Ever look back on your life and feel like you are watching a movie? The plot & characters all seem so familiar, you may even have certain parts memorized line by line…yet you are a spectator. Removed and distanced from the actual events.
That is my experience when I look back on my early years of motherhood. I can tell of specific events, and create a vivid picture of what life was like, yet it always feels as if I am telling someone elses’ story, instead of my own.
Most often, people ask how I managed to complete high school, and continue on through college with a young child (and later, children) in tow. My answer: It was like sleepwalking. Literally. Anyone with young children knows that it is nearly impossible to complete a simple phone conversation-let alone write a research paper- when juggling the day-to-day tasks of parenting. My only option was to burn the midnight oil, and make the most of naptimes. While the baby slept, I worked. I read textbooks into the wee hours of the morning, and raced my way through papers during his naptime. I caught up on sleep in between classes, and became an avid coffee drinker. I look back on those years and remember night after night of lonely solitude in the living room. Just me, my homework, the humming of the fridge and the sporadic *click-clack-clackty-clack* of the keyboard. It seems like a dream. And in many aspects, it was. Even now, I find myself most productive in the late hours of the day, long after the bedtime stories have been read, and curtains drawn. Even now, I look back on the accomplishments of the past fourteen years and wonder if I am dreaming…
Seems like everywhere you look these days there is news of another Teen Mom, thanks in part to MTV’s popular shows Teen Mom and 16 & Pregnant. Of course, anyone following mainstream media in the last decade knows that the current pre-occupation with pregnant and parenting teens is nothing new…every few years or so, some news story pops up that brings up the discussion once again (think: Jamie-Lynn Spears, Bristol Palin, etc…) Fact is, teen moms are easy targets in the mommy wars. What could be worse than a young (presumably single) teenager struggling with the newfound responsibility of parenthood? Step aside, working moms & formula feeders…a new bottom-feeder has emerged— complete with raging hormones, maturity issues, and an unquenchable thirst for partying, plastic surgery, and relationship drama. Or so the tabloids would have you believe. This blog is my attempt to tell another story. A story of unexpected challenges, and the beautiful outcomes that came as a result of some very hard decisions. They say that every cloud has a silver lining. This is the story of my silver lining: his name, is Elijah.