Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Sigh....It's Just Me Being Annoying...

*Update! After writing the posts above, I have come to a realization. I will still leave this post up but I have realized; Who am I to complain!? I have a blessed life.

You are born. You grow up playing playing house, lovingly caring for stuffed animals in need of bandages and hugs,cooking wet sand cakes in the backyard box. You know there's some reason you're supposed to meet a guy, date, get married, have kids. And in between the studying, and the degrees, the hunt for a career, you somehow feel that it just wouldn't be enough without that guy, that family, that Kitchenaide mixer. You are married. So, now you have it all, right? This is what you grew up for, you tell yourself. This is what you're supposed to do. Then, why do you feel sad sometimes?

Wow, how nearly third person of me. Katie sent me these pictures from our "lost weekend in California". John Lennon had a "lost weekend" in California that lasted 18 months. But that was in LA, not San Francisco. I digress........

Seeing this three little photos (the ones below), which are just three little seconds from a million memories, just makes me so sad. They make me wonder why I was happier more on a day-to- day basis then and if that makes me a shitty Mother and a terrible wife. Although, I have to say, I think Jon was happier back then too. It's not That I don't love Noah and Jon with my every breath, because I really do and they in themselves make me happy. It's just that...well, seeing these photos reminds me of how much younger and more free and naively hopeful about life I was only three years ago.

Three years ago! Look at those picture, how can anyone age so quickly!? Stress, anxiety, being sad, look what it did to me. I look 5-10 years younger in those pictures.

Today at 5:00 I was making the 20 minutes drive home with Noah from a library a few cities away.I was exhausted from a long day and slightly annoyed at traffic and the prospect of making dinner when I got home. I was thinking about the pictures Katie took and how sadly different my day to day life is now. Do you know what I have done all week? I've changes about fifty diapers so far, made three meals a day that are rarely eaten, if not thrown from a highchair without appreciation. I've cleaned the house twice each day, done laundry and endless dishes. The car needed an oil change, Noah needed socks, groceries were bought as was toilet paper. I delt with at least three daily tantrums on my own, gave my attention to Noah, to the cat and pig, to Jon and friends in need. Folded loads and loads of clothes, bathed the baby, took him to the park and Mom and Tot and the library. And it's all just not as enjoyable as my life before and it makes me sad that this is what happened.

So, what does this all mean? I feel terribly guilty feeling this way. Perhaps it's because before I had an extra good and easy life before. Maybe I just need to toughen up. Those pictures illustrate perfectly what a sweet existance I had back then. The top is photo is me, packed up for a picnic at Ocean Beach with Katie. Our apartment was just 15 short blocks away and the train would get you there in five minutes. The picture of Jon and I was taken at "Cha Cha Cha", a well known Latin place in the Haight. We were there with katie's family who graciously treated all of us to tons tapas dishes, we orderd everything on the menu. Jon and I explored new restaurants daily, it was amazing. The last photo is of Jon and I at Stinson Beach in Marin County. Gorgeous, not crowded, overlooking the city through it's fog. Adam drove as Katie and I screamed our lungs out in the back while we made our way along the ocean side cliffs of Highway One. You pray for no earthquakes while you're up in the air on that old route.

I'm sorry, I know. I know for the past week I've been a downer. I guess every so often you need to take stock of your life, where you're at, where you need to go. Jon and I have been doing that lately. Maybe we need to get back to San Francisco.....but I know for now it's hopless, it just wouldn't be the same. We'd still have a toddler who we still couldn't take out to eat and anyways, we're still too poor to afford a flat that actually includes a yard in a safe enough neighborhood WITH a garage. Things that are essential with a child in that city.

Does anyone like where they are in life? I think it's human to have regrets or "what ifs". Are these really supposed to be the best years of my life, doing the whole young family thing? Have I lived my best years already? What do we do now? I feel like a souffle' that's been deflated.

Thank you for listening.
Me: (Deep breath)
......... Five minutes.............
Re-read post...........

Ok Lauren, perspective. Ever heard of it? Get some.

Writing is SO theraputic I tell ya! Ok, so now I will like to add an anotation to my post courtesy of my imaginary friend Perspective.
You know what, I have a fine life. No! I have a fabulously wonderful and lucky life. I am grateful. My family, my friends, we have our healthy, we have each other. Our husbands have jobs, there are roofs over our heads and Hostess products on our tables (at least mine). I have the cutest genius of a son and the cutest genius of a husband and a Mother who used to buy me Cadbury Eggs each spring. I'm blessed.

It's ok that Lauren sometimes feels blue. That is human. She needs to get a grip though and not dwell on the "what ifs" in life. If Lauren can learn to appreciate the small things in life (like an extra diaper in your purse when you really need one), then she will learn to also be more happy.

Wow, that was really third person.


Judy said...

I have a lot of what ifs, but mine are slightly different. I didn't have Travis until I was 30. My life dream was to have all my kids by the time I was 27, so this really threw my "master plan" for a loop. Once I settled into life with Travis (which wasn't until he was about 2.5, so give yourself some time, girl!), I found a happy place. I started to enjoy him more, find more little snippets of time for myself and I became a much happier person. I could see the three of us, holding hands through life and enjoying it all. It became my new "good life".

Then I got pregnant with Tyler - another surprise. Out went the Disney trips, the new job I had just started, the plans to move into a cool old house, get new cars, the works. And, I still find myself in that "what if" stage quite often.

But, from experience, I know it will pass in about another year's time. And, I'll find that great feeling of nirvana again that I so desperately need right now. In the meantime, listening to Tyler's giggle, watching him play with Travis, and taking pictures, lots of pictures, seems to help. A lot.

Kendra Lynn said...

Hmmm. I understand how you are feeling.
Every now and then I look back at my life six or seven years ago, and say, "wow..I wish I could go back and live that all over again. It was so great!" But wait! I still had stress then! I still got depressed! I didn't have the stability of a good marriage and my sweet Scott to lean on.
I was working, HARD, to pay my bills, and trying to juggle relationships and church and figure out my life.
Now...I am still juggling...but things are more stable. Yes, I have the stress of motherhood and being a wife. Yes, I have more bills than ever and eating out is pretty difficult at times!
But my life is stable, as stable as life CAN be anyway.
And I'm happy.
I think every person looks over their life at some point and wonders "what if".
Thankfully, we are unable to go back in time and mess up the good things we've already done. LOL
I love you, Lauren, and I know your life is going to be already is. :)

Laura said...

I know where you're coming from too. When I think back to my carefree college years of hiking, shopping and spur-of-the-moment trips I get depressed. Never in my life did I expect to have made two cross-continental moves, be married and have going on two children all before I was 30! I wrote down my "game plan" in a journal back during my junior year at Fort Lewis. I wasn't even going to get married until I was 25! Ahh well, you just have to live life with the curve balls that you're thrown. I wish we were a bit better off though...I'd love for Caitlin & the new baby to have an actual house to come home to, with a backyard but alas, we have debt to pay off first. I've been trying to learn that there is no such thing as a perfect life but that beauty, such as it is, is in the eyes of the beholder. I try to see the good in everything that we do, try my best to make the most of what he have instead of yearning. It's hard sometimes and I utterly fail a lot--but isn't that what life is? Shoot, this has been so long, I need to blog about this myself, obviously!