I don't know who me is, or what she likes doing. I don't recognise her in the mirror (hello atrocious weight gain due to medication), and I don't feel like her. I do know that when I do have this "me" time if I don't use it constructively I feel guilty all over again. This morning I haven't hoovered or mopped or taken the compost out or changed the sheets. I've done all the washing, so that alleviates some guilt, but really Charlie, what did you DO all morning? I'm not sure I'm cut out to have all this "me" time without a plan. I'm trying to get onto a pottery course, that will give me some sense of achievement. But why do I need this, and is it a new thing or have I been kidding myself about myself forever?

Should I get a job? Am I ready?

Urgh. And I'm no good at all at being fat. When I stopped taking my meds a few weeks ago I started losing weight. I have since started taking other meds and the dose of my old ones has been upped, and I have stopped losing weight. I am hungry. Could be boredom too, now that I'm starting to function properly, as my psych nurse pointed out, but more likely it's the meds. So I want to stop taking them ALL. I've had enough. Just, urgh.

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