After this weekend, I have no doubt that this idea of pregnancy hormones are a real thing.
I don’t know why I thought I was immune to it but this weekend is a prime example of how crazy I can be in my head.
If I were honest, I didn’t want hormones to be a reality for me.
I wanted to be immune to the changes because there is still a small (or large) part of my thought process that doesn’t want to succumb to emotions.
I fear negative emotions and how my reaction to having a negative emotion reflects on me as a person.
Admitting that I had a weekend of mood swings feels like I’m a weak victim, lumped into the ‘pregnant woman’ excuse that I thought I could ‘fight’.
I am humbled, which makes me want to cry.
Actually, as I’m writing this (on the airplane) I am holding back tears over how sad I feel for how powerless I am over all these things that I’m experiencing in my head.
The worst feeling of all is that I feel so alone in this rollercoaster ride of emotions and I don’t really want to bring anyone along for the ride because I know rationally that this is all just a ball of emotion full of extreme feelings rebounding in my head.
Once I am back in my comfort zone of home, in my regular routine, my nerves will settle down and I will see how ‘off’ my thinking was this past weekend (and even right now).
We traveled to be with my in-laws for some major life celebrations- graduation, wedding, 65th birthday… a weekend I didn’t want to miss.
Although sitting here traveling home, I am filled with frustration that I couldn’t control myself better.
Going into this weekend, I felt ‘off’.
Knowing I have felt the shift in my emotions this past week, I began talking about my fears of this weekend being ‘out of my comfort zone’ and praying about how I was going to make it through.
How do I be around extended family and be pleasant when I feel such disconnect within?
I chose to stay quiet.
Listen as much as I could.
Go with the flow.
Not have too many thoughts.
It seemed to work for the most part.
Unfortunately, this guarded approach wore me out.
Feeling tired from the back and forth of chatter in my head.
I cried when I felt my heart fall heavy.
I laughed during an enjoyable conversation.
I became angry when I didn’t feel supported.
I threw a temper tantrum when I felt challenged.
I got short with my conversation when I felt threatened.
My body grew hot when I noticed I was thinking thoughts that were rooted in fear.
I woke up tired after a full day of activity the day before.
It’s really uncomfortable and difficult to feel so out of control and living in a vulnerable space on my inside when I am in a situation like this and yet, I knew I needed to show up.
I don’t feel I handled a few situations well and sit here with regret for what I could have done differently.
Why did I say that? Was it really that important that I jumped into the conversation in that way? How could I have said it differently? Why am I giving in to the fear that surrounds me when we talk about this topic (having a newborn)?
There are so many different ways I could have approached this weekend and yet, I succumbed.
What I have learned though is that I:
- am hormonal.
- am tired.
- feel uncomfortable at times in my body.
- need my own space.
- become overwhelmed easily.
- need to learn how to take care of myself on a different level now that I am pregnant.
Feelings of regret and embarrassment sit within me today. Simply because I couldn’t control what I was feeling and wasn’t more attentive to the space I needed to give myself when I felt this wave coming on.
I am pregnant. I am hormonal. There is not much I can do to stop the emotions from whipping all around me.
What can I do?
I can slow down.
Take care of myself by getting rest, journaling, going for walks, keeping my life simple.
Mother protector is taking over my thoughts and certain decisions on how we are going to do things are laced with fear.
I want to be a good mom and I don’t want to mess up my child.
This overwhelming sense of responsibility has washed over me and I wish someone else would just tell me what to do because I’m scared of making a mistake.
There have been a few topics of conversation between Hubby and me that haven’t gone so well.
I am noticing a pattern within these conversations that string together irrational thoughts, beliefs, and emotions which only intensify the issue.
Mainly these comments are around parenting.
I have NO idea what I’m in for with having a newborn.
I am trying to learn from those around me and I really want to try to do things with Maxee that are for the best for her.
Am I putting too much pressure on myself though?
Am I letting the ideal overtake the rational?
As much as I want to hear people’s experiences of what worked (and didn’t work) for them, I notice myself becoming more clingy to certain approaches and standoffish towards others.
When I am liking an idea or approach then I seem to throw my stake in the sand and claim that for how “I” want to do things.
Then I become anxious about talking to Hubby about it because I don’t think he will understand or be on board.
I do my research by talking with friends, reading books, writing, and spending time in prayer. Not much of an evidence-based approach, while Hubby is more factual with his decision making and wants to see the data and research.
Clearly, I have no idea what I’m doing. I have never done this before.
I’m looking for some security in the unknown that is up ahead. I’m trying to get as comfortable as I can with the big “?” of what our life is going to be like and how will we approach an infant?
I want to know and choose the approach that will be best for our baby to confirm that I’m a good mother and ultimately, that I can, in fact, do this thing called parenting.
Looking for certainty… where there is none.
So I spend time talking with friends and thinking through how I’d like to approach motherhood and parenting. I come to my conclusion and then I have to remember that there are two of us in this parenting relationship.
First, he has his own views on topics, and I find it challenging to live in a healthy partnership while navigating these unknown waters.
Why do I get so set on a certain plan (knowing it will most likely change) and then upset when Hubby is not on the same page as me?
For one, I feel scared. I want so much to have a good experience of motherhood and don’t want to regret doing (or not doing) something.
What if this is my only baby? I don’t want to mess it up.
Second, I feel unsupported. Selfishly, I want him to jump on board with anything I want to do- just be along for the ride. In reality, though, this is his ride too. This is his child too. I need to respect his process as much as he is respecting mine.
Third, I don’t feel trusted. Because my decision-making process is different than his, I don’t feel as though he trusts me to make a decision for us.
What this does to me, it makes me want to shut down.
I want to throw up my hands and stop trying and instead give him all the control and just do what he says.
Either I’m in control and he just comes along… or he’s in control and I don’t concern myself with any of this.
Not the most healthy, or rational, way of thinking.
Thankfully, Hubby is very much of the approach of wanting to discuss and be on the same page before we move forward with a decision. He likes the process of bringing ideas and facts to the table and talking options through.
So how do I engage with him IN the process as opposed to hearing something that sounds good, deciding on it for myself and then claiming it to be what I want to Hubby?
Allowing the process to unravel.
Recognizing these aren’t decisions that are made quickly
Giving myself space for the discomfort of the conversations to take place and know that I can always table something I don’t feel comfortable with until another day.
What gets me riled up?
Talking about this with other people when I’m feeling defensive or uncomfortable. Feeling as though I have to prove or protect something in a conversation.
What am I learning?
- How to have adult, healthy conversations
- How to engage with a partner in making decisions
- Letting go of ‘my way or the highway’ thinking
- Not shuttering with inferiority to a one-sided approach
Hubby and I adjusted from our single lives to being married.
Now we are adjusting from making decisions together about ourselves to making decisions about another human.
I am uncomfortable. I do not like feeling stretched and challenged to change.
Yet, this is where I will grow.