You can tell that spring is just around the corner when ants pop up everywhere in your house. We are under an invasion of epic proportions. Their presence made me think of a fact I read in one of my kids wildlife magazines. Did you know that the queen ant detaches her wings when she is ready to reproduce. Just rips them off!
My immediate thought after reading it was, isn’t that just great… the female looses her ability to fly, her freedom. Ha! Isn’t that the truth.
I felt that I could identify with the queen. Even if I was projecting my human feeling on to her biological instincts. Here we women are, flying around and as soon as we reproduce our wings are ripped off. Doomed to be grounded. I’m a little over dramatic (or a lot) but I do feel like my wings were clipped and just like the queen ant, I did it to myself.
Not because I chose to have kids but something changed for me when I had them and now I don’t feel like myself anymore. Something happened after I had my kids that I was not prepared for. I had postpartum anxiety.
Before I had kids I had wanted to stay home with them. My husband and I made the arrangements we needed for this but after my daughter was born my anxiety took over. Only I could keep her safe and protected. It was even hard when my husband would take her places. If someone watched her in the house it was better but taking her out, I had to be there. Even with my kids being 2 and 4 (almost 3 and 5) I am still having trouble balancing my anxiety, responsibility, and trying to live my life.
Maybe I shouldn’t feel like myself. Lets be real, having a child changes the chemicals in your body and for a good reason. Maybe I would have been a superior mother thousands of years ago but now I just feel crazy and exhausted. I chose to be the stay-at-home-parent and take care of my kids. This puts limits on having time to myself and when I say this, I mean more that 20 min’s but there is a whole other side to this and I haven’t felt like me.
There are so many posts about loosing yourself in motherhood and lately I’ve read too many of them. I just never expected I would feel this way. One blog talked about the seasons of kids. That baby – toddler – preschooler, were not her season and that is, ok. Just like spring brings fresh new energy, so will the next season of an older child. I really do try to remember this but the feeling of my wings being clipped, is a feel of loss of control.
One of reasons that I write this blog is in hopes of finding Mara. Maybe it will create a path or another outlet and there I’ll be. I’ll be standing there, fresh faced and ready to take on the world. Some people can find the balance with being home, being with the kids and still be able to fill their soul but I have trouble with this. A lot of the time I’m just too tired and now I can’t remember what I like to do. On top of this my mother died, which opened my eyes to the constant reminder of how fragile life is.
At the end of the day I just try and remember these words:
“So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is because they’re chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.”
― Mitch Albom,
My life is full and I am in it. I’m deep in the trenches (like the queen ant), dirty and tired but that’s where I am and where I will find me.