Did you know there was once a time where mothers parented without Facebook Mom groups? I almost wouldn’t believe myself if I hadn’t experienced it briefly – VERY briefly – myself.
The first couple of months after my daughter was born were the most isolating months of my life. It was a constant debate between: “Is this activity worth my having to shower?” or, “Do I want to risk a nip slip in this particular location?” or “Should I disrupt my baby’s carefully curated nap schedule so I actually interact with the outside world?” All very important questions when you are a depressed, sleep deprived shell of your former self and you have a mostly unhappy (and constantly hungry) baby.
Until one day, when a friend casually mentioned that Facebook groups for Moms exist.
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”.
I sent a message to my two closest friends today to let them know that our child benefit credit amounts for the new tax year were now available in our online accounts.
(… Did you just fall asleep reading that sentence? I know I almost did.)
This is my life now.
I’ve posted often on my struggles with depression and anxiety. Part of it, I believe, is because depression and anxiety are genetically encoded in my DNA. I have a strong family history of depression, and I unfortunately inherited the gene. Part of it may also have to do with my less than ideal childhood. I won’t get into details, here, but suffice it to say: I didn’t get the love I needed as a child.
I’m tired of social media justice. We’re all guilty of it. Whoever shares the most compellingly-worded Facebook post wins. We share another GoFundMe page or ask for another electronic signature on a petition that probably never gets read. It’s hashtag justice at its finest. Let’s all pretend we care about the issue by acting as though we’re outraged on social media. If you’re silent, you’re deemed to be complicit.
Just the other day, I came across an article written by a well-meaning Mom who had–like so many of us before her (myself included)–fallen victim to Motherhood Martyrdom. She was looking forward to the birth of her child so she could experience a “post-delivery vacation.” In the hospital. While I admittedly don’t know what kind of hospital she was referring to, unless it was some sort of tropical resort, this is maybe the craziest thing I have ever heard. Not because she doesn’t deserve some peace and quiet (Lord knows we all do—but especially Moms who have just birthed a human), but because she felt she had to visit a medical facility to get one.
I had an informational interview yesterday at a law firm that practices an unconventional type of law that interests me. I knew that they weren’t hiring, but I contacted them anyway to see if I could speak with them about volunteering or learning more about that area of law. The meeting went well, and as I was getting ready to leave, the interviewer said to me: “you’re so lucky nowadays that you get to try things out before committing to them. We never used to have those opportunities”. He meant only the best by it, I’m sure, but it struck a chord with me. Just like that, it became about “us”–the dreaded millennials.
I have such a love-hate relationship with social media. On the one hand – as an extreme introvert – I sometimes don’t communicate with the outside world for days at a time, and the internet serves as a place where I can connect with others in the only [non-awkward] way I know how. On the other hand, the internet turns me into a jealous, raging b*tch even I can’t recognize. It’s usually one extreme or the other: there is no real “happy medium” for me when it comes to social media.
It’s that time of night again – the ‘worrying hour’. Usually 3:30-4:30 a.m. Like clockwork.
I turned 31 last week. For some reason, I thought I’d have my life together by now. I thought that when I reached the magical age of 30, I’d feel less like a child trapped in an adult’s body.