Maybe baby

Today, I finally sat down and composed my grievance document for work. It has made me feel sick with anxiety and taken me back to a very stressful and unhappy time. I’ve been avoiding it. I’ve attempted it several times and parked it as my anxiety levels went through the roof. In all honesty, I don’t want to go back to that work place. My GP won’t sanction it anyway.

I could ask for a transfer to a different location but if I’m totally honest, all I want to do is stay home and have babies. I’ve worked at my career since I graduated from university and now I want to be a Mum. More specifically a stay at home Mum. I don’t see the point in having children and having a child minder raise them. That’s only my opinion and I respect other people’s choices and views that are different to mine.

I know babies are expensive and being financially secure would be ideal but we don’t live in an ideal world. Fact is, I’m forty. Time is not on my side. My biological click is ticking, it has been ticking for a while and it is getting louder.

I like being at home. I feel safe at home, not that I feel unsafe when I’m out, but my house is my space. I’m in control when I’m home. I’m not really big into nights out – the hangovers are just not worth it. I’m ready to put my needs to one side and prioritise those of my child. It won’t be a huge wrench to put work aside to have a baby. I’m content.

I’ve also finally met a man that I want to have children with. He has a child from a previous relationship so I know already that he’s a good Dad. Its still fairly early days for our relationship and we have talked about having a child together. The sooner the better as far as I’m concerned!

There are some health issues to get under control, my blood pressure medication is necessary but not compatible with pregnancy. I’d also like to be off my medication for anxiety and depression too. I’m not quite there yet. They are definitely my security net and I’m not ready to relinquish that right now. I can’t think of a better reason to keep focused on my recovery than having a baby.

Reasons to be cheerful/ grateful/ positive

So my anxiety has sucker punched me in the gut today….its been a while. I know it will pass, so to distract myself I’m going to think about all the positive things in my life. Here goes:

1. My family. My family are the best. They know me better than I know myself and ALWAYS have my back. They are supportive and wise. I am so lucky to still have both of my parents. They are my go to people. They always give me wise counsel.

2. My boyfriend. I am so lucky and thankful that he is in my life. I’ve been happier these last eight months despite everything and that’s all down to him. He really understands me and knows how I’m feeling instinctively. He is also a huge support.

3. My friends. I have the most fantastic loyal and supportive friends. We may not live close to each other and we’re at different phases on our lives but I consider myself incredibly lucky that I can call, text or message my friends for a chat/ support/ honesty/ a good laugh and to take the piss out of me depending what I need at the time or they need from me.

4. My cat. He makes me laugh, is my shadow and looks at me sometimes like I’m bananas but I love him and would not be without him. Its been good for me to have him to look after and he takes care of me too. He’s my boy and I’m his human.

5. This blog. Blogging has really helped me. I’m still very new to it but I enjoy it. It’s a welcome distraction. I’ve always loved writing and have kept a journal for years. Sassy has given me an alter ego to express my thoughts without feeling exposed. It’s also been a great outlet for me to channel my thoughts on life, my mental health and anything else that comes to my mind.

6. Autumn. My favourite season of the year. Much as I love summer and the sunshine, by far and away my favourite time of year is autumn. Being able to wrap up in cosy jumpers, cuddle up under a blanket watching movies, light my autumnal candles (Yankee Candle scents Golden Chestnut, Spiced Orange and Soft Blanket are my current favourites.) I’m an Autumn baby so its in my nature. I just love being cosy!

7. Walking through crunchy leaves on a crisp day. Very much linked to my love of autumn. Pulling on a pair of boots, scarf and heading out for a walk is one of my favourite things to be able to do. I love the crunchy sound and all the colours of the season. All while getting fresh air, stretching my legs and clearing my head.

8. Cooking/ baking. I love getting into the kitchen and cooking or baking. I love making old favourites, batch cooking or baking scones, banana bread, muffins…whatever the mood takes me. I find it very therapeutic. This is definitely soup weather and I love it! Time to get my cook on!!

9. Being independent. I’m lucky that I’m very comfortable in my own company. I’m also well able to give new things a go. Whether that is building a flat pack bookcase, varnishing a pine blanket box or changing a light bulb. I’ll get on with it. I love the sense of satisfaction achieved when I succeed or accomplish a task. This sister is doing it for herself!

Love is all you need

Love. Just four letters but together they make a word that is massively important. Love is amazing and life changing. Love makes you smile, makes your heart sing and makes you feel like you are walking on air.

You don’t get to my age without having experienced the highs of first love and the lows of having had your heart broken. It’s not all hearts, flowers, sunshine and rainbows but real love is amazing. As much as my cat has been my constant companion and shadow since he adopted me and through my recent physical and mental health challenges, my boyfriend has been my rock.

He is so supportive. He has my back but will also give me a metaphorical kick up the bum when I need it. I’m incredibly lucky. We just had an instant connection that had deepened as our relationship has progressed. He gets me and for the first time, I feel I can be completely myself.

Long live love ❤️

Crossroads

I feel like I’m at a real crossroads. I’m imminently about to turn 40. I think I’m still in denial about that….I don’t feel 40. I don’t even know what being 40 should feel like! In my head, I’m still 21. I think that 40 is a really grown up age, I’m nowhere near a grown up….I’m still making it up, hoping I get it right and trying to get my s**t together! Grown ups are together!!

I digress. There are two key things that are bothering me and causing me to feel unsure what direction to go in. The first is my desire to be a mother. I can hear that biological clock of mine ticking and its getting louder and louder all the time. I’m terrified that I’ve left it too late. I’m also very aware that if I do conceive, because of my age the pregnancy will be much higher risk and there are increased risks of birth defects. My relationship with my boyfriend is also fairly new…we’ve been together 7 months. I know with every fibre of my being that he is my soulmate and the man I want to be the father of our child. (Much as I’d love to have 2 children, I won’t push my luck!)

The other is work. Not the whole unresolved issues (see my previous post: Decision deadline approaches…) but what do I want to do for the rest of my working life? I’d love to be able to work from home but I’m not in a place financially to do that right now. Realistically, I need to find a sideline that I can do in my spare time whilst continuing to work full time. I’d love to go down the counselling route, so would need to save to go back into education to achieve that. I’m also fortunate enough to be on a permanent contract, do I really want to give that up?

This is also where the things that are playing on my mind converge. If my dream of having a child is to be realised, I’ll need to do that sooner rather than later. Of course that’s a decision to be made jointly with my boyfriend. There is also a huge financial element to having children, small people need lots of stuff!! All flippancy aside, having children means that they come first and their needs need to be met emotionally, physically and financially. Raising a child needs financial stability….not realistic if I’m planning on going back to education.

So here I am. At a real crossroads with no idea which way to go?

Looking back to move forward

I’ve kept a diary for years, my memory isn’t great so it’s nice to have a record of my life. I also find it therapeutic. Its nice to have somewhere to note my thoughts, fears, worries, hopes and successes.

I know that living in the past is not healthy. I am happy in the present (work situation and anxiety aside.) Today I was looking at my diaries from 2015 and 2016. I was lax at completing my diary daily in 2015 but from my entries such as they were in 2015 and in 2016, it was very clear that I was not happy. I was frustrated, depressed and settling for way less than I should have.

My ex partner struggled with his mental health and this is in no way a dig at him. It is about me reflecting on the impact of his mental health on me and my own mental health. I was full of questions in 2016. Mostly I was questioning whether I was being unreasonable? Was I expecting too much? Were my ex partner’s expectations of me reasonable? We were operating on different hours whilst living in the same house. It was hard. I was working, he wasn’t. Today, I could see from looking back that at that time I was questioning whether to continue in the relationship.

It took me a further 18 months before I ended the relationship. It was the best decision. Yes, it was awful at the time. Ending a relationship is the hardest thing I have ever done. I knew that it would hurt my ex, but I knew I had to do it. I’d had enough. I wasn’t happy, he wasn’t happy and staying together wouldn’t have been right for either of us.

Facing being single in my late 30’s was daunting. I thought that my ex partner was the man that I would marry and would be the father of my children. Instead, I was single and childless.

It’s funny but in 2017, I’d actually thought about us trying for a baby. There was some uncertainty at work so financially it could’ve been a disaster if I got pregnant and even made redundant. I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Thankfully, I wasn’t made redundant and it became clear that having a baby together would not have been a good idea.

Fast forward to today. I’m still childless but I’m in a relationship with an amazing man. Now I know why none of my previous relationships worked out. I also know that those relationships taught me what I needed to know about myself, to know what I need from a relationship. I know that I have found my soulmate. We have talked about having a baby and I know he will be a brilliant father to our child, when the time is right.