estrogen is the bestrogen

My sister dropped by this afternoon. My sister is awesome. She's beautiful and brilliant and has a whip-smart wit. She's an English major so she has words. Lots of them. And she's a women and gender studies minor so she has opinions too... and we share similar philosophies and world views so I always expect good talks when we're together. We talked while the kids slept for a little while. And it was the most intellectually stimulating conversation I've had in months. After 2 hours of discussing sexism, classism, racism and any other kind of -ism you can imagine there was a bit of a lull and my sister sighed, "You know what I wish? I just wish I would wake up tomorrow and..." There would be world peace? Nope. We'd find a cure for cancer? Nah. "I just wish I would wake up tomorrow and every white man would be pregnant. And I wouldn't have an ounce of sympathy."




I've been thinking lately.

I've been thinking about the fact that I've been thinking.

For the last five months I haven't been able to form a cohesive, independent thought apart from WhoIsScreaming or What'sThatSmell. I'm not sure if it's the sunshine and fresh air that's clearing away the remnants of the triple threat of postpartum depression, seasonal affective disorder and a lingering sinus infection, or just that time really does heal all wounds but I'm thinking. I'm beginning to feel human again. I'm beginning to feel like ME again.

The last five months have been difficult. Lots of change, lots of challenges. Life has been draining... emotionally. Psychologically. Draining. And dark.

I'm learning that I am a good mom. Despite my shortcomings and failures as a human, I love my children and daily give my life to them so that they will be sensitive, compassionate, competent people. There are days that I have doubts about my parenting, when we're 2 hours into the morning and the house is a wreck and I've already given a dozen timeouts, or when I just don't feel like playing the same game for the umpteenth time in a row (so I don't). I'm learning to push past the self-imposed Mommy Guilt that we all chain ourselves with, suck it up, and go to the park (or indoor inclement weather alternative, as the case may be).

Sunshine helps. And sleep. Or coffee. And laughter with friends (or Friends). And hired help. And writing... of course, writing. And being able to think about things like gender issues, social issues, environmental issues. Any issues but my kids' issues.

I'm fairly certain I will not look back at this moment in my life and care about how frequently I used cloth diapers or how well breastfeeding was going. More likely I'll be grateful that I survived and that I will never, never have to learn these hard, hard lessons again. And of course I'll wax nostalgic about the tininess and utter dependence of my babies "back then", but I hope I can also appreciate wherever it is that we have ended up and the roads we have taken to get there.

And sleep. I hope I always appreciate sleep.