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.
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.
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.
Those of you who know me and follow me on social media know that I’ve been singing the praises of “minimalism” lately. And while I’m sure it makes me sound like some sort of combination of preachy bitch and millennial vegan hipster, I can’t help it – it has been a total game-changer. (Check out my 7 life-changing tips for living more minimally here).
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 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.
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.