Confession: I Give My Baby Alcohol

I give my baby alcohol.  On a regular basis.

(Did I just hear everyone’s jaw hit the floor?  Excellent!  Mission: Shock the Masses was a success!)

Now that I have your attention, let me tell you the rest of the story –

My 18-month-old son loves me SO much that he wants to taste everything that I drink.  Since I’m a CPA, I drink wine or beer probably three to four evenings a week.  No sooner do I open that beer or pour that glass of wine but my little guy toddles over to me and says “Mmm, mmm, mmm” expectantly, dancing from one foot to the other, barely containing his impatience.  If I don’t get the message right away, he’ll reach up for me and say “P” (translation: up).

Once I pick him up and put him in my lap, I have to be on my toes because he will LUNGE for my glass, arm outstretched.  We haven’t had any party fouls (i.e. spilled drinks) yet, but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time.

So what do I do?  I dip my pinky in my glass, get just a little droplet on my finger, and  put it in his mouth to let him taste it.  And he doesn’t hate it, which really kinda blows my mind.  But he doesn’t throw a fit when I tell him that’s all he gets, so that’s good.

At this point he usually loses interest in me, slides himself down off my lap, and goes off in search of something to throw / bang / push across the floor / eat off the floor.

And that’s it!  Not so terrible after all, eh?

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This confession is brought to you by Athena’s Antics. Pop on over and say hello!

To submit your own confession, check out The Confessional page.

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Confession: Maybe I’m Not Cut Out For This

I used to be very maternal. Everyone said so.

I used to adore kids. Everyone saw.

I used to want eight of my own. I told everyone.

Now, well now I’m not so sure I was meant to be a mother. Nobody knows.

I remember perfectly when my son was born. I can tell you my birth story in detail, which I’m sure I will sometime. But I cannot tell you that amazing connection mothers feel the moment they hold their children. I can’t tell you about that because I didn’t feel it.

I just wanted to go to sleep. I looked over at my darling boy, said he looked like his father, and passed out.

When the nurses brought him to my room so I could take care of him, I kept asking them to take him away. I wasn’t ready. I needed more sleep, more time.

Slowly that connection, that amazement, came. My son was in the hospital for two weeks after he was born. When I sat with him in the nursery I would hold him and stare at him for hours. No one else wanted to come visit because it was boring for them to watch me stare. He was perfect, couldn’t they see?

newborn sleeping

I got lucky. I had an easy baby. I loved being a mom. I loved watching him explore the world around him and take everything in; I loved being there for major moments; I loved how he would curl his body into mine for comfort. I had never known a love so strong. I was obviously meant for this.

But now, now things are different. And I haven’t yet told anyone.

Now I get bored watching him sleep. I get excited for the milestones, but only because finally the hard work of getting there is over. I get uncomfortable when we cuddle and crave a cigarette more than his warmth. I get so irritated when he always comes to me for comfort — why can’t he go to Jack?

I feel like a failure. I feel like I don’t belong. I feel like, maybe, someone made a mistake. Maybe this isn’t what I was supposed to do. Maybe I’m not cut out for this.

Maybe I’m not cut out for the sleepless nights and the tantrums. Maybe I’m not cut out for being late to every single thing I ever try to do. Maybe I’m not cut out for struggling to get shoes on for half an hour, or meticulously teaching every letter a thousand times, or wiping the same butt for the millionth.

I feel like I’m suffocating. Truth be told, I still have it easy. My son is a good kid, an easy kid. So why is this so damn difficult?

I wake up and he’s there. I go to the bathroom and he’s there. I smoke a cigarette and he’s there. I try to eat a piece of chocolate and he takes it. I go to sleep and he steals my spot. Every moment of my life is centered around this fabulous being.

Don’t get me wrong, I know he’s amazing. I adore him. And I make sure he has all that he needs. But I do not feel like a good mother. I feel like I’m failing him. I feel like I don’t love him enough, even though I know that I do.

I feel like this should be easier. I feel like I’m waiting for a day that will never come. I feel like I should cherish our moments far more than I do.

I feel like I’m not cut out for this, but I push through because I know I have to be.

I just hope I get that initial spark back. I hope I can love him the way I’m supposed to. I hope this will stop, someday.

And maybe that hope means I am cut out for this, after all.

baby swing

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This post is part of the Confessional Series, written by Tempest Rose. To submit your own, please head over to The Confessional page.

 

Tempestuous Living

This is an average day in my life — the life of an addict, a mother, a writer, someone with bipolar and anxiety. It’s boring, and it’s missing pieces, and not every day is the same, but it is what it is.

3:30am I wake up. I need a cigarette. I feel around the bed, Holden’s there. Can’t smoke. I squint to see the boys cuddling and smile to myself. I go back to sleep.

7:30am I wake up. I roll over. I try to go back to sleep but I know it won’t come. I check my phone and my computer and I forget to put my glasses on until the tenth time of wondering why everything’s all fuzzy.

7:35am I need a cigarette. I look around the bed again. Holden’s gone. He must have woken up and gone back to his room at some point in the last four hours. I light up. I take a few drags and hear his door. He’s up. He comes into my room and I beg him to let me finish my cigarette, but he doesn’t. I need to turn on his show. We yell at each other for a few minutes, but I don’t want to wake Jack. I get up.

7:37am I go into the living room and turn on the TV. I go into the kitchen and throw some frozen french toast in the microwave, playing on my phone as I wait for it to be done. I get juice ready. I bring everything into the living room and make sure Holden’s all set up.

7:40am I finish the bit of my cigarette that hasn’t burned away. I check my Reader for attention-grabbing headlines and my favorite bloggers’ names. I scroll through a few posts and save a few more to read later. I light another cigarette. I waste away precious time scrolling through my Reader and playing online games and staring at the computer screen, hoping it will give me something to do. Eminem (formerly known as M&M) messages me a Good Morning and things look up a bit.

8:30am I find Holden’s clothes and get his food ready and put everything in the car and make sure the only thing I have to do is put his clothes on and go. I chase him around the house for what feels like an hour and throw my hands up in defeat at least three times and throw his clothes down on the floor at least four before I nearly chokehold him into his pants and shirt. He’s bawling and I’m screaming and my dad’s giving us googly eyes and Jack’s in the bedroom on the computer or sleeping. I make sure, one last time, that everything is ready.

9:00am We’re already running late and Holden has taken off his pants. We go through the routine mentioned above, again, only with a little more gusto. He doesn’t want to go to school.

9:15am After successfully bribing Holden with treats or technology or toys or friends, I get his pants on, throw him over my shoulder, and put him in the car. He’s fine until I go to close the door when he sticks his little hand out and I catch myself before crushing it. I tell him I’ll get whatever he wants when I get him, but it doesn’t please him. Instead of slamming the door on his hand I slowly place it closed and bump my butt against it to finalize the deal. He screams.

9:30am We get to daycare and Holden walks in just fine but clutches my leg when I go to leave and it turns into a big thing with his teacher having to grab him away from me as I scurry out the door. I am free. I head home, big things are planned for the day.

9:40am I stop at WaWa and get my coffee and breakfast and keep my head down but take in all the people. There are too many of them; they are too close to me. I put my head down further — maybe I will radiate off a forcefield and they will stop getting so damn close. They don’t. I pay and hurry to my car.

9:45am I am home. Sweet, sweet home. I bounce onto the bed and light a cigarette and grab my computer and tell myself I have hours to do my chores so a little writing won’t hurt. That’s my mistake. I thought about the chores. I shouldn’t have thought about them, I should have just done them. They won’t get done for hours. I try to write but nothing comes. I put on a TV show and rock and sway and think maybe just this once some heroin would calm me down. It takes a few hours to get that thought out of my head, to subdue the rocking.

Noon How did it get so late? What have I even done? I look at my computer and seventeen posts are waiting for me to read them and my new post area is blank. What happened? Why am I still rocking? I obviously must get up — something has to be done. I go into the kitchen and then into the living room and back into the kitchen. I think about all that needs to be done and retreat back into my room. Maybe I’ll take a nap. I look over at my meds and decide I need to calm down, maybe I’ll just take my nighttime med now. Maybe. Yeah, right. I do it. There’s no maybe. I tell myself I’ll skip tonight’s dose to make up for it but I know I won’t. I’ll just run out sooner.

2pm I force myself up and about and do whatever chore is on my chore chart for the day. Maybe it’s dishes, or vacuuming, or mopping, or laundry. I half-ass it, but at least it’s done. I get myself a cute owl sticker and place it over today on the calendar. I feel successful. I’ll try to write again.

4pm I’m squirming around in bed and wishing heroin wasn’t so damn addictive. I’m paralyzed from moving but I can’t stop. I’m not even making sense to myself. I start talking to people online and I get awfully nervous for no apparent reason and it takes so much out of me I have to take a break. I rock and I sway.

5pm It’s time to get Holden from school. I force myself up and out and through town to get him. When I arrive, he doesn’t want to leave. I let him play for a few more minutes, obviously overstaying my welcome because his teachers just want to leave. I drag him out the door after they’ve bribed him with a balloon. We make our way home.

5:30 I keep myself busy doing I-don’t-know-what. Holden and I fight about something, Jack and I fight about more. I can’t sit down or I’ll rock.

7:00pm I get food and drink and DVD in hand and get my son all set up for bed and listen to his demands and run around doing everything he asks and change him and put his blanket on him and tell him I love him and Goodnight.

7:20pm I try to get to bed but Jack has to fix it because it’s messed up again and then he needs something and our space is so small I can’t get around him and I finally do and I light a cigarette and down my meds. I try to watch TV and I rock. And I stand on my head and I rock. And I watch some TV and I play a computer game and I rock.

8:25pm I sit at my computer. My legs are crossed. I uncross them. I stare at the screen. I re-cross them. I click on a post saved from this morning and I try to read and I skim and I make myself go back over the skimmed parts and I try really hard to devour every word. Eventually I give up and scroll to the bottom and click like. I open a new post and force myself to read every. single. word. and it still doesn’t sink in so I comment on the one paragraph that took. And I feel horrible because this has nothing to do with the writers’ abilities and everything to do with my fucking brain and its rebellion. I repeat the process of skimming posts and reading posts and crossing my legs and uncrossing my legs and chainsmoking.

8:32pm Sometimes I try to write. Like now, right now I’m writing and it feels good and everything is okay for a minute, but usually I get something like this:

My brain isn’t working and it’s driving me fucking mad.

My son’s hair looks cute.

BFEKuhdsfuihesnuigkbsjifnd

I just want to feel the keyboard under my fingers so it seems like I’m doing something remarkable.

On good nights, I will continue to write and write and everything will remain wonderful and I’ll go to bed around 10:30pm. On bad nights, I’ll give up and watch TV until I pass out around 9:00pm.

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I want to thank walkingcontradiction for this idea, and actually giving me inspiration to write something for once.

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What about you? What’s a day in your life?

Hair Cuts and M&Ms

I cut my son’s hair today and now it’s super short and I’m kind of mad but also very happy because now I don’t have to deal with those ungodly knots.

But it made me think about Bipolar parenting and how it affects our children. Other than depression, I haven’t had the chance since my diagnosis to sit and really see any cases in which my illness impacts my son. Until now.

Supposedly I’ve been hypomanic for a while now. I’m so confused I didn’t even know I could be hypomanic because I have Bipolar I and I thought that meant I only got full-fledged mania, but I was wrong. I can get hypomania and I have it, but none of the good aspects that come with it.

I mean, I’m getting shit done so that’s cool I guess, but I’m always anxious and irritated and making such rash decisions. Like, did I tell you that I am meeting Married Online Man? (Well we’ll obviously have to come up with a better name for him because that acronym is MOM and that’s just weird. And “Online Man” would be OM which is also “Other Man” so that’s out. Maybe just “Married Man”. My delightful M&M. Which I still don’t like because I don’t like to think of him as only married because there’s so much more to him but I guess it’ll have to do for now.)

Anyway, I’m meeting him soon. I probably won’t write about it much, but it’s happening. And while I’m fairly positive he’s not a crazy murderer, Luke seems to think otherwise and Nate is slightly uncomfortable with the whole thing but doesn’t want to tell me what to do so really I can’t know for sure. And either way, it’s pretty damn impulsive for me to meet someone from the internet. Even if I feel like we know each other because we talk every day.

Anyway anyway, Bipolar parenting. Cutting my son’s hair. It was so impulsive. I was giving him a bath and BAM I just couldn’t handle the knots anymore and got my rusty, dull kitchen scissors and chopped that shit off. And what if my son didn’t want his hair cut? What if I have a mini-meltdown once reality kicks in and I notice it’s really gone? What the hell have I done?

I mean, I know it’s only hair and it’ll grow back and it’s not a big deal but what other selfish, impulsive decisions could I make regarding my son’s life that my illness helps fuel that could actually harm him? Would I ever make such decisions? Will I be in the right mind enough to realize how idiotic I’m being?

This is the shit I get to think about now. I hope it will never come to that, I don’t think it will ever come to that, but something is absolutely going on. And I just had to write about it.

(p.s. Don’t forget to check out today’s guest post!)

Also he was not feeling getting his picture taken but this is the best I could do:

Confession: I’ve Been Telling the Truth

People have become so conditioned to keeping important shit bottled inside that they now hesitate to believe anyone who talks openly about their bad experiences.

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My stepdad used to sleepwalk into my room, naked, and sleep in my bed when I was little. I mention it a lot. It kinda screwed me up.

My stepdad also used to attempt to have sex with me when I was a teenager. I explode and scream the truth at him whenever we get in a fight. I try to talk to my friends about it. It did screw me up.

But because I talk about it, the people closest to me have started to overlook it.

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