Family

nightmare

Woah, Nellie! Piggle has officially hit the Terrible Twos. There have been a few ocassions when I’ve thought he might have hit this fantastic milestone, but looking back, I can see that they were and nothing compared to what we are enduring now. I once said that Piggle is an asshole, and for that, I am truly sorry. I can see now that he was not an asshole—then. Boy, is he ever a jerk now, though.

The past week has been a clusterfuck of screaming matches, UFC-esque punches to my jaw, more “NO”s than I know what to do with, and Piggle-sized fistfuls of my hair being torn from my head. I love this boy more than anything, but he is a dick! Schoolyard bullies have nothing on him! He’s brought me to tears three times!

Of course, I’m not innocent in all of this. I rise to the bait almost every time. I have an awful temper, and I know that I aggravate the situation by reacting to whatever evil shenanigans he’s pulling.

I’m a yeller. I always have been. It is the one thing I hate most about myself. I’ve googled countless blogs and articles to learn how to stop, and all of them gave great advice—which I adhered to for all of 10 seconds. I’m not proud of it, and it takes a lot for me to admit it publicly, but I need help.

I know what to do…just not how to do it. I know that he’d probably explode far less often if I calmed the hell down, but sometimes it’s really hard when the Devil has possessed my toddler.

So here it is: My name is Brea, and I’m a scream-oholic.

Maybe by posting this publicly, I’ll be held more accountable and be more likely to quit. My goal for now is to go 1 week, starting tomorrow,  without yelling. At the end of this week, I will report back with my progress.

Is there any part of your parenting that you feel needs work? Let’s do this together! Maybe we can keep each other on track! Add your parenting confession to the!

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If you were to ask me how I’m doing, my answer would never change. I’d tell you that I’m okay. Problem is, I’d be lying…

It has been two weeks since Sequel’s birth. Fourteen days that feel more like fourteen centuries. A fortnight spent, not learning how to manage my life with two children, but mourning the loss of those precious first days with my daughter. Rather than trying to figure out how to occupy Piggle while changing the eightieth poopy diaper in six hours, I am learning how to attach sat probes and flush IV lines. Instead of changing her clothes, I’m changing bandages. The past couple of weeks haven’t been spent reveling in the miracle of childbirth and getting to know my new baby. They’ve been more like a never-ending episode of Grey’s Anatomy.

Instead of inhaling the fresh scent of newborn skin, I’m forced to choke on the chemical fumes of a sterile environment. Hand sanitizer oozes out of my pores, and I am afraid—not of accidentally dropping my child, but of tearing a needle out of her veins or ripping a probe off of her tiny body. Terrified of every beep from her monitors. My eyes are glued to the screen that reassures me she’s still here. I count every beat of her heart, and my tears fall to the rhythm of her chest rising and falling.

I haven’t slept. Not for more than a few hours—when exhaustion has finally taken over. While lost sleep is normal for a new mother, they have their reason laying within arm’s reach. I, however, am roused from what little rest I do manage, not by a small cry in the night, but by a computerized melody on a cell phone. Time to pump. Time to cry. Time to worry. Time to let the incredible guilt wash over me.

The guilt. I can’t begin to tell you how overwhelming it is. How much it weighs me down. More prevalent than even the sadness, it threatens to swallow me whole. Why couldn’t my body just protect her as it should have? Before she was even considered a human being, I had failed her. My one job as her mother is to keep her safe, and I failed. There she lays, in a tiny bed, constantly subjected to the searing pain of needles and various fluids being pumped into her tiny body. I did this to her.

I hurt also for my sweet Piggle. Between my emotional instability, mood swings, and extended absences, he has been through hell and back, and I sense the distance he has put between us. I feel the apprehension. And I understand. He has been my superhero through all of this. The only pillar holding me up. In spite of everything, he has remained as sweet as he’s ever been. This boy has strength beyond his years, and oh, how I wish I could draw on it for myself.

How am I supposed to divide myself equally between the two people I love and need most in this world? How can I justify hurting one to tend to the other? My heart shatters when I leave either of them. Though likely just a projection of my own pain, the look in their eyes when I turn my back is gut-wrenching. How can they understand that this isn’t how I wanted it to be? How do I explain to a two-year old that it’s not forever? How do I tell Sequel that the pain will end soon? How do I show them how sorry I am?

I can’t describe the emotions coursing through me. Words cannot portray the intensity of the roller coaster I am riding. All I want is for it to be over. For the ride to end. I want my family together. I welcome the challenges of raising two children. I look forward to the trials and tribulations of an infant and a toddler under one roof. I am excited to share with Sequel the incredible life Piggle and I have built together. But it’s so hard to look ahead. It seems forever away.

While I’m not in the worst of situations and am not the first mom to have a premature baby, it doesn’t make it any easier. Yes, there are families with a much longer road ahead of them than the one I am traveling, but that doesn’t make my journey pass by any quicker.

So instead of asking me how I am, please,  just tell me how I will be. Tell me that this will all be over soon and that I will come out in one piece. Maybe if I hear it enough times, I’ll start to believe it. Until then, I’m not okay.

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As the title of this post would suggest, I am at a parting of ways with, well, teeth. I bid adieu to the pearly white bastards in two capacities. The first, of course, being the god-awful teething that has plagued my existence for a year and a half. The second refers to those I have torn from my own head—along with much of my hair—while awaiting the seemingly non-existent end to this torture. Alas, however, we have reached the finale. Well, almost. The first of four (why they have to come in droves is beyond me) has cut through.

The countdown is on!

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