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Parenting Personal

Mom, a complicated word

I’ve been thinking about my mom a lot lately. My usual thoughts about how much she would have loved these boys of mine and how much they would have loved her. But also about how, in motherhood myself now, I have grown to maybe understand her a little better.

I had a complicated relationship with my mother. With both of my parents, really. I spent most of my childhood either trying to blend in and not draw attention or, conversely, trying to draw as much positive attention as I could to myself. I was a people pleaser. I still am.

I frequently wondered if my parents really loved me. I know, of course, that they did. But a child doesn’t have that logical reasoning. And I know that sounds dramatic. But it seemed as though by the time I came along, my parents were over the whole parenting thing.

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Parenting

The year that was

Well, 2020 was certainly … something.

Dan was out of work for about two-and-a-half months due to the pandemic, so the boys were out of pre-school during that time, as well. My job stayed open, as animal healthcare is pretty essential (despite our state not including us in their definition). So Dan became a stay-at-home dad during a very difficult time to be stuck at home.

Parenting in general is very hard for me, as a person living with bipolar disorder, but parenting during COVID-lockdown when you struggle with your mental health on a good day? Holy shit. My stress level saw new highs I dared hope it never would.