This little darling was 8 months old on Monday. I can't believe I have an 8 month old. I can't believe I have a DAUGHTER. She is so amazing in every way. I feel so silly to question God. Of course he knew what he was doing! She's the perfect child for us!
Husband and I are still having growing pains. We're still struggling a bit to find ourselves in our life after baby. Plus he's without a job right now which is such a struggle for him, and our house is still a mess and unfinished. We love each other very much, though, and I'm glad we have all of our previous struggles to carry us through this. I know that sounds strange, but it's like each step was a preparation for us to be able to work through this time. I don't know if we would know how to support and encourage each other and deal with our shortcomings if we hadn't had trials and tribulations of an important nature before. Just another strange way I see God working in my life. I will continue to pray that we find our strength and work together. We both have things to work on but we are committed to and love each other and our gorgeous girl.
One of the things I've been struggling with is me and finding myself. Andy is having difficulty communicating/connecting to me these days. He says I am "Mom" where I should be "Erika, who is a mom". If that makes sense? It's very deep. I like being mom. But I realize that as E gets older, I need to have interests to share with her, and also to keep me busy when she decides that mom is just SO lame. I guess he's afraid I'm losing part of myself. I always see it as gaining a new part, but I have completely neglected myself as well. Being a mom can be very isolating. Most of my friends have abandoned me and it's depressing. It's hard to be a working mom, so I want to spend all my free time with her. But that leaves nothing for my husband, and I have to have time for him so we can build the best relationship to be the best role models for E. And I need to take care of me and encourage my own wants and needs as well.
I think one of the big issues is my kidneys. I'm so tired all the time that I put E to bed at 7:30 and I'm asleep by 9. I wake up at 7 and go right to work. In that hour and a half I have to shower, eat, and get ready for bed. I barely see my husband. 10 hours of sleep should be more than enough but I'm still exhausted because of my kidneys. We're going to talk to the doctor about that. I feel like if I could combat the exhaustion and get 7-8 hours a night I'd open up so much time for other things! And it's not like E is a bad sleeper. She normally goes down at 7:15, sleeps until 2:30, is back asleep by 3 and wakes up at 7. I think I need to exercise and get healthier as well as do whatever the doctor says so I can go to bed at 10:30 or 11 and have some time every night with Andy.
I'd also like to start doing things again on weekends. Either as a family, or with my friends. I want to take E to museums, the zoo, the aquarium, play dates, the park... all sorts of things. I can see friends and involve her in all of my interests. She gets bored easily in the house so it will make both of us happy. I need to spend time doing things I love, but I'm not willing to sacrifice time with E, so I'll bring her. I want to get into photography again. She and I can go on nature walks and go to the city and shop and I can bring my camera. She's such an easy baby there's no reason not to go have fun with her and pursue my interests. I feel like that might bring some spark back to my relationship with my husband.
I also miss music. Music was what connected Andy and I in the beginning and it's like I don't have time for it, and he feels like he's lost part of me. I don't like that. I always wanted to share my love of music with my baby. I always thought about playing her music and singing songs and taking her to outdoor concerts. I still want that. I guess I'm just trying to find my new self. Trying to balance "Erika" with "Mommy". Mommy always comes first. But I still need parts of Erika to show E who her mommy really is. And to teach her the things I grew up loving. So I guess my plan is to allow me to be me a little. And to bring E into my world of music and photography and nature (I love nature) and exercise. We can bond and get healthy and I can show her a healthier lifestyle and some fun hobbies.
I do need to make more time for my husband, so this kidney thing needs to be fixed. He deserves a wife that's there, and not asleep. And E is going to deserve a mommy that's not exhausted all the time too!!
I guess I just needed to get this out to think about it. In all honesty, life is doing ok. I have the most amazing child, a loving, supportive husband who wants to work through issues with me, a great support system in my family... I need more friends, but that's OK. E is enough for me. She really is. I just need to be the best me I can be for her.