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23 Jan

Served with whine

The other week, after I had written that post about parental vanity, I remarked to my husband that I was a bit concerned about ending that post on a down note. It was hard, I said to him after publishing the post, to find a way to end that discussion without getting all sad and low and woe-is-me…

‘Sad and low and woe-is-me’? he replied, his tongue not-quite-firmly-in-cheek. Isn’t that your thing? Your SHTICK?


My mother likes to tell me that I’ve always been a worrier. But I’m not, ordinarily, constantly all tied up in knots about whither this and whence that? and what the fuck am I doing? I’m not, ordinarily, a big fat mess of anxiety and angst and worry.

Parenthood, however, has ripped out my heart and my guts and my nerves and scattered these across the nursery floor and this has rendered me – understandably, I think – somewhat more vulnerable. Still, even with this heightened and deepened vulnerability, I consider myself to be a fairly emotionally-balanced human being. Sure, I cry more, wring my hands more, press my fists into my temples more often – but on the whole, I’m pretty together. (Right? Right?)

Whatever the case, the picture is always going to be skewed here, on this blog, because this is the place where I vent and rant and rave. Where I – ahem – write. Because despite all of my efforts to focus my writing here, to really use this place as a forum for exercising my writing muscles, I invariably end up writing posts about about how I’m feeling. About what’s bothering me. About all the issues – big and small – that I’m wringing my hands about. This blog has become therapy. You have, like it or not, become my therapists.

I’ve been feeling a little bit uncomfortable about this. I’ve written about this discomfort before; I won’t belabour the issue here. I’ll just say – I’m a bit uncomfortable. Part of this discomfort has to do with the not-altogether-pleasant feeling that I’m doing a little bit too much dwelling on certain issues (To worry or not to worry about declining naps, that is the question/Whither ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the pains of outrageous sleep habits/Or take arms against this troubled sleep). It is possible, I think, that I might be more inclined to just let some issues go if I did not have a forum in which to drag these issues for flogging again and again and again…

Then again, I might have already driven myself insane with the effort of containing all of these issues within the confines of one tired brain, if I hadn’t had this outlet.

I am, for the moment, comforting myself with the latter idea. Therapy is good – no? – even if one never intended to lay bare one’s soul for therapizing (wd? sp?). So I’m trying to chill out a little bit about the hand-wringing. I’ll probably feel better once I get back into the groove of visiting other blogs and lending an ear to other hand-wringers. I’ve been so remiss in this lately, for which I apologize. I’ve been visiting, but not talking. I need to get talking again… that’s what drew me into this community in the first place: the conversation. And the first step toward really good, really fruitful conversation comes with relaxing one’s guard, letting go of one’s full preoccupation with one’s own issues (not to mention, letting go of one’s preoccupation with one’s preoccupation with one’s own issues, holy hell) and saying what one really thinks and feels so that one can learn what others really think and feel. Relaxing, speaking and listening.

So… Hi! I’m Her Bad Mother, and I’m a bit of a basket case these days! A lot of a basket case! Stressed, and tired! In love with my daughter, but getting my ass kicked by her, and by motherhood generally!

How are you?