29/11/2014

Feeling like I'm drowning.

I feel this blog has always been a space where I can share, especially when it's a topic not many of us tend to talk about. It should be a safe space, and I think it is, but I still recognize that I'm putting personal details out there on the internet. Now that I live in a small town (ok, it's pretty similar to Halifax, but I used to live here for 6 years, so it feels different), details of my life can really circulate the community and I can come face to face with them in real life a thousand times more often. Blogging was such an amazing escape and a place to vent and just put things out there, but now it has real life consequences that can affect my income and my family. So far, it's been incredibly positive, but that's just what people are sharing with me.... So I've been toying with saying goodbye to Mama Haze.

There's more. Part of the reason this blog space has been so quiet is because I don't have time for it. I knew I was going to pull back on writing to figure a few things out. To sort out where I want this blog to go, but also so that my relationships with my husband and my children and even my relationship with myself could heal and grow.


I'll be  honest, I feel like I'm drowning.

We were hit with that horrible gastro that's going. As if in synch with the virus, immediately, my entire world crumbled all around me. Everything was chaos and shit and I was losing my mind and making really dumb decisions. Matt and I were fighting, TV was on ALL the time and we've been blowing tons of money on convenience foods and eating out. I locked myself out of the van TWICE in a week. Matt and I are not connecting anymore and sometimes we aren't even talking. We'll be ok. But this time in our lives is rough. I even reached out for help with the kiddos, but for one reason or another, the grandparents weren't able to assist. I grumbled and accepted and I get it but I don't like it either. I feel like we both need a break from the responsibilities of life.

Thank the universe for friends. They pulled me up, they fed me, they cleaned for me, they fed the dog for me. They gave me time to breathe.

I'm still struggling. I think a lot of the turmoil in our lives is because of me.

Can you relate?

We sat down and instead of nit picking and getting into it, I expressed what I was feeling in terms of needing more emotional support from him, and we also re-scheduled our lives. Because Matt is doing his PhD and needs a lot of time to devote, but we have to juggle my work schedule, we've come up with a new schedule for our family.

Now we have a 1/2 day a week where we are both off together so we can tag team and get important tasks done around the house. Otherwise either one of us is working.  I want to create a date night for us too but there's always something that we need to get done in order to just live... We're moving houses this week. I think once we're moved in and everything is in it's place, a weight will be lifted. Financially we're finally ok and breaking even instead of scraping our savings. But we're always worried that's going to change. So I'm going to take a few liberties and spend a little bit more than we're used to this Christmas. I just feel like we could use the boost. It's not even on fun things either - just practical stuff like socks without holes!

I'm trying so hard to be an independent, strong, creative woman. It's so important to me not to let this go but I feel like this need is overwhelming my marriage. I'm recognizing how much I take from Matt in order to be this independent woman. Sometimes I get so fucking pissed. I hate to group any gender together on any subject, but I don't think men understand how hard we have to fight as women to be in these positions as mamas and business owners and creative individuals and as one of the few women in our community who actually speak up when things are wrong! How do I juggle this with being an equal partner in my marriage?

In order to manage I've been trying to be uber supportive of Matt, but I think it's turning into treating him like one of my children - so that's not working either.

Any advice on how else I can keep my independence and sense of self but also keep my marriage? ha...ha... ha?

23/10/2014

As a working mama...


Just over two years ago, Love and Anchor was born. Shortly there after, we had Rowan. Now, two years later we're living in a different province with a growing business + I've started working PT as a photographer outside of the biz and Matt has started his PhD. I am now a working mama outside the home.

Life is insane.  It's very busy and full of intense decisions we're making on a daily basis. There are so many new things have come into our lives. We've been looking at buying a house, but have decided to rent for longer (scouting for a new place that will support our lifestyle and our needs). Finances have been all over the map. We're trying to clean up and tidying up the business side of the business as we're finally done wedding season. We're getting really involved in our community and passionate about our hobbies. I've met an amazing group of women who are the most supportive people ever and are babywearers! I facebook chat or talk with them daily and it is a relief to work things out with them. They've fed us when we've been sick, recommended countless solutions to our crazy life problems and have provided me with many a giggle.

Rowan is in Montessori school 3 days a week and Elsa has been home with Matt while I work as well as at work with me which is what I wanted to share most about. While I am IN LOVE with how supportive my employer is - it really is the PERFECT place to bring your bebe to work, it's really not ideal that she's at work with me. Physically for both of us, it's not a good idea for her to be with me while I'm trying to photograph a client. I photographed the TINIEST newborn today and I can't imagine hearing Elsa crying in the background or her crawling on over and poking the tiny baby in her tiny eyes.

And yes. She's crawling.

Super freak! Super freaky!

If I'm truthful with myself, it is a hindrance to my performance to be half doing my job while I'm trying to care for her. The whole reason why she's there, other than the fact that I can take the pressure off of Matt and give him more PhD days, is that I've been battling the pump. It is the devil I tell you! For me anyways. It's another one of those parenting moments I seem to keep having these days.  I gave it a good go and tried everything that was suggested and researched, but I just can't do it. I can't pump. It's so stressful and it's adding nothing but shit to our lives. It's shit when I try to pump and it's shit that I'm not yielding enough regardless of my awesome supply to get through 4 days of work.

The guilt that comes with having good supply and not pumping and .... wait for it... choosing formula .... is intense! But it is the choice we're making. I'm both excited to share it and loathed all at the same time. We'll be supplementing with formula when I'm at work and breastfeeding as much as we can the rest of the time. I am definitely a breast is best kinda gal but am excited to experience bottle feeding my child at 6 months after being exclusively breastfed (up until 5 months). I feel like it will open up a whole new series of emotions and experiences that I can bring to my own life but also relate to the life of my clients. I've been learning that formula feeding is not the devil and it can actually be pretty great. 

Today was her first day with Matt using formula. He said it went really well. Near the end she wanted the boobies and she got them. She came to work with me for the last bit of the day and got her mama milk which I think is fair for a first day! We're going to order formula online from the UK. I'm actually excited. It's organic and goat and comes highly recommended. The UK seems to have awesome guidelines on what you can put in baby food.

You can also make your own formula which I had no idea was a thing. It's also pretty exciting, I just don't have the time to do it and we really need something reliable right now.  If things calm down I'd consider it for sure.

For now, we're just doing our thing, surviving the only way we know how. We try to keep it positive when things get crazy and work through it when we can't see the positive anymore.

I'm really happy to be back at work. It's surprised me how well I'm dealing with it. I thought I'd really miss being away from home but I love that Rowan gets to go to school and I love that Elsa gets time with her Papa. It's a win win for all.

17/09/2014

UPDATE


Today was my birthday. 29. 29 years o' age.

Wow. I need to process that.

So much is happening right now that life is an emotional roller coaster. I'm high on creativity and dreams of success and uber happiness and the come crashing down with G force to stress city. There's no time to think. Just do. I think I've gained 10-15 lbs in stress and road trip weight. Matt's started his PhD (did I mention stress) and Rowan has started school. Mae-mae up there is 16lbs now and almost crawling. I'm starting a new job as a photographer for a maternity studio and investing in a new blog venture.

I'm seeking balance and unfortunately that means letting some things go. I've been absent from this space in order to make room to run my business and not loose my mind. It's been hard because I miss you and I miss getting everything out in to the blogging world, but it was really helpful. During this time away I've reevaluated and challenged myself to consider what I'm writing about and why I'm writing. I felt stuck. I felt stalled. So I've decided Mama Haze will be coming to a close in order to make room for a bigger project, one I can grow with and build community with, which has always been my goal with blogging whether I knew it or not. I'll be checking in here every once and while and finishing out in December. In January, I'll be launching a new project called N O U R I S H (working title) with a dear friend. I'm hoping to be behind the scenes in the beginning, but I'm already getting excited and creating content. Are you surprised? ANyway, it's going to be really great and I hope you'll move with me to that new space. Thank you for sticking it out with me here and I look forward to finishing out Mama Haze with you. It's been a really important and special place for me to grow and for that I am so grateful.

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