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BErKaNa: Growth. Rebirth. Birch Tree.

small, beautiful things


January 11th, 2010

Wondering @ 12:14 am

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Am a bit frustrated at being awake, but since I am, I found my way back here. I cannot believe that an entire year has gone by without me journaling. I have been writing life down, every day, but to not pull together more cohesively than posts on Facebook seems just odd. But then again, the way life has been the last year, snippets of info, thoughts, ideas -- instead of long, thoughtful, crafted posts -- has been the pace of things.

I do lie in bed often, nursing Maeve to sleep, thinking of things to write about, but by the time she is done, I, too, have drifted off, or have lost the essence and desire of the piece.

Often, I feel the urge, but not the creativity, and an emptiness descends into that place that writes. *shrug*

Sometimes I feel the future in my bones, and it holds more flow and more writing.

Like today, I read a book while sitting in the sun, drinking a beer. Not feeling the need to do anything but that -- for the first time, literally, in years. Was a crazy moment of quiet, joyous recharging. In that rather stolen moment, I sensed more to come, a balancing that feeds on itself, because of shifts in Maeve's independence and capabilities and because of others fitting well in the place that I have wholly filled in her life. Change, change, change.

I have been happy to be the big piece for her, and I am also now happy to shift subtly to something different, but equal.

I am extraordinarily happy to know that I am still here, vibrantly so, though quietly fallow, after these three years. No regrets and angst over the former shift, but also feeling deeply in my bones the reaching into this new one. So much to explore that is new, and to rediscover old loves.

Now, back to that book, because the computer cannot take it all. :)
 
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From:lapartera
Date:January 11th, 2010 01:34 pm (UTC)
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I imagine that many of your readers won't understand these three years. But I do and I salute you for honoring this time with your daughter. Yes, it changed you, but yes also, you will find the pieces of your former self that you want to find.

I have so often been brought up short by the realization that the "me" of before kids, would not have liked the "me" that resulted -- but the "me" of now would not have missed those years and those changes for anything. Any major life experience brings with it changes that can be incomprehensible to those who have not experienced them. You are taking your path one step at a time. That is how it is done!

I also wanted to say that you don't need to apologize for nursing a 3 year old. In many human cultures this is normal -- or even short. I didn't nurse that long, but only because my boys decided a little after a year that they were done with that. I wasn't, but they were, and I had to let them lead the weaning. I suggest you let Maeve lead it, too. She will!
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From:writeanya
Date:January 19th, 2010 02:06 am (UTC)
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Thank you for this. Yes, all of what you said is true, and also I feel no apology for nursing M this "long." It is simply that the time it takes to parent in this way means that often I lose my oomph to pursue those other "lofty" goals. That said, I am also sure that I will pursue them as the time is freed.

That said, about weaning...I have let her lead, until about 2 weeks ago when I've let her know that it is time for her to have "nummies" when she is ready to nap, or go to bed, or when she is injured. This is because anytime she has down time, she wants to nurse. If she (and I) are relaxing in the afternoon, and she is watching a video while I cook dinner, the call for nummies is constant and insistent. And, I would love to just sit and do that and nothing else, but it is unrealistic. She also still nurses 2-5 times a night, on average, 4 times. Again, I am happy to provide what she needs...and would love some somewhat uninterrupted sleep again some day.

The kicker, however, is I just had my FSH and estradiol checked. 11.4 and 20, respectively. The doc says, "If you want even a chance at having a second, you have to stop breastfeeding, pronto." I am starting acupuncture/chinese herbs, nettle & red raspberry infusions this week. Should pick up some red clover, too, now that I think of it. However, all of this is just freaking depressing and sad to me. I know we are going to have to work hard, and there's no guarantees, of course. Never is. But the idea of stopping breastfeeding, pronto, just doesn't jibe with me, and it pretty much is tearing me apart. I guess we'll just continue with the slow, slow cutback and see how it goes with the natural treatments.

And, working on the grieving and the acceptance of what might happen -- which is we will have one wonderful child and no more. It is hard to be both in a place of "let's do this" and hope, and mourning at the same time, but that is how my mind works. Feh.

Please to be adding any advice or remedies for aging here. :) And thank you for the ear, and wisdom.
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From:lapartera
Date:January 25th, 2010 01:16 am (UTC)
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Be aware that the numbers mean very little. Our hormone levels fluctuate from minute to minutes, so they might have been 11.4 and 20 at that moment but in an hour they could be very different. More to the point -- are you having any menopausal symptoms? Are you menstruating again? Regularly? Any hot flashes? Vaginal dryness? Decreased libido? Night sweats? Mind you plenty of women go through menopause without any of these symptoms other than cessation of menses. But if you are menstruating regularly (and of course breastfeeding can interfere with this, too) then you are likely to be fertile.

As for asking her to nurse only when it's good for both of you at this point that seems very reasonable! She is old enough to understand this and for you to expect it. Of course she'll put up a fuss, but if you're consistent, then eventually she'll get it. Challenging times!

Whether weaning will improve your chances of pregnancy is unknown. Plenty of women get pregnant while nursing, especially after the first six months. You are well past that. But if you're not menstruating regularly, breastfeeding might be the cause.

Best wishes!
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From:writeanya
Date:January 25th, 2010 06:59 am (UTC)
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ah, thanks for this! very much has improved my perspective. i've been menstruating again since maeve was 18 months old. regularly, with some odd blips here and there. none of the other issues...though, yannow, i'm nursing and co-sleeping -- decreased libido? sure! :) i suspect with more sleep, that could change.

everything is so new to me with regards to these issues because my mom, grandmother and aunt had all had hysterectomies due to endo/tumors/excessive bleeding by my age. also, all had kids in their 20s. i don't have their plumbing (thank god), so have no references on "normal" for my family. or even "what happened to you when menopause started?" i've pretty much figured out that i think one ovary isn't working -- the fluids are just not the same as the other side during ovulation -- massively decreased. *shrug* we shall see how it all works out, with the acupuncture, herbs, and some good nettle/red raspberry infusion teas.

the discussions about "nummies" are decreasing now in the third week. she has a cold, and tells me that she needs them because she is sick -- and certainly it is a reasonable request. but her time nursing is reduced, by her hand. it is challenging, all of it, but i can see the slow shift happening. i'm just going to see what the next step is once this one firmly "takes."

thank you again for the encouragement. so. very. helpful.

BErKaNa: Growth. Rebirth. Birch Tree.

small, beautiful things