It's been far too long since I updated. I've started several posts, only to be pulled away by one thing or another, and each post ends up in that graveyard of drafts, never to be touched again. I'd like to finish something, but perhaps all I really can do right now is start. And start. And start again.
There was a discussion about motherhood on one of my Facebook groups recently, and something profound was said (not by me):
I am trying to peel back the layers of pressure and emerge as MYSELF.
I've returned to this over and over since first reading it, and I've decided that it's just one of those things that I need to keep inside as a mantra, something to hang onto. A reminder that there is a self buried under all this stuff and I'd do well to honor her.
And so I give up. I can't do it all. I can't update here with the regularity I prefer, I can't keep my house clean, I can't keep the laundry folded, I can't seem to make family dinner happen, I can't make the bed, I can't pay the bills on time, I can't be away from Simon for more than a couple of hours at a time because he just won't take a bottle. This is chaos. I don't like chaos. I'm a big fan of order, of balance, but I just can't seem to find either. They are both elusive, like smoke burning through a life that looks nothing like this one.
And I'm lonely sometimes. I have so much to be grateful for, and yet the loneliness persists. I would say it's the human condition, but I don't know that for sure. So let's just say that it's my condition.
And yet I'm not unhappy. Because motherhood has stripped me of so much petty nonsense, and here I am, emerging as myself, with bags under my eyes, jeans that are way too big, a hopeless head of hair, unshaved legs, a runny nose (allergies? a cold brewing?), a novel writing itself in my head, lines of poems scrawled on random sheets of paper, stacks and stacks of books that I want to read, songs that play over and over in my head (including songs from Sesame Street). I am completely incoherent and that bothers me but at the same time I feel free. There is no time to doubt, only time to be and do and all those other weird verbs. Every day another layer is stripped away, because motherhood is an exercise in letting go.
Some big challenges are looming on the horizon, and I am anxious. Keep me in your thoughts? I'll try to report back more often in May. In the meantime, here's a picture of Simon, who is now five months old and just as red-headed and blue-eyed as he can be.
And let's not forget Charlie, who is (as you can see) so not a baby anymore.
I have never loved like this, nor have I ever felt so real or alive. It's love that makes me myself.