I had a bad dream last night.
Like, one of those super vivid, really long and involved, detailed and straight up WEIRD pregnancy dreams, that wasn't quite nightmare, but woke me up with feelings of anxiety anyway.
Thankfully, it was 5:28 am when I woke, and I could feel husband stirring next to me in the last few minutes before his alarm. I made him snuggle me for the remaining two minutes before his alarm began chiming.
I won't go into details about the dream itself, mainly because it was insane and just like any other dream, the details began to fade just as soon as I awoke.
But the feelings, those feelings remained long enough for me to feel the need to thank my husband for what he does to provide for us, and to inspire this post today.
I have had a few, well, rough days this week. If we are friends on the book of faces, you already know that yesterday my sweet daughter went from a perfectly happy mood one moment in Target yesterday to the most ridiculous meltdown she has ever had in probably her entire life.
In the main aisle.
As we approached the checkout.
We are talking loud screams, LOUD screams, tears running down her face and splashing onto the cart, snot bubbles, stiff body arching...the whole nine yards. About what? I have no idea.
But it was enough for me to wheel her into the corner by the cat food and try to stand my ground about her not being able to stand up in the cart. And to you know, not give into some ridiculous tantrum, etc.
I won't say I was embarrassed, per say, but I was certainly bewildered, and I wished I had a better explanation for the (what seemed like) 200 other moms with perfectly nicely behaved toddlers sitting in their cart baskets than the shrug and look of confusion that I did have at my disposal.
The tantrum lasted 30 minutes or so? Yup. Seriously.
So, that was fun.
But before that, earlier this week, I had a few tough days too. This pregnancy I have had a LOT more mood swings than when I was pregnant with Ev. And on Sunday, after a few bouts of crazy tears, and generally just feeling down and in doubt of myself and my ability to parent TWO babies - my husband actually ordered me out of the house for some alone time.
This from the man who "understands" my occasional requests for alone time, but still doesn't really get it looked at me and said - "You clearly need a break. Why don't you go shopping or something?"
He was right, I did need a break, but it still didn't solve my mood.
So, I have been in a funk.
Stressed about all of the things we need to do before this baby arrives, concerned about the constant state of messiness in our house, disappointed by the fact that we sometimes go out to eat three days in a row because I just can't get the energy together to make a decent meal in time for a decent bed time, and still having anxiety over moving my baby into a big girl bed, though she has been doing surprisingly well.
These are all things that I know would be minor on the stress scale if I weren't pregnant. I consider myself to be a person who is in pretty good control of my emotions (except for that one time in Groups class in grad school) when I am not pregnant. I have pretty good perspective and once I get my feelings out, then I am fine. But, in this pregnancy, those coping skills haven't always worked the same.
This dream though. This dream finally seems to have snapped me out of it.
After waking up, I am still just feeling so grateful for all that I have in my life. As hard as it is somedays.
So, though I did not participate in the Facebook "post something you are thankful for every day" business (I knew I would never keep up with it) - here, on the last day of Novemeber, are just a few things I am so very thankful for in my life.
- My husband. He seriously knows me better than anyone else, and though (as my friend and I were just chatting about last night) sometimes I feel the strong desire to send him out to "play in traffic" I am so grateful to have met him and to have his life intertwined in mine for 12 years. He is the funniest person I know, is becoming more of a cheesy and devoted father to our daughter every day, is a happy and supportive provider for our family, and makes me feel loved, even at my very worst.
- My daughter. She brings a smile to my face and laughter to my lips every single day. She makes my heart sing and fly and ache, sometimes all at the same time, just from the looks that she gives me. I adore the way she is learning so much from the world around her, and the tiniest connections she makes and immense pride in herself that she feels when learning or accomplishing something new makes my whole being just surge with love for her.
- Baby Bump. Though pregnancy is admittedly not my most favorite state of being, the though of another little life in there, growing perfectly, makes me so grateful for all that I am continually given in this life. The emotions and glee at feeling this baby kick me from the inside never fails to make me chuckle to myself and wonder at all the possibilities that await this little life that we are all so excited to meet.
- The ability to stay at home. Though some days I feel decidedly ungrateful about the fact that I don't have an office to escape to, or a crowd of colleagues to chat with at my disposal - or you know, just some computer time where I don't have to bat toddler hands away from the keyboard...I am overwhelmingly so amazed that I get to spend all day every day with my baby girl. There are no "mental breaks" in this job and it is undoubtedly the most challenging job I have ever had. Ever. But, I enjoy a challenge. And I enjoy the hell out of the flexibility and possibilities that are afforded me in this role. The tiny moments that I get to be a part of, both good and bad, have taught me more than any other experience in my life - and I use my education from all those other experiences every day with Evelyn. I know so many women would love to be in the position to make this same choice, and though it is not without sacrifice, I am continually amazed that I am here, living the life I dreamed about when I was a little girl. It is easy to complain about it, just like any other job, but I really try to actively recognize the privilege that it is, along with the challenges.
- My friends. I have never been good at keeping in touch with my friends. It is legitimately one of my biggest faults as a person and probably something that I feel the most guilt about. It is now worse than ever because I don't keep the same schedule with the majority of them. It is so much harder to jump on gchat and check in. But, when I do get to talk to them, I am always so grateful to have been able to meet these people in my life. The varying perspectives and experiences that I get to hear about make me think and feel like I am still engaged in adult topics, though so much of my mind at this stage in life revolves around "baby things". I am also so grateful that they give me so much grace on the whole keeping in touch with them thing. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
- My parents. I can always call my parents in a crisis. Or on a bad day. or on a good day. But seriously, though I would never describe my parents, as many do, as my "best friends" (because they are my parents y'all...not my friends) they provide me support and encouragement in the best way of anyone in my life. They are the most concise perspective givers EVER. I can rattle on and on about a problem, and they chuckle and give me one sentence of advice that seems to just clear everything up and settle the issue. I don't know how they do it, but I am grateful for that all the time and can only hope to be able to give my kiddos that same perspective as they grow.
Naturally, I could go on and on, but this post is already a novel, and it is FRIDAY.
Thanks for reading, just writing this post has been cathartic and encouraging.
Have a GREAT weekend friends!
Evelyn Rae is 16 months old, I am 29 weeks along with Baby Bump
...and I am also so grateful for technology and blogging. I would have one hell of a journal if this space didn't exist for me, I will tell you that.