|I need to fix daddy's photos by Irargerich, cc license|
My unexpected leave of absence has been due to something pretty wonderful, actually. I'm pregnant and looking forward to welcoming our new family member in October.
The first trimester was pretty rough. When I was pregnant with Cadence, I experienced the dreaded morning sickness - or more accurately morning, noon, and night sickness - along with general fatigue. Through that period, I was able to function well at work and then just crash the minute I got home. This time around, the symptoms were either worse, or the different circumstances of taking care of a toddler all day made them seem worse. Either way, February through April is a bit of a blur and I am just now finding the time and energy to think and to write a bit.
The timing is good. I'm in need of some serious time to sit with the changes my body and brain are experiencing and process them. Similar to my last pregnancy, the nausea and fatigues are now making way for some intense emotions and mood swings. Previously, I dubbed this my "pregnancy rage." It felt like madness. I was able to recognize that my emotional reactions to events were not to scale, so I coped by waiting until they subsided before addressing any issues. However, they did not subside, rather fermenting as I ruminated until I exploded in an unhealthy outburst.
I had hoped that this particular pregnancy symptom was more due to the stress and tension I was experiencing at work (when the board voted to dissolve the organization) . Alas, I believe I must now accept that this is just me. The rage has already been bubbling up, and over, on a couple of occasions.
I've been contemplating how to handle things differently this time so that I'm better able to keep my cool - especially in my role as mom to toddler. I'm curious how much of my emotional reactions can be attributed to stress and depletion and what is "purely" hormonal. I'm grateful that I have gone through this once and can avoid repeating some the same mistakes. For example, I know that I need to talk issues out, sooner than later, even when I know I'm not my best, rational self. And I should let others drive whenever possible because pregnancy road rage is especially ugly.
And I need to redouble efforts at self care, ask for help, and laugh at myself more because, really, this is madness.
I'll be writing again. Very soon. Promise.