Wednesday, June 13, 2018

COPING.



The last time I had a drink was August...13th, 2016. I believe.

That's not exact, but we're PRETTY sure on the date Emily was concieved, and don't tell her this -- but I had a wicked strong mango margarita. And then, a few weeks later when I found out I was pregnant, I decided to quit for good. There was no question about it. It's not that I had a "problem," at least not at that point in my life. I had found Jesus -- JK, I had found fitness and was well on my way to making positive changes in my life. Like, I wasn't just watching Netflix, drinking alone and crying over strangers pregnancy announcements anymore. (Ok, I only did that ONCE, but still not exactly a healthy coping mechanism for life feeling out of your control.) I just knew I wasn't going to be the kind of Mom who drank.

I was never good at it to begin with. If you knew me from the ages of 15-22, I'm very sorry. But this isn't about that. And it's not because I grew up with alcoholic parents either. When you're a kid, you only know what you know. I can recognize some negative effects of that in my life now, for sure -- but overall, I don't blame them for my problems much. And I say "MUCH" because I still am learning how not to play victim. Freaking coping...

I think once you've adopted a growth mindset, you just know when it's time to say goodbye to things that aren't serving you anymore. It's like when I decided I wasn't going to purge ever again. I sat on my bathroom floor, heart beating out of my chest, out of breath -- and just KNEW with every fiber of my being that that was the very last time I was going to make myself feel that way. I was DONE. Same with when I stopped taking adderall a few years earlier. I recognized that life wasn't getting any better, I was just repeating the same situations over and over and over. Up, down, up, down. High, low, high, low. And I knew one day that I had to move on and learn how to live without it, unless I wanted to stay stuck.

>> It's CHANGE. That's what it is. And it's hard, but it's also so easy once you can see past it.

I never questioned my decision to stop drinking until pretty recently. I can't believe I don't have a post on postpartum depression, but I guess it's probably because I've been living it, lol. And I feel like I'm always ten steps behind it. It sneaks up and after trying to avoid it for a few weeks, it pulls me under and then it takes another week or so to crawl my way out of. And once I'm out of it, I just want to move ON. I'm not even sure how long you can claim it's "postpartum depression" and not just depression depression -- but something definitely pulled me under recently. And I began to wonder if drinking would help.

It's cliche that stay-at-home Moms closet drink wine in the afternoons, and I can 100% see why now. There comes a certain point in the day, or week when you just lose your shit. Your patience runs right out, and no one wants to be mean. The person I desire to be is not the one I am at 4pm after a day of Mothering. It's probably why it's also a joke that Moms look at pictures of their kids after they go to sleep at night. Because we hated them two hours ago, and now we feel bad, lol.

I hate that I'm not the Mom I thought I'd be. Some days, I am. And my goal is to learn how to replicate those days, but it's probably an impossible goal because it's hard. It's the hardest thing I've ever had to learn; how to be a good Mom. And like anything else, you can't expect to be perfect while learning. (Especially on the job.) It's up and down, and high and low...

And when things are hard, we cope, naturally. And there have been times recently where I've fantasized about what it would be like to have a glass of wine at 4pm. How it would calm me right down and I imagine my patience returning, laughing, numbing those stabbing jabs of frustration and guilt you feel when your baby is losing her shit too, but doesn't understand and can only speak in whines. (WINES/WHINES, LOL.) I just want to be NICE. A "GOOD MOM." And I wonder, if relaxing like that would help during those times.

Maybe it would. But maybe it would also end badly. What if one drink eventually turned into three, and then five. What if I became dependant on it, like I have the two melotonin gummies I take before bed, and couldn't get through the evening without it. What if I started to recognize the negative effects (which would enevitably happen) and felt ashamed so I started hiding it. What if I started drinking in secrecy (except with a baby at my feet who doesn't understand). What if I took it past the point of numbing, and just started totally clocking out of life. Ignoring all the work, and the responsibility that comes with the "learning."

So, long story short. I don't. I can't.

Instead, the other night I had TWO peanut butter and jelly sandwhiches. And writing that out sounds ridiculous. Especially since I am the former bulimic, I've BEEN the person who's drank in secret and I've done much worse things, like snorted adderall off the back of a toilet while I was babysitting.

(If that doesn't shock you, then hey we should be friends.)

So, I would have felt bad, except it wasn't as bad as THAT would be. I coped. We have to.

I've had a lot of bad habits in my life and one by one, I've cut them out. Eating my feelings, and numbing myself for a moment of temporary relief is still something I do. I joked a lot about breastfeeding cravings and how it made me eat in the middle of the night, but really -- it was how I unwinded. It was the only way I knew how to process the day I had just gone through, and could move on. A lot of it was me, trying to take care of me too. Eating treats is often times me, patting myself on the back for making it.

I'm in the middle of a new mindset nutrition course, and we're talking all about habits tied to emotional and stress eating. And maybe that's what's brought on these fantasies about drinking, because I'm finally choosing to recognize that I use food to heal. And if I don't do that, THEN WHAT DO I DO? Be like, fully present in the moment?! Feel the feelings that I don't want to feel?

WHO DOES THAT?

No really, who does that? Is there a place we get to once we've worked through all our shit, that we don't have bad habits? Is there like a breathing technique to this, lol? I have no idea what happens if I work through this, but I'm guessing there will be something else. It's like...an onion. Layers upon layers, of SHIT. And even when you get to the core, you still stink. Because no one's actually perfect. There's actually no such thing as a "good Mom." Or a "perfect day." And I doubt there's anyone out there, living a life that you don't occasionally want to hide in the closet from.

(If that's you, then I actually don't want to be your friend, lol. Kidding. Just kidding, not kidding.)

It's been about a week since the peanut butter and jelly night. And I'd love to say that was unusual for me right now, but it's not. Yesterday, it was a bag of pita chips. The day before it was chocolate chip cookies. 4pm is my struggle right now, but YA KNOW. COULD BE WORSE. Maybe someday I won't emotionally eat, because yes -- there are negative side effects. Mainly that I just don't feel great, or very empowered afterwards. And you need that as a Mom. But for now, one thing at a time.

xx, the Mom who doesn't drink, but defintitely isn't better than the ones who do. #COPEON



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