Settling Down

Been melee’d in emotions high and low, not just lately but for the last million years it seems. There is so much to be thankful for. R got an amazing job as Director of Family Life for the Catholic Diocese of Lake Charles, LA. He gets to do exactly what he’s grown to love, and definitively help people build strong secure families. The town comes pre-loaded with friends: a friend for me, a friend for R, and a couple of friends for V. If there’s one thing I’m sure of it is that our children will have an amazing childhood in this swampy little town.

We’re giving birth to baby #2 in New Orleans. The job wasn’t secure for Lake Charles and we had to commit to a birth plan so we chose a mid-wife and birth center here, along with a 2 bedroom sublet and we’re doing fine. I much prefer the mid-wife I had picked out in California—I trusted her completely and she oozed an irresistible combination of professionalism and warmth. All of the toys in her lobby were wooden. She listened.so.well. She was going to facilitate a home birth, which has been my dream ever since the c-section with V. The experience itself was very scary, but in the last two years since it happened I’ve also relived it in horror via nightmares and daymares again and again and at this point I’ve cemented a negative perception in my brain of hospitals. The hospital has become the enemy.

My mid-wife now is an employee of the hospital. She is their first on staff mid-wife. She is very pro VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean), but since she is so new here she is very concerned with establishing a good reputation with the doctors and staff at the hospital. She is not a very good listener. After a couple of visits it became clear that my mid-wife in fact frightens me, as does the birthing center (which is basically the hospital). But I can’t switch care-givers now because I’m due in 2 weeks. So I hired a doula. She’s going to help me do most of the active laboring at home, where I’ll be able to relax and manage my pain without fear of anyone shoving equipment up me or into me or trying to convince me to have an epidural because they’re uncomfortable dealing with my pain.

I like my doula. I trust her. I think its going to work.

There is so much to be thankful for. My daughter clearly is a very loving personality. She is so affectionate and laughs so frequently. I hope I offer her enough joy in return—sometimes I feel like an overly melancholic mom. More often though I feel like an overly melancholic wife.

There is a lot to do in 2014 and 2015. My ambitions have only waned slightly. But my desire to nest is intense. I constantly dream about furniture. At any given moment I’ll be thinking about wether or not we should buy a mattress or use craigslist to find free ones or wether or not R should bike to work so we can save money or should we splurge and get a vehicle. What kind of vehicle am I imaging for us? A minivan. 

I’m just as disgusted as you are. But like I said I’ve thought a lot about this, and if we plan on having 3 or more kids, which seems inevitable, than a regular sedan won’t accommodate us. And this is where the self-loathing comes into play because I too find consumerism unattractive, but more than that I think its a frustration with the physical needs and limitations of the body. And that extends out to the obligations and responsibilities of parenthood—supervising the wellbeing of other people’s bodies.

I have to remind myself that I am entering the sacrificial stage of adulthood where I must give of my all to others, because it is due return for my own existence and wellbeing. To make it bearable though, I am determined to get good speakers and a decent piano for our new homestead.

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