Friday, April 11, 2014

Keeping My Mom Face On & 15/52

 
A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2014. 

She sported her first pigtails this week.

I think one of the most challenging things about motherhood is living up to the expectations you have for yourself. When you're a child, you look up to your parents and see them only as your protectors; the ones who shield you from all the bad in the world.. they are always strong and composed. Being a parent, I now know how hard it is to keep yourself from breaking down when everyone is having a hard day.. having to keep your "game face" on so your child(ren) feel(s) safe and secure.

I have always been easily overwhelmed and let my emotions get the best of me, but since Logan has come along and grown up to a point where she understands the emotions I am exuding, I have to keep my emotions in check to be able to care for her the way she deserves.
Wednesday, Logan had an allergist appointment that we had been waiting for since December; it was overwhelming to say the least. I didn't think it was an appointment that Rory needed to take time off of work for; I wish he had come with us. We were there for two hours, answering two hours worth of questions, waiting for the assistant and the allergist to write a novel about Logan's history in to the computer.. Logan was restless, throwing things around the room, tearing the paper on the "bed"; I don't blame her though.. I was itching to get out of that room as well. The allergist ordered a lot of blood work and we needed to get to the lab on the other side of town at some point. I had an empty pantry and refrigerator looming in my mind, Logan needed to eat lunch and nap, and she was already looking like she was going to fall asleep in the car. After a quick Trader Joe's run, I finally got her home and fed.. I layed her down and it took her almost twenty five minutes to fall asleep. Thirty five minutes later, she was awake and I had realized I hadn't eaten or taken one sip of water the whole day... oh well, the show must go on. I decided to just get her to the lab so I could get all of the dramatics with the blood work done and over with. I was feeling anxious and overwhelmed and confessed to the lab tech that I could possibly cry the moment Logan started crying from being poked with a needle.. she giggled and said it was okay. I didn't feel okay. Logan sat as best as she could, I hugged her tightly and kissed her head as tears were welling up in my eyes.. for her, for me. After four viles of blood were drawn, she was very pleased with all of her stickers and walked out of the office saying "bye" to all of her new fans and blew kisses. I got my smiling, happy, unfazed baby in to the car and I felt like I could sit in there and cry for a while, but didn't; I needed to be smiling and let her know what a great job she did and needed to reassure her that we were going home to play outside. 

Shoving my emotions as far down as I can over and over again leaves me drained. I felt exhausted from not being able to just express what I needed to, but what can you do in a situation like that? I don't want Logan to see me upset and then make herself upset. Kids feed on your emotions and I wanted her to be proud of herself and enjoy the rest of her day. Before becoming a parent, I had heard all of the "it's painful to watch your child go through this and that", "I don't want to let my child down".. seriously. She had a very hard and draining day as well, so even though I felt broken from watching her have to go through it all, she was unfazed at the end of the day (probably because she doesn't have the brain capacity to remember all that she had gone through, but nonetheless she taught me a lesson: to keep smiling).

Whether it's because she couldn't remember or because she really has an incredible personality and can bounce back quickly from any hardship, she makes me want to be better at controlling my emotions; not just with her, but in general. I don't want to let someones words or rudeness let me feel down. I don't want things that pop up in my mind about my past ruin my day. I don't want to let a hard situation or a rough day bring me down to a point where I feel exhausted and ready to give up.
Keeping Logan safe and happy keeps me going and seeing her smile after a traumatic situation is all I need to keep my mom face on.

 xo 
-Ali

4 comments :

  1. I love this post. It's funny how as parent's we think we are going to teach our children so much (and we do) but they in turn teach us too.

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    1. Exactly!
      She's turned my world upside down and I am grateful :)
      xo
      Ali

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  2. Such a happy photo. Sorry to read it's been such an emotional time for you - I work on the theory that it's good for children to see their parents and people around them not only happy but also sad and upset at times, as long as it's explained to them it can be really beneficial long term.
    As someone who has struggled to control and understand my own emotions in the past it really is good to just let them rise form time to time, tackle them head on and move forward feeling empowered.
    Gosh I hope that didn't sound far too deep for a first comment! x

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    1. I love that! I think you're exactly right. I don't ever want Logan to be ashamed of her emotions or feel like she has to hide them so I will continually remind myself of your theory :-)
      Xo
      Ali

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