I was the last person you ever would have thought to convert. I wasn’t just shuttle in my options but outwardly gifted at explaining to others how their choice to have kids verses being single was the best decision ever. I had several long term relationships but garnered this reputation of never passing the two year mark and always bowing out right before. I dated this man who worshipped the very ground I walked on. It was annoying as hell. How it got to last as long as it did is a degrading and embarrassing sorry of believing men will change. No he was never the man I wanted but he was nice and bought me flowers. No one had ever treated me that way and I fell for it. I’m a very naive person. Then it got annoying. The sound of his voice was like scratching mental to my ears. Oh please will you not just shut up? Don’t touch me. What’s wrong with you? I used him and left. Don’t get me wrong. He wasn’t all sunshine and roses. He even cheated on me but I forgave him which was so completely out of my character. When I saw myself as changed because of a man I couldn’t hack it and went out in flying colors. Trust me. It was very dramatic. I’m still kind of proud of myself. If karma is real that one is going to come back like a fucking bitch. When I met Rich I was looking for a sign from the stars. Maybe it was. Maybe it was what I molded it to be. You breathed life into me. You changed what I thought it was.
When Rich and I met we didn’t want kids. That’s what I told him in the first date and it was the most amazing first date. We bonded on a sacrificial kind of way. Our souls touched and became one. There was an understanding. The feeling of never being alone anymore. Never again would I be alone because there was always you. You will always belong to me.
It was quick. Six months then engaged and 6 months later married and then another 6 months later she was conceived. At first we weren’t sure if we wanted to have a child and maybe I talked you into it but you are so much older then me. I knew I couldn’t wait much longer and I feared the regret. When we first saw her in the ultrasound I was still naive. I look back now and see it clicked for you from the beginning. I was so excited and fell into it like the bride that wants the wedding. Poor Cora. As soon as she was born I was resentful. It wasn’t her fault. It’s just I lost a part of myself.
Is it just you or it is me Rich but you are half the man you used to be. I’ve had to get bigger and grow and become a mother. You think it was easy? It wasn’t. It’s like one day waking up and knowing you will rule as the queen of England. I didn’t want it. I wasn’t ready. I had the job. I was 30. I was by all accounts Ready but I wasn’t.
She came and then it was as if I was grieving for the person I once was. A person I would never see again. It was exactly like a death. The c-section hurt and I wanted to stay in the hospital but I was released. Then the blisters came. I still have the scars. I took the pain meds but not enough milk was coming. I couldn’t feed her and be without pain. She kept losing weight and by the third day she lost a quarter of her weight. I wanted to breast feed. As the milk stopped coming out of my breasts I cried whenever I took a shower. It was no more but you didn’t understand. I couldn’t provide. I couldn’t give it to her. I even stopped the pain meds so I could do it. My nipples were bleeding every time I pumped and it was such a hard pain but I didn’t say anything. What could I say? That I felt I failed as a mother and because I’m a woman I failed as a person. I can’t take it back so that guilt is forever with me.
Then Cora started to get sick. It was acid reflux and then strep throat and then ear infections. Back to back and all those antibiotics. Truly, I blamed myself. If only I had breast fed went through my mind.
Cora is happy and healthy today so maybe none of it matters but you say I’ve changed. I’m not the women you married you say. You are disappointed in me and want me to go back but I can’t. I really can’t.
I’m a mom now. I know Disney movie songs. I talk in baby talk to her. I look up parenting methods and spend my days wishing I never had a career to put before her. I have no choice.
And this is what a woman is.
We fight all the time now. You say you don’t understand me and I don’t understand you. I want sex but not the kind you are willing to give. I want to be touched. I want to be kissed softly. I want not to feel insecure. I want to not hate everything I have become because truly I know I am better except for the fact that you don’t see it. And now finally that everyone seems to understand my soulmate doesn’t.
I’m stuck now in this obsession over doing everything for her and doing what hurts me. I want you and I want her and I want it all but now all we do it fight. Damn you Rich. So is it never supposed to be perfect? Is perfect the only thing happiness is? Is happiness an acceptance that this is the best it will ever be? What can I really say? I made these decisions. How can someone possibly do this at 18? I’m 31 and nothing makes sense. I spent 10 years in college. I have 2 masters degrees and I’ve been to 14 countries and nothing makes sense anymore. How long will I be confused?