Friday, December 9, 2011

On Regrets

Have you ever been on YouTube, watching shows or clips or whatever, and you end up somewhere that confuses you? I do rather often; I'll start off on a favorite music video or something and end up watching someone lance an abscess on a cow. A rather far-fetched example, but it has happened, and in a way to me it reminds me of the seven steps to Kevin Bacon - one way or another if you're online you'll end up someplace weird if you hang out long enough.

The other day I ended up watching videos of happy couples announcing their pregnancies to family members, who more often than not ended the piece jumping for joy, screaming, and generally being super-excited. After a few, I was in tears. It was hard to watch those things, because while I felt an intense sense of appreciation for the situation, I was honestly really, really jealous. Watching their families be so, so happy for them made me long for the same reaction, and unfortunately, it's something that will never happen.

When we found out we were pregnant, regardless of the time in question, we weren't in a good place. With G we were living with six other people in a three bedroom, two bathroom house that was a bedroom short and had a dysfunctional couple sleeping on the living room floor. I was unemployed and Hubby was barely making minimum wage, working part-time at a grocery store. We had no health insurance, no savings, no place of our own and absolutely nothing to show for ourselves - in fact, we were both still in college. With A, we were in a small, leaking one bedroom apartment that we soon found out was to be torn down. We weren't much better off financially; we were both working part-time and I had to leave my job sooner than anticipated because of problems with the nerves in my right leg. Naturally, neither of our jobs offered any benefits and we were on every form of assistance we could qualify for. They weren't good situations in the least.

My mother was probably the least supportive. G was her first grandchild and A her second (fitting, as I'm her only child), but there was no celebration to be had for us. She portrayed herself as a betrayed woman whose child had let her down, and it's a feeling she's put me through more than once - something I won't forget. For Hubby's parents, G was their fourth biological grandchild, and while they were happy, they understandably weren't overjoyed (never mind the fact that we're some 1600 miles away). The fact of the matter remains that no matter what situation we're in, no matter where we live or how we're doing, no matter what we say or do, the kinds of reactions in those videos aren't something we'll ever experience.

I should be happy, by all means, that at least I have a mother to share these things with even if she isn't necessarily happy, and in laws who are supportive and helpful. I should be thankful for a lot of things but sometimes it's hard to remember that, and instead I end up observing the good fortunes of other people in areas where I can't possibly affect my life, and wonder where I went wrong.

It's nothing against anybody, when it comes right down to it; I can't possibly expect people to react to something like that in ways they aren't apt to. I can't force anybody to be more emotional about a situation or a comment or whatnot than they're going to be naturally. It is what it is.

But sometimes that's hard to remember.

Meanwhile, A has started diving into his sleep problems again. Today he woke up at 1:30 AM; I coerced him into staying in bed until about 2 AM but he was being so noisy and violent toward me (lots of scratching and yelling) that I wasn't really willing to stay in bed with him. I didn't want him to wake up G and Hubby. So out we came to the living room, and he has since dumped out two boxes of blocks, nearly woken up Hubby and G again, demanded chocolate milk, and generally tried to suck up to me. It's now nearly 4 AM. He went to bed around 9 PM, when I also passed out, so he's functioning on about 4 1/2 hours of sleep and still managing to be rather chipper. Unlike him, I'm actually in a pretty grouchy mood right now.

I can't explain his sleep disturbances. They aren't night terrors or even nightmares, as there's no waking up screaming - he just wakes up out of a dead sleep and is incredibly violent toward me until I give in. He tends to claw my face and arms, and today he actually drew blood for the first time. Usually the only other time I see this kind of reaction is right before naptime, when we're laying in bed and I'm trying to get him to actually calm down and get ready for sleep, at which point the scratching starts again. I began changing my reaction, and have been trying NOT to react to his scratching, with the positive effect being that he scratches me less and doesn't fight as long every time. He doesn't scratch Hubby at all. I don't understand why, although I can't complain; obviously I'd rather he not scratch anybody, but if he's going to scratch someone I think it's better that it's me. All the same, it's still 4 AM, I've still been up for 2 1/2 hours, and that is honestly long enough in my book.

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