Babies.

Am having mixed feelings about babies lately.

Now is that the most crazy, mixed up thing I’ve posted on here ever, maybe?

Why would a newly single mama (p.s. when are you no longer newly single?  someone let me know) be thinking about babies?

I am 36 years old.  I have two beautiful children.  They are no longer babies.  I am single.  I am not looking for, nor will probably find myself in a relationship anytime soon.  I think I have done a pretty decent job raising my two girls.

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Some of my blogger friends have recently had babies, or about to have babies.  These blogger friends are in happy marriages.  They post pictures of beautiful sleeping babies and family togetherness and peaceful households.

This causes two big angry words to swirl in my heart.  They are called regret and envy.

Regret that I will never have that chance to be that family.  

Regret that I didn’t leave my husband earlier.

Regret that maybe because of all the chaos in my life, I didn’t get to appreciate that time more.  Too busy working to make ends meet, scraping to get by, dealing with an out of control relationship.

Regret that my biological clock has about stopped and I will never experience that feeling again.

Sometimes I think what it would have been like to have been a mother with a different husband.  Usually this super-human husband can do no wrong and has superhuman kindness powers.

I don’t want you to get the wrong idea.  I have very nice memories of my family.  I remember how my husband sat on his knees on the hard hospital floor and helped me through birthing our first girl.  I remember how he slept on the hospital chairs that night in a terrible position.  I remember how he drove home down the interstate at like 35 miles an hour because she was in the car.  I look back on pictures of the two of them playing together that first year.  He was smiling, I was smiling, she was smiling.

I remember the birth of our second girl.  I remember my contractions kicking in really hard and him being out at the car looking for his “medication”.  I remember he barely made it back to see her born.  I remember he cut the cord, but I also remember that he went home that night with promises to bring me breakfast first thing in the morning and I had to call him and wake him up at 11am and then he forgot my food.  I remember that I have no pictures of my second girls second year because we had no camera and life was too all consuming to worry about it.  Not so many smiling faces.  Life was so darn difficult then and I was an emotional mess.  For so long during those precious years I was an emotional mess and through it all trying to find that picture in my head of how our life should be and unable to make it happen.

 

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So here I am, seven months out.  I am healthier.  I am happier.  Though I may never trust enough to marry again.  If I did find the kind, loving man I imagine in those pictures in my head, it will be too late to do that happy, smiling, peaceful baby thing.

I never wanted to have anymore children.  I have spent the last five years telling people, “Nope, that’s it, two is just perfect for me”.

 

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So maybe it’s the age that’s getting me.  That biological clock of doom.  Maybe it’s the feeling like there is a second chance out there that is waiting for me.  The getting my confidence back part.  Maybe it’s equal parts both.

I am going to try to beat back that evil feeling of REGRET and also tend to that equally horrible thing called ENVY.

At 36, I still have a hell of a lot of life left to enjoy.  At five and seven my girls still have plenty of amazing years for us to enjoy (or at least until the age of 13 on).   We are busy right now, creating my dream family.  It looks a little different, definitely missing some testosterone, but it’s working for us.  We smile a lot.  There are more than enough pictures.  

No baby smells, no sucking motions with the mouth, no little tiny fingers in my hair, no snuggling into me nursing.

But also, no more diapers, no middle of the night feedings, no colicky nights, no stress of battling a marriage that wasn’t working and not healthy for the girls.

Oh, and to all my new blog mama’s.  I am so happy for you.  Being a mama is the best thing in the world and it is so fleeting that first year.  May you have more best of times and little worst of times.

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6 Comments

Filed under girls, single parenthood

6 responses to “Babies.

  1. Jen, I can SO relate to this post! The circumstances behind each of my boys’ births were polar opposite just like yours. I LOVE being pregnant. And I am so thankful that I’ve gotten to experience it twice. But my second pregnancy was definitely spoiled just like yours. My only saving grace was going through it with my then nine-year-old son. He enjoyed it with me every step of the way…well, right up until he was about to get more of an education on where babies come from than a nine-year-old should ever receive!

    And I LOVE babies. I too have given lots of thought to having another one with the love of my life, if he comes along in time. That one I’m just gonna have to wait and see.

    While I’m waiting, though, I enjoy other people’s babies as much as I can. All the perks, none of the disadvantages. If any of those new mama bloggers are close by to you, go get your fill of those sweet little toes (my favorite), the sweet little yawns, the amazing feeling of snuggling a baby up close against you. Then when it’s time to settle in for a long night, you’ll be back at your house, with your girls who can sleep all the way through the night!

    Wait and see with me, OK? My mom was 47 when she had me…and that was back in the dark ages as far as medical technology goes! So when it comes to my own personal timetable, we still have PLENTY of time!

    Oh, so much regret and envy. I know exactly what you’re talking about.

  2. I’m so very sorry to hear about the different experiences between the births of your two children (for your previous commenter Tricia as well).

    My mother has me and my sister but mom and dad were trying for another when he died. Age 33. She loves us very much, of course, but I know there’s a lot of pain she feels with both the loss of my dad and the loss of the future children they planned to have with each other.

    I know it’s not the exact same situation but I know where you’re coming from. I think your emotions are perfectly natural and anyone who visits your blog regularly totally gets who you are and understands your “regret” and “envy.”

    I hope every day gets a little brighter for you.

  3. I relate, my husband had a vasectomy last year, our 3 kids are 12, 6 and 3.
    I know we will never have more children. I love our life most of the time.

    The thing is, even in the best of circumstances we all forget to savor the wonder of it all. I look at the baby pictures of my youngest child and sigh thinking geez, why did I have to be so stressed out that year. I have the regret feelings the most with my oldest, who was born when I was 22 and despite the best intentions, I messed up at times and he was impacted.

    Regret will get me nowhere, so I try to pack it in for today and the living waiting for me in the next room.

    Love your blog, btw-

  4. CP

    This is a beautiful and honest post. And thank you for letting yourself show honestly. Regret and envy are hard feelings but they are real and we all have them.

  5. I think that no matter what you have those feelings of wondering about another baby. It is very bittersweet. But you do have two absolutely gorgeous girls. 🙂

  6. Oh my gosh, me too! I have been having some kind of biological clock-ticking dilemma, up until recently. I am 39, so I am constantly reminded that I don’t have too much time left, before I wither up. *sigh*

    But then I come to realize that I am finally happy (although a little lonely at times) with my life the way it is – just my daughter and me. To be honest, I would not want to go through pregnancy and have another baby unmarried (been there), and I don’t think it would be fair to any potential spouse if I could not/would not be able to place before my eldest child. She has to come first.

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