Is it just me, or am I feeling like the only person who isn’t properly prepared for Christmas this year? It seems that EVERYONE is on their A game this year, with a ton of baking, decorating and shopping already under their belts. Me? Hah. Girl, I’m just trying to get through the week.
If I’ve never explained this properly before, I’m currently working as an Articled Clerk. It’s a term that no one seems to understand (not even me). Sometimes we’re called Students-at-Law (which I personally feel is so much more bad-ass…). Articling is the one-year span following graduation from law school where graduates work with a “Principal” to complete our “articling checklists” before we take the bar course and write the bar examination and (hopefully, if all goes well), become a full-fledged lawyer. Essentially, it’s the “on the job training” component of our career, and it can be quite demanding by times. We have to complete particular tasks across certain areas of law (family law, criminal law, administrative law, etc.).
I posted earlier today on Instagram about how much I hate Sundays. They just feel like another Monday to me. Maybe even worse. For some reason we’re all perpetually cranky in this house on Sunday mornings. Today was no exception. I spent the first half of the day stewing, but managed to recover later in the day and ended up being super productive. We even spent some time at the library checking out books before we headed to the grocery store. [I asked my 4 year old what she’d rather do: go to the library or the park. Of course she picked the library. She’s a girl after my own heart].
This past summer, my 4-year-old turned to me while watching a parade with disgust all over her face. There was a man, on stilts, without a shirt. “Why is that man naked, Mommy?” She asked. I told her, without thinking “because boys don’t have to wear shirts”.
Oh, Mom Guilt. My old friend. Or should I say “frenemy”.
This morning wasn’t one of my most shining moments as a parent. I woke up late, exhausted (which is the new thing I do since becoming a parent), and laid in bed for too long. I woke my four-year-old up and instructed her to get dressed. She wanted to wear her pajamas to school. We said no. She asked her Dad to eat breakfast at the table, which we both knew wasn’t possible given the fact it was so late.
Self-care. You hear a lot about it, but what is it, really?
Self-care is an all-encompassing term that describes measures we can take to improve our mental, emotional and physical health. Think of it as preventative medicine: it’s like a vitamin we take in the form of… anything that benefits our health. (Hah, just call me Webster’s Dictionary over here).
This stage of life is hard.
We rush from one activity to the next. We’re trying to advance in our careers while still maintaining some semblance of sanity. We’re never fully focused at work, always anticipating that call from daycare or school. The schooling we so carefully and expensively pursued has done nothing to prepare us for this. We’re living for the weekends, which turn into disorganized chaos because we’re all so used to routine. We try to strike a balance between planning and “living in the moment”, and end up with a terrible combination of both that makes Monday morning feel like a reprieve.
Anyone who knows me #IRL knows two things about me. Well, maybe three:
I’m terrible at cooking and meal planning in general;
I love bullet journalling; and,
I’m all about saving time, especially in the evenings.
There are certain pivotal moments in this life.
For me, one of those was the night I messaged you over Facebook shortly after my daughter was born, desperately seeking out someone who could understand what I was going through. It was late, and of course I was crying. I was seated in the brown armchair in my living room, struggling to entice a screaming newborn to settle enough to latch while my fiancé slept peacefully in our bedroom. I was full of rage and despair.
I spent the early weeks of my daughter’s life on the same spot on the couch. To this day, the cushion serves as a stark reminder of those times: worn out and significantly flattened by its many hours of use. The cycle went: wake, cry, eat, cry, eat, cry, eat, cry, sleep. Repeat. And for the first time in my life, I felt a particular type of anger bubbling up within me more times than I could count: white hot flashes of rage that terrified me, forcing me to place her in her crib while I stepped outside to remind myself to breathe.
I felt like I was having a heart attack.