Thursday, September 12, 2013

Ask Me How My Vacation Went

I'm sick.

And I don't just mean sick in the head (a rather crude way of putting "mentally interesting") but rather just plain sick.

There were several days on our vacation that I didn't get meals because I was in bed. One day I slept 18 hours. I had my signature mini panic attacks every time we talked about going to Longhorn Cavern. I had no energy. So upon arrival back home, I decided it was time to institute some changes.

I was vaguely aware of a book called Trust Your Intuition (look it up--it's a whopping $3 on Kindle), so I ordered it. It's about women, usually Mama Bears, who took it upon themselves to look into alternative medicine to help themselves or their family. So much of the book is about treating kids, and what do I need to know about natural childbirth? Still, there was much to glean. (Apparently citrus oil on the back of the neck helps with mood problems! Not that I'm quitting Prozac.)

It's time for "clean eating": good, simple foods; and for me in particular, no dairy or gluten and a massive reduction in sugar. A lot of the women in the book tout real food, a method of eating that involves massive consumption of cows and fat (my description should tell you how I feel about that). I've been down that path, and it's just too meaty for me--and when one real foodist says that vegetables are just a vehicle for more butter, I get suspicious. And I'm not giving up grains because that's a little freaky, and I'm not giving up beans because St. John of Rila ate them, and if they're good enough for a saint then they're good enough for me. I have a bread machine on the way (it was Chris's idea to get a new one instead of a thrift store purchase because, well, new ones come with instruction manuals) and a pack of Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Wonderful Bread Mix, made primarily of beans.

But clean eating means cooking. There's only one restaurant in town that I trust to have simple food--Mr. Chopsticks--and I'll go mad if I eat there all the time. So far, so good thanks to the help of frozen veggies I've had hiding in the freezer for some time. And now that Chris is back working, I'll have plenty of time to work on whatever weird creations tickle my fancy. Yesterday it was a flatbread made almost entirely of beans with sundried tomatoes and Italian seasoning. It's great.

So if you're mildly interested, I'll keep you updated on my holistic experience.

I think I need to reinstitute teatime.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

If I Had My Way ...

I'd have one kid. Just one.
Dorothy Elizabeth if it was a girl,
Titus Allen if it was a boy.

I'd vaccinate.

I originally thought I'd be an unschooling homeschooler,
but now I think I'd just send them to public schools
so Mommy could have some sanity time.

I'd adopt from foster care.
I'd do embryo adoption.
I'd do NaPro and have my own kid.

Instead,

I've got PCOS and can't conceive.
I've also got a mental disorder that requires a lot of treatment and a lot of drugs.

So,

I'm thinking of going on birth control of some sort
because having a baby and staying on drugs = birth defects,
and having a baby and not staying on drugs = disaster waiting to happen.

As for foster care,
those kids require a lot of work (that's no secret),
and I'm prone to a debilitating melancholia that is not conducive to helping a child who really needs help.

I see your kids on Facebook,
and I want tummy time with black and white flashcards
and the first day of kindergarten
and parent-teacher conferences

and I kinda wanna just drop a kid off at the library in the non-fiction section
and let them learn whatever the hell they want to.

Nine years of marriage
One miscarriage
One failed adoption
(and boy how it failed)

But,

you know what do I have?

A kick-ass art collection,
vacation time out the wazoo,
the two awesomest nieces ever,
the kind of marriage people dream of.

I still think,
"When I have kids ..."
but I'm getting over it
and learning to be proud of myself.

Still Don't Have Kids

One of my Facebook friends posted a list: 10 great reasons to have a large family. Thanks to foster care adoption, she has four children now. I think it's wonderful. I always love it when one of my friends whom I know from the infertility community triumphs in the end, usually in unexpected ways--God is good. But I'm thinking of compiling a list of the reasons to consider child-free living (I hate that term--it sounds too PC--but childlessness sounded too negative). I don't have a list now. I'm going on vacation at the end of the week, so I can get some serious thinking done then.

Meanwhile, I'm about to be an aunt again. Another niece--hooray! And yet--ouch. Why does that stupid sting of infertility never go away? I'm coming out of a depressed episode over it, but I'm picking out a thousand presents at the same time. Don't worry: Once she's here, it'll be a good thing. I just have some struggles to get through, and I'm hoping to fight through them well.

Adoption. Oh, adoption--you broke my little heart. I keep considering you out of obligation to the world or something--perhaps I feel obligated to take care of children or think I have to prove my pro-life-ness. But here's the thing: We tried adoption, and it was miserable. The agency stank, our lives were messes, the process was a nightmare. Everything fell apart. They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing multiple times and expecting different results. I wish we would just put our collective foot down and say no to adoption for good. But that leads me to my next point.

Chris and I have been dealing with the fact that I feel useless. That's probably the mental illness at work, but I've got to start thinking differently. I'm not useless ... at least that's the mantra I'm uttering until I believe it. "Doctor Who" has actually made a difference: "900 years of time and space, and I've never met someone who wasn't important." Chris says his needs are simple: work an honest job, hang out with me, travel, read, go to sporting events, go to church, etc. My needs, on the other hand, seem to be a bit more complex: don't do anything that isn't useful to someone other than yourself. So I never read and I'm too nervous to go to church and I'm completely stifled by this need to be productive, so I spend all my time on the computer or asleep and I hate myself for it. So we're going on vacation, which we haven't been able to do in ages. And I'm going to enjoy it. And I'm going to eat good food (preferably without gluten and dairy, but we'll take what we can get) and soak in the Texas Hill Country and disconnect the internet and read ... maybe I won't even take the computer. The novel can wait. And I'm going to try and shake the baggage I've loaded onto myself over the years. I'll still probably need more therapy, but I've got to start somewhere. I'll adopt one day if I want a child, not for someone else's idea of the good of mankind.

That was a long paragraph. I usually don't make them so long because reading them makes me glaze over, and now here I am writing one. Sorry.

So I may or may not have a top ten list for you when I come home. And I may or may not have loosened up. We'll see.

God is good.