Friday, June 23, 2017

Deeper Dog Days

Last Pregnant Summer
Last Pregnant Summer
Last Pregnant Summer

I am bored to tears of my own broken records, but it's been rough.  My kids who have historically gotten along pretty well have become prone to teasing and bickering, and there are just no breaks for the tired pregnant lady.  So far this summer everyone's home all the time, minus two weeks of swimming lessons, which gave some structure, but not much that I could call "breaks."

I did break down and buy a $30 inflatable pool, which has been good for giving kids something to do, but has not done a thing to reduce the fighting.

I'm sure I'm not done evolving, but I am so much more able to let life roll like water off a duck's back than I would have been 5-10 years ago.

This morning the baby (who got pseudonynm-ed the Duke, but I call him Squishy in real life), pooped in the tub, and I just sang a song about how it's not an emergency if it doesn't require an ER visit while I cleaned it up.  It's extra work, it's exhausting, but there's no resources in me to turn it into drama.

Anemia and low blood pressure are back with a vengeance.  I get short of breath and dizzy just standing up.

So, in that state of "I can't think of anything more unpleasant than trying to find clothes that won't hurt to wear and spending my energy getting into them," I indulged in some long-term planning in my pajamas this morning.  It was a really rough, loosely shaped 7-8 year plan.  But I'm giddy about it.

Because if I can make it to the other, more human, side of a last pregnancy, I can go on being human and having ambitions and goals without ever being T-boned by a pregnancy again.  6 pregnancies have pretty well decimated the last 12 years of my life, as far as personal goals, dreams, and ambitions go.  I do not manage to have them, let alone foster them, while pregnant.  So, is that worth it?  Well, I wouldn't ever change anything to un-have any of my kids.  I absolutely would make different choices to re-prioritize my education and goals way back in the days of being a newlywed though.  If, for example, I had insisted on prioritizing my own goals as a newlywed, I could have completed a masters degree instead of working a soul-sucking desk job for 2.5 years.  That would have left me eligible to apply for a PhD program while Renn was in Dental school.  For most of that we would have had one 1 kid, which is hard, but consider that now I'm having to manage 6 kids if I go back for a doctorate.  Doesn't compare.

It was dumb, fear-based decision making that led to 4 of the roughest years of my life, holed up in a cave of an apartment trying desperately not to atrophy beyond recognition.  Treating myself as nearly less-than-human and waiting for things to happen to me in order to start living.  Top that off with the skeletal and shrinking support system we had as a family at that time, and it was just unnecessarily rough. I would never advocate for anyone to replicate my path.

But, hey - I can still control/influence the future.  So sometimes I explore options and their timelines instead of adequately supervising my zoo.  It gives me just enough buoyancy to feel a flicker of hope and resiliency.  22-ish weeks to go.

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