Sunday, September 6, 2009

An adjustment of sorts....

Sometimes I can be a selfish person. Maybe it's because I'm the youngest of LOTS of children... or maybe it's just the way that I was born. Having Novalee has taken away some of that selfish nature, but has also increased it in ways that I wasn't anticipating. Let's elaborate:
My maternity leave.
I busted my tooshie off at work - not taking any extra days off of work for the entire year - so that I could use my paid time off as part of my leave. I also filled out pages and pages of paperwork, begged my boss to even LET me have 6 weeks off, and worked up until THE DAY I went into labor. How did that work out for me? Nada. Three weeks before my labor, I was hospitalized with the flu for an entire week and completely drained all of my saved paid time off. Three weeks later, I gave birth to Novalee and found out that we would be watching Scott's two boys (ages 9 and 13) for the duration of 3 weeks. Now, don't get me wrong - I absolutely adore these boys. But, (here's where I start to feel selfish) I was NOT planning on having them year for nearly ALL of my maternity leave. They are great boys, and are ALWAYS wanting to help with the baby.. but it is something that I just wasn't prepared for. In my mind, I had completely earned 6 weeks off of work of just me and Scott bonding with this new person. Did not happen. What DID happen was that Scott's boys both managed to catch some form of the Swine Flu - leaving them SICK at our house for an entire week, coughing all over me and our newborn baby.
Now, imagine how terrible I feel even writing this. I just want peace in our house. I want to take naps with Novalee without someone asking me if they can have Kool-aid. I want to hold Novalee without someone begging for me to let them hold her. I want to put her in the car without 6 hands trying to do it for me. I want to surround her with love and I don't want to carry this frustration around with me. I want to love the boys without feeling like they are out to get me, testing me, punishing me for all of the work that I did for nine months. Also, add the fact that my loving, amazing husband has been playing a ton more shows (meaning he is gone in the evenings making beautiful music) - leaving me home with 3 kids who are bored out of their minds looking to me for entertainment, when I can only do so much with NO MONEY and a newborn baby. Talk about the OPPOSITE of a relaxing 6 week maternity leave. I have 2 weeks left until I go back to work, and honestly I think I'm just ready to go back NOW. That's how flippin selfish I am. What is wrong with me? Why can't I just be at peace with all of this? Scott seems to be managing just fine. Why is it so much harder for me to adjust to this? Is it somehow related to the hours of sleep deprivation that comes with having a baby?


  1. Of course, hubby is managing fine. He didn't JUST have a baby AND have to deal with two (unplanned) extra kids on top of that 24/7. No one doubts that you love those boys, but learning the routines with your new baby and bonding are your priority right now.

    Is there anyone that can help out by taking the boys for a few hours during the week?

    Get some rest and enjoy your beautiful little girl!! BTW - LOVE that name Novalee (ever since I saw "Where The Heart Is".

  2. You are not selfish at all. You're just being a mom trying to chill and bond with her new baby. If you haven't already, you may need to lay the law down or have Scott help you do it, so you CAN enjoy your last few weeks of time with Novalee. You're right, you've worked your ass off, and yes, you DO deserve it. Maybe the boys just need to be told. ?? ;)))

  3. What a post! You do have quite the full plate there. I think it is understandable to feel like you have an adjustment there. That's a lot of stressful things to deal with.

    A couple positives (that I could think of):
    -I think it is probably a good thing that your stepsons are there because this means they will bond with the baby immediately and that will help out dramatically in the years to come.
    -The whole thing -- crappy as it is -- makes for a very memorable story that will build your character and make you a better person. I know that sounds cliche' but I think it is true. It's only the hard stuff that actually makes us better in the end.

    Truly though, I think you are doing great. You made a pretty little girl who is loved by everyone she is contact with, you are a good stepmom, and you are making due with the stresses that come from work/spouse's work. Remember to give yourself a pat on the back for being so great!