Becoming a Parent

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I never thought I would be becoming a parent before I turn 24. My mom always had this vision for me. She knocked into my head, school, career, marriage, kids. I am currently close to getting my bachelors, only 9 classes left after I take 2 summer classes. I also want to possibly do volunteer work at a rape crisis center or the center for family justice in my county. Of course, I would have to wait a year or so to do that. Hopefully, I’d be able to do that while getting my Masters in Counseling, though I really have no idea what my life is going to be like at that point.

I am 14 weeks pregnant, and though the changes in my body make me squirm with discomfort on those days I feel insecure, the days I feel excited I see my body as something that protects my unborn child. I can’t wait until I have that ever so popularly known baby belly and can feel the baby kick. I think that will make it “more real” in my head. Not that I don’t think it’s not happening, it’s just there’s no obvious sign I’m pregnant. I’ve been lucky with minimal nausea and no vomiting, and some light cramping that probably is due to the uterus growing. Other than those discomforts and no period, my life hasn’t changed that dramatically.

We did pick out names! Cody and I liked Xander for a boy and Violet for a girl. I can definitely say that I didn’t expect to have a kid so young, mainly because I wanted to be financially secure and in my career beforehand. I am coming to the acceptance that I have to be flexible and rework the plan I had in my head for myself.

I cannot tell you how ridiculously excited I am to actually be a mother. I honestly wasn’t sure when I would feel the excitement but over the past week or so I’ve been having more exciting moments than anxious moments. The thought of seeing my baby and bonding with the baby just makes me smile. I plan to love this kid with all my heart. I only want the best for my kid, and for my kid to have good values, and be a kind person. I know that my kid won’t have all the newest and nicest toys or electronics, but I would hope that the love that Cody and I provide will outweigh the desire for the new things.

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The one thing I am struggling with is giving all the love I can to this child and balancing school. Also if I want to volunteer at a center (it’s only 2 shifts per month) I would have to make sure that Cody, my parents, or a babysitter could look after the child. Is it possible to do it all? Finish a bachelors, start a masters, be a mom, and possibly volunteer, and be a wife? And yes, I caught Cody buying the ring, and also know that he has the ring somewhere hidden in his car.

I know that being a parent means sacrifice and that it means putting your child first. I also know that I want to help people, hence being a counselor and wanting to be a volunteer at a crisis center. I just don’t know how to balance those two things. I also know that I want Cody to not feel like I’m giving the baby all of the attention, I’ve read that some husbands feel neglected when a baby is first in the house because the baby does need a lot of attention. I know Cody and I will work something out.

I guess it’s the perfectionist in me worrying about doing or being it all. I don’t want to let anyone down – Cody, the baby, my parents, or myself- and that’s what I am struggling with.

Any moms want to comment and share how they handled juggling the many demands of life?

XOXO Anna

I’ve Been MIA because…I’m Pregnant

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I haven’t been on posting because I found out I was pregnant a month or so ago. I am 9 weeks and had the first ultrasound this week. Everything looks good. Cody and I are really excited! I just didn’t want to post this until I got the first ultrasound, hence the radio silence on my end. I am not sure how I’m going to tell people. Our families know, and now it’s about telling friends. I am not sure how they will react. I hope positively. I’ve told maybe 3 close friends so far and they have been positive about it. I know, I am 23 and most people will think that’s young. Hell I think it’s young, and this wasn’t planned but we are really excited for this. That is why I haven’t been on, trying to hold this news in until the first ultrasound and everything was cleared by the doctor.

XOXO Anna

Cody’s Mother…

She is still being difficult. Last time I posted about Cody’s mom we were supposed to go over to her house. When we went over, she refused to look at me or acknowledge I spoke. It took at least fifteen minutes of me trying to engage in the conversation for her to look at me, and then would give me a short answer.

We then the next day went to her brother’s surprise party. She acted completely normal in front of me, as if she didn’t have any issue. She put on a good show since Cody’s dad was there and her boyfriend was there. Her boyfriend had told her that she had no reason to be upset with me because I’ve done nothing wrong.

So, for about a week or two weeks, Cody has been trying to get his phone line off his mom’s account. She didn’t do it this past Sunday like she said she would. He messaged her earlier this week, and she didn’t reply. He texted her this morning. The only reason she texted was because he changed the pin on the account when trying to contact verizon to get his line off.

She texted, “Did you change my pin”

He replied, “I tried calling Verizon to see if they can remove my number from your plan because you won’t. I know you’re busy but come on I’m sure you’ve had plenty of time”

She replied, “Cody, stop it! Today is my first day off and I planned on getting to you. You still owe $95 to and I could say the same to you”

He replied, “I wanted this done before this billing period, you said you’d take care of it. It’s almost been a week and I’m still on your plan”

She said, “Come by after work and we’ll take care of it”

He replied, “I hope so this time”

She said, “Knock it off don’t be so rude”

It’s getting to be exhausting dealing with her childish behavior.

 

XOXO Anna

 

Relationship With Mom

Since I got out of treatment, my mom and I have been working on our relationship. I honestly thought this time was different. I am not sure how much I’ve really mentioned my relationship with my mother on this blog, but it has been superficial.

I love my mom. I want my mom. I know, I am 23 but I still need her. I think I’ll always want her, but I don’t know if I’ll ever really have her. I don’t think I’ve ever “really” had her. I know that she cares, I just think she might not be capable of showing it in the ways mothers usually show they care.

In treatment, we had family sessions each week. In those sessions, my mother and I addressed many issues and topics that were keeping our relationship in a tense place. My mother expressed that she mothered the way she thought was best. She thought signing me up for as many activities as possible was showing her care because she never had that growing up. I think she showed her love through money. I don’t want to sound harsh, but I think she didn’t realize the emotional needs of a child after the age of seven, or she just worked too much.

I know these days women work just as much as men, and that is great. I just don’t think my parents anticipated how much their new company would consume them. I want to make clear that I am not blaming my parents in any way. I am just giving my opinion. I know they did the best they could.

I just wonder why my mom can’t be emotional. I know her parents were distant, and she grew up to be independent, strong, and tough. Not everyone has that personality, though, especially not my sister and me. Not to say we don’t have those qualities, but we are sensitive as well. I am closer to my dad than my mom, and my sister is as well. My sister once told me that she doesn’t have a chance at having a relationship with mom, but she saw that I had a chance. She told me to fight for that relationship. Since she told me that I have fought. I have tried my hardest to have a relationship with my mom, but some days I am not sure it’s possible. Other days I think it is. The worst part in all this is the back and forth, the uncertainty, which leaves an emotionally unsafe place to be in.

Last week I went over to my parents to cook with my mom because that was part of the bonding we thought would be good, and it’s good for my recovery to learn how to cook. When I walked through the door in sweat pants and Cody’s t-shirt my mom instantly criticized the way I looked. She then commented on my hair after insulting the outfit. I was very hurt and felt self-conscious but paused. I didn’t yell or explode, instead, I told her I felt like she was projecting and asked what was going on in her life. She admitted to projecting and talked about the stress. That was something we have never done. That was huge progress. It made me hopeful. She also really wanted me to join her gym and go with her twice a week. I’ll admit I was nervous because that’s a commitment. I wasn’t sure whether our new relationship was going to last, but because she was so confident in her decision I started to hope.

Yesterday I talked to my mom about many things and got to the topic of buying books for class. My dad was being strange about it, so she said she would chip in to help me afford it. I was thinking, “wow, my mom really cares and is stepping up her game.” She asks when she can give me the money, and I said that since we had therapy she could give it to me then. She said she couldn’t make therapy (she also canceled last week’s therapy session). I said that was okay. I also asked if she knew if a dietician was in our insurance plan because I need one. She replies, “You don’t need a dietician Anna, please you are fine. You can do this yourself.” I don’t fight her on that, even though I was crushed and hurt. I then continue the conversation of therapy and when she can come. She, in the end, said she could maybe do therapy once a month but said she feels we don’t need it. Meanwhile, before we talked about therapy, she was asking me to come to work today to help out, and when I asked about being paid she said she shouldn’t be paying me because I am family. In the end when she said she thinks we don’t need therapy I told her I wasn’t coming into work and hung up.

After that conversation, I was broken. I felt scared, abandoned and family-less. I’ve already pretty much lost India since she never replies to me, my mom and I were trying to work it out and I feel as if I’ve lost that, and if I lose mom then I, in turn, lose my dad who will be on her side.

I have given my mother many chances to be there emotionally for me, to be closer, to help, and so on. It’s been three years of chances. I really thought this time was going to be different, and maybe it will turn out to be okay…but I feel hopeless right now since she just lost the trust that was slowly being earned.

I am not someone who trusts easily. Sadly, I trusted my mom and that she wanted a relationship (that’s deeper than a kiddie pool). I am not sure if my mom is just scared of having a relationship or what, but I do know that her actions have been quite hurtful and now I feel scared. I am scared to talk to my mom, scared to hang out with her, and scared to try again. I’ll get over it, but I hate feeling scared. I am sure if she knew any of what I was feeling she would apologize, but I don’t know if she would change her mind about therapy or about a dietician. She always “knows” what I “need” and don’t “need.” When I ask for something and she dismisses it, like she has done for as long as I can remember, I doubt myself and knowing what I need. I just want this cycle to end.

If I could have a relationship with my mom it would be both of us communicating honestly, and openly -no secrets. It would be us being able to say what we each need, and both of us accepting those needs. I guess it comes down to being supportive and accepting. I hope one day we can get there…

XOXO Anna

 

The Holidays

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This year was the first year that I celebrated Christmas without my sister. If you’ve read my blog, you will know that my sister ran away a little over a year ago. Of course, we ended up finding her and she is safe, but the relationship with her is still fragile. This Christmas was very hard on my parents and granddad. Apparently my granddad cried himself to sleep a couple nights before Christmas because my sister wasn’t here.

I know I’ve been off this holiday season as well. I’ve definitely been sad because my sister isn’t here and that last christmas eve was when I was starting to really see that Cody had a porn problem.

Even with all that sadness, I think I had a pretty good holiday season over all. Cody and I spent time with my parents and granddad, and we spent time with Cody’s family.

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Family. That word has always been so loaded for me. I am adopted and I haven’t really thought much of it. At least not until my sister ran away. I’ve definitely thought about it over the years at different times, but lately, I’ve felt out of place even more so than I ever have. I guess with India gone it seems so lonely. To me, India and I were always more of a family than India, me, and my parents together. Maybe because we both bonded over being adopted and felt closer to each other because of that.

I was talking with Cody about family, and how I feel so out of place. I guess I’ve noticed it more now that I’ve been in a serious relationship where family dinners and gatherings happen and I will go to them. This year Cody’s grandparents got me a Christmas present, and that means something. This year Cody’s dad and siblings got me a present that only family members get every year -socks. It’s a joke because every year the dad gets the kids socks along with other gifts, so they got me socks and other things. That moment made me feel so part of the family. And lately these days I feel more accepted by Cody’s family, not that they ever made me not feel accepted, but I feel more a part of them.

The moms side of the family had a get together yesterday and everyone on that side was there. They did a family photo thing, and one of the aunts asked me to take the family picture. That made me feel so out of place. I felt like I wasn’t supposed to be there, or that I was just an outsider. Of course, Cody’s mom said I was a part of the family and to not dwell on that. But I guess I was shocked at myself for being sensitive to that. I never expected myself to be sensitive to that, but I was. I think I was sensitive because Cody lately has felt like the closest thing to family that I have. With India gone, and my parents relationship being up and down, Cody has been my constant. He has been stable, and also his dad has been stable. So I guess I felt thrown when I was taking the family photo. I mean, Cody’s moms boyfriend was in the picture, and they aren’t married. I know that the boyfriend has been her boyfriend since Cody’s parents divorce, but I just felt so…rejected maybe?

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But besides that, the holidays have been nice. I know that New Years is coming up and that means more family get togethers and get togethers with friends, so I will prepare myself for any emotional stuff that might be brought up. I think I also want to maybe address my adoption in therapy more. I honestly haven’t thought about the fact that I am adopted until a couple weeks ago, and I actually sat down to think about how adoption has affected my life. It’s not been a bad thing at all. It’s just being adopted has always made me have a different perspective on family. Family isn’t made from blood but by people that you love.

XOXO Anna

Finals are Over! Education Still On the Brain…

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I am so happy that finals are over! No more stress, finally. Cody and I are also doing really well since last wednesday when we had a therapy session together. We were having issues with initiation of intimacy, and we solved it with if the candle is lit one of us is in the mood and open to the other person initiating. It’s solved a lot of our arguments.

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Even though finals just happened, I am thinking about next semester already. I am even thinking further than next semester. I am really excited about school and my education, and yeah I am a nerd. I fully admit it and am proud. For the longest time I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do with psychology. I love psychology, law, and law enforcement. So when talking to one of my professors earlier this semester about his study on jurors and then my mom suggesting watching Bull, I realized there was a whole field in psychology I didn’t know about. Trial science. I know it’s nothing like the show Bull, but from what my professor and articles online have explained, it seems very interesting. Something that I might want to pursue or look further into.

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Treatment has been going well, and I have 3 weeks left before I discharge, which is really great. Center for Discovery definitely is an amazing treatment center for eating disorders. Much better than Renfrew in my experience. Tonight is family night, and Cody and my parents are coming. Also, my relationship with my mom has improved ten fold because of the family sessions we’ve been having. It’s nice, especially since Christmas is coming up.

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Speaking of Christmas, I got presents for my parents and Cody. I don’t have any for his family, and neither does he, so later this week we have to go do that. Christmas is a great time of year but also extremely stressful the week of. So many people are rushing around shopping, driving recklessly, and so set on getting everything on their list. I know that I haven’t gotten everything I wished I could have gotten for everyone but I am doing my best not to stress about it. In reality Christmas should be about spending time with those you love more than the gifts. I know that I got Cody things he wanted, and I got my mom something she wanted, and got my dad something that I personally think he would like, but I didn’t shower them in a million gifts. It will just be nice to have Christmas morning with all of them and have a nice family breakfast.

I hope everyone is enjoying the holiday season!

XOXO Anna

 

Couples Therapy

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Cody and I talked a lot yesterday before couples therapy. At work I installed a web browser blocker and blocked a lot of porn sites and words that could bring up porn, and the funny thing is that when one searches a term that is blocked it redirects to another page, that you can set…so I set it to redirect to the picture of Cody and I in the beginning of our relationship, we were kissing in a coffee shop, and it’s really a sweet picture. So I feel a bit better about Cody going to work now, though I still have anxiety.

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We switched phones at the beginning of this week since it was his phone and the work computer he used for his addiction. I haven’t yet found something to block sites and words for his phone, so that has been a bummer for both of us. I know Cody wants his phone back but I need to have a certain level of trust gained back before I give him his phone, which he used to feed his addiction.

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In therapy we made a lot of progress. We talked about a lot of things, like the things we’ve progressed on and the things that I personally am still trying to work to get over. My goal is to obviously be able to forgive Cody and look back at the past without feeling pain. I’m not there yet but I’m working on it. I also am working on trying to understand how Cody could have let us sign a year lease together, knowing that if I found out about his addiction there was a possibility of me leaving. Cody and I have talked about it, and we talked in therapy about it, and the therapist helped me understand a bit more.

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Also surprise! My sister is back in town and no one told me. Yesterday my mom texted me that she was arriving late last night and I was completely thrown off guard. If you’ve read my blog you will know that things have been tense with my sister. If not,this can give you an idea of what happened. So I am not only trying to stay strong and keep Cody going in recovery, but now I have to make sure I am there enough for my sister while she is here too. I’m a bit stressed to say the least…

XOXO Anna