somemother

part forum. part confession. part celebration.

50. Wonderful, and Treacherous March 4, 2012

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 11:12 pm
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 34 years old.

I am married.

I have 1 child. He is 5.

I work full-time outside the home, and full-time in the home too.

I am lower-middle, or maybe just lower (who defines these?), but I used to be upper-middle, before the recession.

I live urban.

I rent, but I used to own. I can’t imagine going through the stress and terror that buying another house would be, even if we could get a mortgage (and I’m sure we couldn’t). That makes me really sad. 

I completed graduate. But I should have stopped at bachelors. 

I am straight but am also a friend. 

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: white American; British/German ancestry.

 

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

  1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing. My parents, who believed I could do anything. That kind of support and enthusiasm has been both wonderful, and treacherous, because it has made failing inevitably worse (emotionally anyway) than it might otherwise have been.
  2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through. Soak it in, the preschool years are so awesome. Sleep will come later. Everyone learns how to use a toilet eventually. 
  3. Something that concerns me about my child. That he won’t have good (or good enough) friends during the school years. (My own childhood!)
  4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far). Every time I yell at him for some stupid small thing, when the real reason is my own tiredness.
  5. What annoys me most about other mothers. When they treat kids like they’re unintelligent or hip-mothering like a status symbol. 
  6. I am happiest when playing with my kid – far away from the house, where I can relax better. Like camping or day trips somewhere.
  7. I am saddest when I think about how we still don’t have child #2 and it’s already been five years. Why isn’t my damn body pregnant yet??? Also when I think about how much regret I carry around, all the time. I feel like there’s a huge rain cloud following me around, even when I’m super happy. 
  8. My biggest fear. I am terrified of him dying in some freak accident.
  9. I am ashamed of my past – trying to be successful in the traditional sense (lawyer, house) and failing (combo of laid off/quit career, foreclosure). My current – spending too much time gaming (after my son is in bed) and not enough time working on other interests.
  10. Something I need to forgive. My old bosses, the partners at the firm, for throwing me under the bus. I’m not sure I ever will forgive them, I pretty much hate their guts and want to throw up every time I think about them. 
  11. Something I wish I could say to someone. DIAF, old bosses! 
  12. Something I have never told anyone. How I thought about suicide a lot while I was still a lawyer. 
  13. Something I am trying to change about myself. My weight. 
  14. My biggest accomplishment. Being a pretty damn awesome mom, so far. 
  15. I wish that I had been more clear about my deepest values and priorities when I was 20 instead of pursuing goals that were sexy and exciting at the time but which got me nowhere.
  16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting. Life is all about learning, and forgiveness is important. 
  17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting. It’s really important to work hard (like my dad does) but it’s also really important to stop and relax (like my dad does not do).
  18. How I would describe my faith life. Latecomer to spirituality, but it is a sweet and precious thing to be part of a faith community in which you truly feel at home.
  19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year. So many things – stable employment for husband; pregnant; better garden; more on top of things. Hopefully will have moved on literally and emotionally from all the career/finance drama of the past several years. 
  20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above. I recently read that stating your goals/dreams out loud makes it less likely you will accomplish them. But at the risk of that, I really want to share this: I have a big dream of following in my dad’s footsteps and being a full-time farmer. I really hope I can make it come true. It would be such a great accomplishment and legacy to pass on to my child(ren!).
  21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments. What is your dream? What do you believe success is?
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49. I Am Grateful Almost Every Day For It All February 4, 2012

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 12:19 am
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you)

I am 29 years old.
I am married.
I have 1 child. Here are their ages/genders: 4/F
I work part-time.
I am lower middle (in my area, but I guess some geographical regions might consider us upper middle).
I live suburban.
I own.
I completed undergrad.
I am straight-ish.
Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: white.
 
NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU
    1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing.  Independence, DIY ethos.
    2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through.  Be patient, give YOURSELF a time out if you must but try to be understanding to your child instead of just insisting on a certain behavior.
    3. Something that concerns me about my child.  Cavities.
    4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far).  Spanking and yelling.
    5. What annoys me most about other mothers.  Putting infants in daycare.
    6. I am happiest when I have a little work but can get it done and hang out peacefully with my kid and have had some time to work out, too.
    7. I am saddest when I have no office work, my kid is acting up and I am feeling the ennui.
    8. My biggest fear.  My emotional weirdness will affect my kid more than my love and positive attention.
    9. I am ashamed of having hit my kid.
    10. Something I need to forgive.  I have already forgiven being hit by dad and ex-husband, neglected emotionally by parents at critical times and cheated on by husband (with other men, so it wasn’t that bad).
    11. Something I wish I could say to someone.  I am often so lonely and not as together as I seem (I do a really good job of keeping it together on the outside.)
    12. Something I have never told anyone.  Nothing, I have confessed or told one thing or another to someone.
    13. Something I am trying to change about myself.  Being calm and more stoic.
    14. My biggest accomplishment.  Marathons and giving birth with no drugs? Making it through college living on my own, paying my own way after marriage at 18, abuse and divorce? Doing my own legal work for my divorce at age 20?
    15. I wish I had more answers.
    16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting.  It’s OK to be a nosy, butting in mom. Better than being hands off and having the kid be adrift. Stick up for your kid.
    17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting.  Don’t hit your kid.
    18. How I would describe my faith life.  Meh.
    19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year.  Kid’s cavities will be filled and she won’t have more, I’ll weigh 10 lbs less and have my emotions under control.
    20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above.  I am grateful almost every day for it all.
    21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments. How on earth do people manage to have happy lives, with time for themselves and all there is to do, when they have more than one kid?
 

46. I Don’t Know Who I Am November 13, 2011

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 11:13 pm
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 32 years old.

I am married.

I have 1 child (trying for a second): she’s 1.5 years old.

I work full-time.

I am upper-middle.

I live urban. 

I own.

I completed graduate.

I am straight.

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: nothing relevant.

 

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

  1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing.  Being the oldest of three girls, made me independent and responsible, but also bossy and competitive.
  2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through.  You are the best mother for your child! Something my yoga teacher once told me that makes me feel better on those days when I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing.
  3. Something that concerns me about my child.  How our nomadic lifestyle will affect her; by the time she’s two, she will have lived in 3 different countries, on 3 different continents!
  4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far).  Going back to work. I’m very fortunate to have had a year of paid maternity leave, but going back to work 6 months ago completely broke my heart, and it’s still upsets me to spend the day doing ultimately totally insignificant work when I could be raising my child. I just wish mothers had more options…
  5. What annoys me most about other mothers.  The judgmental attitudes. Everyone has their own personal circumstances, and their own style of parenting, yet we constantly criticize and look down on those who do things differently from the way we think they should be done. Every mother does what’s best for her baby, and it’s absolutely not our place to criticize or condemn her for choices.
  6. I am happiest when I’m snuggling with my baby girl.
  7. I am saddest when I leave the house to go to work in the morning.
  8. My biggest fear. That something bad will happen to my daughter.
  9. I am ashamed of the way I often disrespect my husband. I think Dads in general get a lot of disrespect, with the common line of thinking that “mother knows best.” I’m really trying to learn that my husband has his own parenting style, that he doesn’t always need to do things the way I do them, and that I can’t on the one hand constantly criticize his parenting style, and on the other berate him for not participating enough with our daughter.
  10. Something I need to forgive.  My mom, for not being perfect, for choosing to develop a life of her own when I was a teenager and needed her the most.
  11. Something I wish I could say to someone.  I forgive you.
  12. Something I have never told anyone.  I don’t know who I am.
  13. Something I am trying to change about myself.  I am really really trying to chill out and not be so uptight about everything.
  14. My biggest accomplishment.  Creating life!
  15. I wish I could quit my job and be a stay at home mom. I’m all for feminism and equality, but I think something went wrong somewhere, and now women are totally looked down on if they choose to opt out of a career and stay home and raise their kids. It kills me that we pay someone to spend the days with my daughter, and essentially raise her, when I so desperately want to.
  16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting.  To tell my daughter everyday that I love her, and make sure she knows it.
  17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting.  Dads are everything to their daughters.
  18. How I would describe my faith life.  I believe in goodness.
  19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year.  I hope to have had a second baby, and be on maternity leave so I can be at home with my kids.
  20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above.  I am a firm believer in living a healthy lifestyle, and have so far managed to stick with this philosophy with my daughter: cloth diapers, lots of outdoor time and physical exercise, no tv, no sugar, limited processed foods, etc.
  21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments:  How do you find time for yourself? What do you do that’s just for you?
 

44. Even When It’s Awful It’s Pretty Wonderful October 30, 2011

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 11:05 pm
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 36 years old.

I am married.

I have 1 child. Here are their ages/genders: 2/F We are also trying to conceive a 2nd child.

I work full-time.

I am upper-middle.

I live urban.

I own.

I completed undergrad.

I am straight but not narrow.

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: I don’t think it’s important, but I’m Caucasian.

 

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

  1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing. My dad abandoned me when I was really young. It’s only as an adult that I realize how much of an effect that has had on my life.
  2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through. If today was a bad day, it’s only one day over the course of a lifetime. You’re not likely to inflict lasting damage in a single day.
  3. Something that concerns me about my child. I worry that I’m spending so much time avoiding turning into my mother that I’m going to f**k her up in new and interesting ways, ways I did not imagine possible.
  4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far). She was going through the 8-month sleep regression. I yelled at her to go the f**k to sleep, long before the book made it cool.
  5. What annoys me most about other mothers. Why the mom-on-mom hate? We’re all just doing the best we can with what we’ve got, hoping our kids don’t end up on the news for all the wrong reasons.
  6. I am happiest when it’s the weekend and we’re all lolling about in our bed as a family, cuddling and giggling.
  7. I am saddest when the weekday starts and it’s a whole lot more sleeps until we can loll about in our bed as a family, cuddling and giggling.
  8. My biggest fear. I have nightmares about something terrible happening to my daughter as a small child. I can’t shake it.
  9. I am ashamed of how hard I am on my husband sometimes. He’s a good man and a good dad, it’s not HIS fault I feel tired and stretched too thin. He really does pull his weight around here, I just always feel put upon because there’s SO MUCH to do.
  10. Something I need to forgive. My dad. Not because he deserves it, but because the anger isn’t doing me any favours.
  11. Something I wish I could say to someone. I wish I could tell my mom to back the hell off without her taking it as an attack on her very soul.
  12. Something I have never told anyone.
  13. Something I am trying to change about myself.
  14. My biggest accomplishment. Being happy. Most of the time.
  15. I wish I had unlimited resources so I could work part-time and spend more time on myself and my family. I never thought I’d hear myself say this, but I really love being a mother. I wish I could do it more than part-time.
  16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting. Don’t lie. All it teaches your children is not to trust you.
  17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting. It gets better. You’re responsible for bringing this person here, be there for them you selfish bastard.
  18. How I would describe my faith life. I’m agnostic, leaning towards atheism. I’m pretty sure there’s nothing happening when we’re done in this life, but I can’t explain why it all happened so I’m not completely discounting the possibility that a divine, celestial being set off the Big Bang. But I’m certain the rest of it happened as the scientists say it did.
  19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year. I hope I’ll be holding or at least very far along with our next baby.
  20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above. I was going to be a single career woman. That was my plan. Then I met a man whose baby I wanted to have. And then I had that baby and fell more in love than I ever imagined possible. Even when it’s awful it’s pretty wonderful.
  21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments. “What has motherhood changed about you?”
 

37. When I Have New Shoes September 23, 2011

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 10:10 pm
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 33 years old.

I am married.

I have 1 child. Here are their ages/genders: M – 10 months/3 weeks

I stay home.

I am middle.

I live urban.

I rent.

I completed undergrad.

I am straight.

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background.

 

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

  1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing.  Very international – between UK and West Africa.  But not in my country of origin, so feel little confused about who I actually am.
  2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through.  Enjoy it.  It’s difficult.  Try and keep records of everything!
  3. Something that concerns me about my child.  Nothing 🙂
  4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far).  He had to have surgery about 3 months ago and was put under a general.  Was a wreck.
  5. What annoys me most about other mothers. Not all – but some are SO anal about EVERYTHING!
  6. I am happiest when I’m with my boy.  When I’m in London.  When I’m with my parents.  When I have new shoes 🙂
  7. I am saddest when Hub and I argue and don’t speak for days a time.
  8. My biggest fear is something will happen to my boy and I won’t be able to help him and that when we decide to get pregnant again it will take a long time again!
  9. I am ashamed of the fact that I have a nanny.  Full-time help.  I still do a LOT myself – but sometimes I’m embarrassed.
  10. Something I need to forgive. Nasty things that have been said to me.  Forgiving is easy, it’s the forgetting that’s hard.
  11. Something I wish I could say to someone. WHY are you three so cliquey and unfriendly?
  12. Something I have never told anyone.  I love Hub, but sometimes wonder if I made the right decision.
  13. Something I am trying to change about myself.  I am trying to be more ‘on top’ of things at home.  Especially since I don’t work anymore.
  14. My biggest accomplishment.
  15. I wish I could still earn my own money without going out to work!
  16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting.  Mums usually do know best.  SHHHH – don’t tell her!
  17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting.  Dad have to be present and showing love through gifts only works for a short time.
  18. How I would describe my faith life.  I believe.  But I don’t think I have to go to a church, temple or mosque to show that I believe.  And I certainly don’t think in-laws forcing their beliefs on you will make you believe more!
  19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year.  I hope I’ll be pregnant again.
  20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above.
  21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments.
 

33. You’ll Get Used to It September 2, 2011

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 10:50 pm
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 24 years old.

I am single.

I have 1 child. Here are their ages/genders: 16m/F

I stay home for now.

I am lower.

I live urban.

I rent.

I completed high school. Working toward college.

I am straight.

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: I’m black with white (european) and latin background.

 

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

  1. The most significant aspect of my upbringing. Didn’t really have much of a father figure, my dad was there physically, but it was as if he wasn’t.
  2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through. Don’t ever think that it will get easier, ’cause it won’t. It will get different with the stages though, but you’ll get used to IT.
  3. Something that concerns me about my child. That her father is semi absent in her life because we don’t live together and that she’ll have daddy and abandonment issues.
  4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far). Being too tired to bring her outside.
  5. What annoys me most about other mothers. That they think that they know best and they can not be wrong cause they’ve been doing this longer than others.
  6. I am happiest when. I’m with my child.
  7. I am saddest when. I’m not with her.
  8. My biggest fear. That one day I might not be able to provide for her and to attend to her needs. That I die before she can take care of herself.
  9. I am ashamed of. Not being able to be the mother that I wanted/need to be because of my current situation.
  10. Something I need to forgive. My parents for not being the parents that I needed them to be.
  11. Something I wish I could say to someone. I do.
  12. Something I have never told anyone.
  13. Something I am trying to change about myself. Procrastination/laziness.
  14. My biggest accomplishment. My child.
  15. I wish. That change will change for the better and that I’ll always be there for my child.
  16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting. You got to put your child’s needs before your own.
  17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting. That a father is as important as a mother in a child’s life.
  18. How I would describe my faith life. Confused.
  19. Something I hope will be different for me by this time next year. That I’ll get back on track and that I’ll be where I wanted to be in life or at least almost there.
  20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above. I’m a survivor.
  21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the comments.
 

32. Once Lost, Can Love Grow Back? August 31, 2011

Filed under: Story — somemother @ 10:41 pm
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ESTABLISHING YOURSELF (a few details that help somemothers know what they have in common with you).

I am 34 years old.

I am currently married, but am possibly facing divorce after being together for eleven years.

I have a daughter. Here is her age: she will be 7 years old in 3 months time.

have been a full-time housewife and then a stay-at-home mother since I got married and since my daughter was born.

I live in a busy metropolitan city, in a society where status and wealth for some reason matters more than personality.

I completed my undergraduate studies in Psychology and Economics.

Of note about my ethnicity and/or cultural background: ¾ Chinese and ¼ Dutch. 

 

NOW, TWENTY QUESTIONS ABOUT YOU

  1. The most significant aspect of my upbringingMy parents were divorced when I was three years old, because my father was a womanizer and a gambler.  I was raised by my mother, who placed an extremely high importance on education and being financially independent.  My mother went on to marry twice more, but all ended in divorce.  Because of that, I grew up believing that men can’t be trusted.
  2. My best advice to mothers about to enter the stage of child rearing that I just went through.   Chill, try to take it easy on yourself.  Don’t beat yourself over a small mistake or oops moment.  And never fear that your child won’t love you back if he or she happens to be difficult during the first few months.  My daughter used to prefer her nanny when she was a baby; she always struggled out of my arms, and I was never able to rock her to sleep in my arms.  I used to hate myself for that… thinking I must have been a bad mother.  But a child knows when he or she’s loved and who loves him/her the most.  I think it was at 5 months old, when suddenly she just decided to stick to me like a glue.
  3. Something that concerns me about my child. My impending divorce… it breaks my heart to know that she will not be able to have her mommy and daddy living under the same roof.  I worry of how my divorce would affect her in the long run: in how she views relationships and the opposite sex, in how she carries herself being a child of divorce when her friends are not, and in how she envisions marriage and family life later on.  I also wished I had given her a sibling…  I am an only child.  Growing up being an only child was tough for me because I felt so much expectations coming from my parents.  As I get older, I often wished I had a sibling to share my concerns and feelings, especially when it comes to worrying about my parents’ health.
  4. My absolute worst mothering moment (so far).  It is so easy to take for granted, that my daughter would always be the way she is, that at times when she clung to me or wanted to spend time with me, I too often brushed her aside, say, “Later, Mommy’s busy right now.”  Those moments, once passed, can never be repeated.  I regret the times when I failed to cherish moments that seemed inconsequential.  Time flies when it comes to how quickly our children grow.  It is very easy to miss it if you don’t pay attention.
  5. What annoys me most about other mothers. Mothers who are very competitive and think very highly of themselves. Their children always have to be the best: go to the best schools, get the best grades, do the most extracurricular activities, and achieve various developmental milestones much earlier than other kids.  These mothers, proud of how they raise their children, often believe that their way is the only correct way of parenting.  They look down on other mothers who do things differently than they do (for example, staying-at-home vs. working moms), not realizing that there are moms with different beliefs, and there are also moms bound by circumstances in their lives.
  6. I am happiest when I hear my daughter laughs.
  7. I am saddest when something or somebody hurts my child’s feelings.  My mother instinct immediately kicks in and wants to protect her.  To tell her that she is loved.
  8. My biggest fear is if my daughter is harmed in any way.  And if somehow I passed on before I could fulfill my responsibility in preparing her to stand on her own two feet.
  9. I am ashamed of a lot more than I care to admit.  Of letting problems between me and my husband pile higher and higher until it has become an insurmountable mountain.  Of not being able to give a good example to her of how a marriage life should be.
  10. Something I need to forgiveI need to forgive my father for being the kind of husband to my mother and for the kind of father that he was to me.
  11. Something I wish I could say to someone. I wish I could tell my husband how much I regret not paying more attention to his needs earlier.  I wish I could tell my mother not to worry so much over me.
  12. Something I have never told anyone.
  13. Something I am trying to change about myself.  I’m trying to love myself more.  To not expect myself to be perfect all the time and to not beat myself whenever I make mistakes.  I’m learning to accept that there are things that I’m good at, and there are also things that I’m just not good at… and that’s ok.
  14. My biggest accomplishment.  Having a daughter who is kind-hearted, full of empathy, always cheerful and excited to learn and try on new things.  There are times when I am just in awe… and so thankful to God, that I, who am so negative and anxious-ridden, am blessed with a daughter that’s so different to me in every (good) way!
  15. I wish for good health for my family, for reconciliation of my marriage, for a closer relationship with God.
  16. Something my relationship with my mother has taught me about parenting. The importance of praise: never punish, always encourage.  And that it is okay to make mistakes.
  17. Something my relationship with my father has taught me about parenting. That even your own father can treat you like nothing more than an atm machine.  Action speaks louder than words.
  18. How I would describe my faith life. I am a Christian.  I need to have more faith to “walk by faith and not by sight.”  To spend more time with God, and to be more patient when it comes to His timing.
  19.  Something I hope will be different for me by this time next yearI hope by next year I would already be accepted to the school of my choice (I would like to go back to school) and that I don’t cry as much anymore.
  20. Something important about my story that hasn’t been captured by the questions above.  I am an introvert, socially awkward despite my outer appearance.  When people see me, they tend to see only the outside.  Of how I live comfortably and how money is not an issue.  Of how could I be crying when my situation is still “much better” compared to other people. It’s so easy to judge people who looked like they have everything as having a life that’s equally perfect, and that there can’t possibly be anything that are worth their complaining about.  Few people realize that problems and trials do not discriminate.  I believe that each person has his or her own cross to bear.
  21. BONUS: A question you would like to see added to this list that readers can respond to in the commentsDo you believe that once lost, love could grow back?