Guilt FREE Mom

I was enjoying myself with my friends and family. Having a grand ole’ time when suddenly GUILT TOOK OVER ! I felt tremendous guilt for having so much light hearted fun. I felt guilt for not thinking about Jack or worrying about my daughter. Once I talked some sense into myself I realized other Mom’s must feel this way on occasion? I cannot be the only one?! I cannot be the only Mommy who gets consumed with the “I SHOULDS “AND “I SHOULD NOTS”. So I was inspired to write¬†this post! Thanks a lot Baby Jack for inspiring me yet again!
Guilt.
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That word has plagued me a lot lately. Before losing Jack the guilt came in a few different forms. Mostly around not being a good enough Mother, not being a good enough Wife or not working hard enough in my business. I think that is a feeling that many of us feel as Women. GUILT. We are taught to think and behave a certain way according to the standards society has set for us. We are taught that we need to feel a certain way, be a certain way, have certain things perfectly organized… shit, have brownies made for school events all the while making sure your hubby gets a proper foot rub in before bed! Oh and … work a full time job! There is just to much out there for us to grab at to be become MORE PERFECT. I have a should and should not list that lives on repeat in my head and it drives me crazy.
These list could go on and on and we can constantly aim to be more and more perfect… but when does it become enough? When is our best good enough? Ive learned through losing my son that the things that were causing me to feel guilt and as if I were not good enough were absolutely petty. No one else in the world felt like I needed to be doing more… I was the only one putting that pressure on myself. I was deciding for myself that I needed to be better in all of the areas, and my good was not good enough. That type of pressure can eat you ALIVE, and steal all of your joy.
I would have thoughts like “you are just not quit thin enough.” “you are just not quit smart enough.” “Who will read your writing, you aren’t quite talented enough.” “You aren’t quite affectionate enough to your family. Gotta get better at that.” “You aren’t quite loving enough towards your husband. Gotta get better at that.” I remember a moment when Scarlett would not cooperate and get up and go to school for me. She threw a massive tantrum, she threw things at me, she refused to listen. I had been up very late, lacked sleep, and lacked patience. We had had a long weekend together and I was exactly feeling peaceful and upbeat. She snapped, and I got right on her level and snapped back. I yelled at my 4 year old. I started to toss things around my house, I started to yell and shout. I started to yell just as loud as she was. Once I came to my senses the guilt ate me alive!! “Anita you should have been BETTER in that moment. You are a terrible Mom!” I used hurtful words to myself and I was hard on myself for the rest of my day. I was a very imperfect Mom in that Moment. There were many days in her 3’s that I reacted to her in that way and I would call myself “Bad Mom.” I look back on those days now and realize… Scarlett does not remember. She had no idea that I lost my cool in those moments. She does remember me hugging her, loving her and doing my very best. So am I a bad Mom? Absolutely NOT. I am a Good no… Great MOM who had a real human moment and lost my cool. She survived, I survived and we are doing okay! We are doing better than OKAY. When it was happening I slapped myself with a giant BAD MOM LABEL and let the guilt take over. But alas… we are okay. The okayiest I have ever been, and she is a rock star of a little girl who knows her Mommy¬†loves her.
I am learning that right where I am, in this moment and the effort I put forward IS GOOD ENOUGH. I am strong enough, present enough, smart enough, happy enough, I am a good enough Mother and I am a good enough Wife. The small stuff… it isn’t worth my mental energy to sweat. I was talking to a good friend today about feeling self conscious walking up to a crowd of people and talking to them. I realized while sharing with her, that I no longer feel afraid to put myself out there. I have quickly stopped caring what other people think, because I stopped caring so much what I think about myself, which in turn makes other people think I am more confident and out going… which is what I wanted all along anyway!
This weekend I felt guilty about having fun. It was the 4th of July holiday and I was spending countless hours reminding myself that I should not be smiling so much and laughing so much. I just lost my son not much more than a month ago and here I am laughing and having the time of my life with my friends and family. Through the weekend a sudden thought came over me.. “Would your Son want you to be miserable on his behalf or would he want you to have fun? Your son is not living on this earth and you are. Bringing honor to his life by laughing and smiling… thats a good thing.” So another moment of guilt … and I squashed it.
So Mom’s of the world, lets make an aggreement and learn from my Son! The people you love and the people who love you are not expecting all of these “shoulds” and “should nots” from you. They are not expecting you to be as perfect as you expect your self to be. Would you talk to your friends and loved ones the way you talk to yourself? No way! You would show the some grace! So lets do that together. Lets show ourselves some more grace.

July 4th : Mission Stay on Track!

Who’s on a mission to maintain progress through this holiday weekend?!?

I have been on one heck of a health and fitness mission since having Baby Jack. Mostly because I am really focused on losing the baby weight so that I can get pregnant again and feel comfortable in my own skin while gaining more baby weight!

So here is my game plan for staying on track today! Who’s with me?!

1. Drink water non stop
2. Coffee and tea early in the day!
3. If you must have a drink go for vodka and a sugar free mixer and limit yourself to 1 or 2 at the end of the night! If you must have 1 glass of wine, not the bottle!
4. Stay active all day!

5. Eat all of the veggies!!
6. Do not starve yourself until you get to your party! Eat your usual meals!
7. Make it public that you are on a mission to stay on track!
8. If people get aggressive about you eating their food, tell them you’re allergic!
9. Get a good workout in first thing in the morning!13532958_10209765992968015_7937414339854600934_n
10. Take a photo of yourself this morning and remind yourself of how good you feel and are looking on your meal plan!
11. Those foods will be there when you hit your fitness goals!
12. Chew Sugar Free gum!
13. Have a taste of the foods you want, just don’t eat full servings of everything!
14. Find a diet accountability partner that will be at the party!
15. Remember you are there for the company not the food!

Remembering Jack Pt. 1

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Tomorrow is Baby Jack’s memorial. We have decided to host a very small BBQ with just our close family. I am not exactly sure why I wanted it this way, but it is what my heart is telling me to do. Go small and simple. Instead of planning a larger event to celebrate the life of my Son I wanted to have a few peaceful days at home with the people who spent the most time around him… I also wanted to have some days of peace to really just remember him and the day I had with him.

 

Oh the day I had with him. The most precious day that I would pay all of the money in my bank account to repeat over and over again. I would give anything to just see him, hold him, hug him, hear him breath.

Every night hands clasped tightly, eyes heavy, his ashes pressed against my heart. Every single night I fall asleep thinking about his face, his lips, his cheeks and in every passing moment I strive to hang on to the memory I have of my son Jack. In 12 days his due date will come and go! I am absolutely not looking forward to that day. Most Mama’s I talk to about infant loss tell me that is the most terrible day. It seems like each day it is becoming harder and harder to remember his eyes, nose and cheeks. I find myself staring at his photos more and more these days as I work to keep him fresh in my mind. It brings me so much pain to think that I could be beginning to forget my Son. One thing that does not leave my memory is the chilling cold touch of his life less lips touching mine. It was like ice… the most beautiful precious ice. I remember just rubbing my lips against his for head and singing to him. I watched my tears splash is porcaline face. I listened to my husband pace the room in tears as I sang “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star with gut wrenching pain in my heart.” I would stare at his lips wishing they were full of pink color rather than that terrible dark dark red.

“Mommy will never forget you. You are my star in the sky. I love you so so much.” I repeated for a solid 30 minutes straight as I knew my time with my baby was coming to an end. I knew in a matter of minutes the nurse would be back to take him away and that would be the very last moment I would have with that beautiful creature. I enjoyed 8 months of his life inside of me and all I got was 1 day with him in my arms. I will never forget those 48 hours as they were both the most painful hours of my life and the most beautiful hours of my life.

 

“I am so sorry, I cannot find a heart beat.” When I heard those words come out of the nurses lips that late night I came un raveled. I came un done. I think I might have felt my heart explode like a fire work into my chest. I felt the most disturbing type of pain run its way from my throat to my heart and down into my stomach. I laid back on the table and I howled. I laid back on the table and I screamed. I help Eric’s hands and I begged him “Please Eric pllleeeeaassee Nooo. Tell me this isn’t happening. My poor poor baby. My poor son!” Eric tells me today that the noises, the weeps, the cries and the moans that came from my body were something completely out of this world. He told me I sounded like an animal in horrific pain. He said that is officially the type of noise that only a Woman losing her child would make and he would never ever forget it. I don’t think I could forget it either.

 

I looked around in panic as I started to come out of the crying spells. I looked at the nurse and I realized I would have to deliver this baby. I realized that I would have to deliver a full term sized baby and give him right back to the earth. There would be no months and day so cuddles, nursing, laughter and life. There would only be sadness after the pain. Lets all just be real here… child birth is painful. It is one of the most intense animalistic pains you will ever feel. I knew from my experience with Scarlett’s birth that I was in for one hell of a ride. Terror came over me. Sheer panic coursed through my veins. “Please just vie me a C- Section! Please just take him out of me. I don’t want to feel that pain for no reason. I don’t want to labor for nothing! This is horrible just fucking terrible!!”. I started to hyperventilate. I could not control my anger, my sadness or my panic. Finally I was given something for the anxiety. “Anita you are going to be induced. It is the best option for you and your future. I am so sorry that you have to go through this pain. We will do whatever possible to make this a painless experience.” I know that the nurses were doing their best to make me feel better. But there was nothing that they could say to take away the fact that I was going to give birth the next morning, to a deceased baby.

 

After it was decided that I would be induced I was wheeled into a different room with a large bed and a small couch for poor Eric. Oh poor poor Eric! He has had to sleep on those little beds to many times now! My Mother in law came through the door and I instantly felt a sense of peace. She hugged us and told us that everything was going to be okay. She has a really great way of making every one around her feel like everything is going to be okay! That’s Karen! She is a lady in charge and always makes sure she gets shit done! She came in the room and we felt like… Okay Karen is here… things are going to be okay. Thats when I was given the pills to be induced and I fell fast asleep. I remember holding my belly and rubbing Jack’s body. I remember tears flowing hard as I caressed the outline of his body under my skin. I remember willing him to come back to life. I remember begging him to wake up.

 

At 3 AM I woke up to contractions but they were mild. I opened my eyes and the pain and panic settled in as soon as my brain came to. I ran into the bathroom and I threw up. I sat on the bathroom floor and I sobbed. I begged him to come back to life. I begged him with every inch of my soul to come back to Mommy. I looked up at the ceiling and I cursed a God that I felt like I had left me. “Are you there dude? Did you just dip out on us? Why us? Why him? Why me? Why now?” I have to admit I said some pretty salty things to God that night… and sadly that night I felt like there was no God! Finally sleep over took my body and I crawled back into bed. As I was climbing back into my bed my new Nurse entered the room and started to take my vitals. She could see my suffering and she stood over me and rubbed my back and whispered something into my ears. I do not remember what she said, but it calmed my soul and put me back to sleep.

 

…. and then it was 9 AM