I remember the moment clearly. A friend had stopped by and I was starting to get into my nesting phase right before Little Lass made her appearance. She brought along a gift for the baby girl and in the bag was a button. And the button said “I’m a Crafty Motherf***r.” I laughed, it’s so like her. She told me it was to remind me that I was, am and will always be more than just a mother once the baby was there.
I heard about that often. How women tend to lose themselves in being a Mom. How sometimes marriages suffer when you go from being Dick and Jane and become Mommy and Daddy. I never really worried about it though. Flyboy and I had been together for what felt like forever, we’d already survived a major emotionally falling out (mostly because we’re both too stubborn to give up or in, a blessing and a curse let me tell you) and came out stronger for it. We even had a horrible episode that could have made or broken us, and it made us even more of a unit than I thought would be possible. We were solid, like Adamantium. If you don’t know what that is, all I’m going to say is Wolverine folks. If you don’t know what that means then… I’m sorry for your lack of comic book knowledge. Really. I am. Sad Panda.
No, I won’t explain that either.
So, Little Lass came in to the world. I was over the moon in love. Then the postpartum depression hit on day 3 or 4 and Flyboy made me go talk to someone about it right away because I had become zombie-ish with bouts of crying for absolutely no reason at all and experiencing guilty feelings for bringing such a helpless being into the world where bad things can happen. I honestly think Flyboy was contemplating shotgun or flame-thrower. Just in case. I did go get some help, and I managed to bounce back fairly quickly. I think. But I’m not going to ask around to confirm. Like I thought Flyboy and I held strong and we’re still “Flyboy and Geek Girl” as well as “Little Lasses
Indentured Servants Parents.” That man loves me more than he loves pickled herring, and that’s saying something.
During the recovery process I realized something. I was never going to lose myself being my little girls mom. See you can’t lose what you lost already. Over the years I had gained weight, and so I dressed in a way that hid the gain but didn’t fix the real issue. Clothes don’t make the man they say, but clothes are an expression of your personality. Push that away for long enough and eventually you forget what that form of expression meant.
I sunk myself into my work and video games. Which, for an addictive personality, is not a good path to go down. I stopped reading for fun, scrapbooking, cross-stitching, and writing. My friends rarely saw me, and they were saints for putting up with it. I didn’t even go hiking or biking. I had even let my spiritual self drift. Some people would look at that happening and say that I was just becoming settled. But it wasn’t that at all. I literally decided to not notice that I was letting myself get away. I was even packing my bags for myself to leave with. How accommodating am I?
I came to the conclusion that I couldn’t let it continue. Not just for Little Lass… not just for Flyboy, although they both deserve the consideration. This had to be fixed for me and because I deserved it too. I’ve said it in the past when talking about others. There isn’t anyone in the world that can help someone unless that person is willing to do something about it too. It became my turn to live it.
It has been an uphill climb. I have to consciously make the effort to put the laptop, technical manual, or nifty new gadget away. Remind myself that hiding behind them isn’t doing any one any good. I can’t ever let myself forget what I’m working on so hard and the reasons why, or I run the risk of slipping in to bad habits. It’s a struggle sometimes. But my Little Lass? She serves as a reminder that I am more. That she and I deserve the memories we’re making together and as a family.
Some day I may have to tell her about how she entered my life and helped turn me back in the right direction. Some day. Maybe. When we’re past terrible twos, preteen tantrums and teenage angst and it’s relatively safe to admit it. But for now I’ll go play at the water table, build towers just to knock them down, sing ABC repeatedly because she always claps and I get a certain kind prideful joy out of it, and listen to Flyboy read “Hippos Go Berserk” like he does every night to her because she won’t pick any other book. And when she goes to bed I’ll curl up with a book that has nothing to do with nothing, curl up with Flyboy and drink a glass of wine and remind myself that this is me. And “I’m a Crafty Motherf***er.”
(Sadly no picture of the pin since I can’t seem to find it. If I do I’ll update the post to include it. For now Foxy up above will have to do. He’s a well loved lovey.)