Maternity leave has begun, wherein life revolves around waiting for this egg to hatch, and I question the wisdom of having so much time on my hands in such a wacky emotional state. It’s only been two days and already I waver from one minute being completely engrossed in organizing the house (wow, this mania comes in handy to purge useless stuff, but I hope I don’t snap out of it only to find I’ve tossed anything important – you didn’t really need those golf clubs, did you, Big Man?) and the next minute I’m comatose on the couch wondering how I could bring a child into this world where people suffer and die and the economy sucks and Iran is going to implode and take us all down with it. Whoa…maybe I should just go back to work until Little Man comes.
Really, I think the leaving work thing is a bigger transition than I realized. I’ve partnered with someone in my business for the first time, handing over the reins to her for the summer and when I get back, we will both work part-time and take care of our kids the other part of the time. Ideal, right? Then why am I freaking out? Oh yeah, because I’m a control freak, and this is all one big’ol exercise in letting go of control. My whole life I have basically taken care of myself. I got a job as soon as I was old enough so that I could become independent as soon as possible. I don’t like to ask for help, and have gone most of my life without needing it. Even once I got married, I’ve always felt like we were equal partners. I’ve definitely been humbled and have learned to ask for emotional help from Big Man over our years of marriage, but I’ve always pulled my own weight financially. Suddenly, that will no longer be the case. I will be dependent.
What’s the big deal? Plenty of women want to stay home with the kids, and shouldn’t I be rejoicing that we’ve worked it out that at least some of the time I’ll get to do that? Obviously those women don’t have my issues. You know, an inability to trust men to stick around for the long haul, or that other one, not having any self-worth that’s not tied to performance…oh, that nasty baggage. I know by now that when these fears rear their ugly heads, it’s usually because I’m growing, and if I face them directly, I grow out of them and become just one step closer to a healthy person who doesn’t react out of fear. I’m sure my work identity crisis is just the beginning. Soon, I’ll actually have a baby in my arms, triggering all sorts of latent issues. But if I allow myself to trust that I’m not in this alone, I know help will come.
Here are some random things that have been helpful in distracting me from all this self-analysis/absorption:
FMyLife – where people share their horror stories and I laugh and laugh
RockCookieBottom – where this guy posts a new song everyday. some suck, some crack me up, but you gotta give it to him, he’s creating everyday. two of my faves are My Obama Neurosis and (I Wanna Go) Where the Wild Things Are.