Tuesday, July 09, 2013

To My Son (letter #1)

Dearest William,

At the writing of this blog "letter" you are 6 weeks old. You are a healthy baby and, according to the pediatrician, your diapers are also "healthy". Believe me, this is a good thing. You are very loved.

I wanted to say a few things to you before I forgot things. I have a feeling this will be the first of many blog "letters" to you.

I have always known I've wanted to be a mother, ever since I was 10 or 11. I know that seems young but I just always knew. I have dreamt of being a mother more than of being a bride/wife. Being married isn't something I gave a lot of thought to until I was in my 20s. At that point, a lot of my friends were getting married and I kind of began to feel left out. I don't know if this is something guys do, but in many cases when women get married (this only applies to the 20 something women I was friends with cause that's where my personal experience lies) they have a tendency to turn their backs on their single friends and stop spending time with them. In my 20s I felt as if I was being pushed away because I was single and my friends were married so I started thinking about marriage and looking for a husband.  I am embarrassed to admit this to you (and anyone else reading this blog). It makes me come across as pathetic and I admit I was pathetic and lonely and sad. I suddenly had no friends and thought the only way they'd become my friends again was if I joined the "married" club.

Needless to say, my 20s were pretty pathetic. I hated my 20s and hated the whole dating game. I lived in Colorado Springs and found it difficult to meet men I had things in common with. As you will discover, I'm not very outdoorsy and hate camping, hiking, backpacking, climbing and fishing. I used to love skiing but can't afford it now. The majority of Coloradoans enjoy doing the things I hate or can't afford so finding someone I have something in common with was difficult.

Finally, my 30s arrived and things improved. I moved to Denver and met a very diverse group of people through Meetin.org. I met some awesome folks and had a lot of fun. I met your pseudo-Aunties Frances, Laura and Carla through Meetin and there are many other men and women I consider friends whom I met through Meetin. I did meet and date 3 men I met at Meetin but they aren't worth mentioning other than to say douchebaggery is alive and well in every area of Denver.

I liked Denver a lot more than Colorado Springs and settled in fairly well. Now, I'm going to say this and it may upset you, but I have always hated living in Colorado. Your grandfather, my dad, moved us to Colorado Springs in 1992 when I was 16 and I never forgave him for that (I know, it's sad that I would hold a grudge like that but I was ridiculously happy in Redlands, California and didn't want to move to Colorado but my feelings were not important at that time). I tried to get back to California but, in hindsight, I took many wrong paths. Looking back I should have gone to college at California Lutheran rather than Pacific Lutheran so I would have been able to stay in California (PLU is in Tacoma, Washington and I had no desire to settle there permanently). Between 1999 and 2010, I sent out numerous applications and resumes to California as well as New York, Washington DC, Hawaii and Chicago, and I even had some interviews (for the Teaching Fellows programs) but did not get hired. While I do like Denver a lot more than Colorado Springs,  I just don't fit in here in Colorado,  hopefully you'll never have to worry about fitting in or "belonging". It's very lonely not fitting in, very lonely feeling like you don't belong. My wish for you is that you never know those feelings.

I stopped looking for out of state jobs when my dad died. He lost his third battle against cancer on July 22, 2010. I'll tell you about him as you get older. He would have spoiled you if he had lived to see you. You would have loved him and his stories. I'm sorry you two never met. Unfortunately, my father would not have liked your daddy (don't tell daddy, it would hurt his feelings). I know my father very well and I know without any doubt that he would not have liked your dad. My dad never got to meet your dad.

Because I want you to have a fun childhood, I plan on going camping and up to the mountains when you and your dad want to go. I want you to love where you live so I won't complain about how much I hate living here, at least not in front of you.

Your father and I are not married and I don't know if we will get married, it's not something we've really talked about. Maybe down the road we will get married. I don't see any difference between being married and cohabitating except that we don't file our taxes together and we don't have the same last name. Even if we were married,  I'd still insist on having separate bank accounts and I'd keep my last name. We're still your parents whether we're married or not. I still love your father and being married won't change that

I cried when you were born. You arrived via c-section and they had a screen that prevented me from actually seeing you. I heard you cry though, as the doctor lifted you out of me. It was the greatest sound I'd ever heard. Daddy brought you over to see me and it was so great meeting you. You were so small and so quiet but we soon learned you had powerful lungs. Your lungs have only gotten stronger over the weeks too.

I'm not really an Attachment style parent but I guess I do do some things that are considered "attachment" parenting. I pick you up and hold you when you cry. I don't want to try the "cry it out" method cause it makes me feel guilty, like I'm ignoring you and I don't want you to think you were ignored. Daddy and I gave you a lot of attention.  Another attachment thing is breastfeeding,  which I didn't realize. You are a breastfed baby. I also want to buy a Moby carrier so I can carry you around as I do things and that is also part of attachment parenting. Now the things that are attachment that I don't do: co-sleeping and breastfeeding past age 2. You slept in our room for several weeks but not in our bed. We've never let you sleep in the bed with us for fear daddy would roll on you in his sleep. Daddy is a deep sleeper and the times you slept in our room, your father never heard you and never realized I had gotten up a few times. He can sleep through anything. Now, we put you in your crib and you're getting comfortable in it. It will be a good space when you get older, you'll have room to play or move around in your crib as you ge older.

I hope that I am a good mother to you. I want to help guide you in learning to love books and finding your creative side. When you're an adult I hope you look back and say you had a good childhood.

I should wrap up this letter. I love you more than anything and you have my heart.

Love, Mommy

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