what I write about
she has fallen and now she is awake
The closer I get to starting back at work, the more anxious I get and the angrier I get.
I’m angry at everyone from my father to friends to Wolfman’s coworkers because all of them presume that he will be bored with staying at home. Bored with our child. With the undercurrent that I wouldn’t be, couldn’t be, shouldn’t be. In spite of what he says, in spite of what we say. We just don’t know or understand. We couldn’t possibly be relying on intimate knowledge of ourselves – gender roles win every time dontchaknow? Because history has obviously shown one of us craves intellectual stimulation and work and it wasn’t Wolfman, in spite of what everyone keeps telling me
I’m angry at Wolfman for not taking this seriously enough. For not magically fixing my anxiety. For staying up drinking and gaming til 3am and leaving the freezer door open last night. For not waking when our daughter stirs so even if I weren’t feeding to sleep most of the time I’d still have to wake up, then wake him up. For not having done his wisdom teeth before now. For acting like certain chores and expectations I have are my own unique and crazy perversions.
I’m angry at myself for being so anxious. For applying for another job that’s probably going to be a better paid version than my current one even though I want to change paths but the lure of the familiar and more pay is just too much. For not being able to explain my anxiety in a way that makes Wolfman understand what I need him to do.
I’m angry at the world because I get paid shit in spite of my education because I am in a feminised field. For telling me over and over and over that I’m too demanding or too much of a perfectionist or a clean freak or a middle-class obnoxious ‘mommy’ who cares too much about appearances or mean simply because I have standards. Because it tells men that not doing a job, or doing a half-arsed job, or procrastinating until someone else does it, is all okay as long as it’s a woman’s job they’re fucking up. For telling me over and over that his decisions are all logical and normal and okay and personal but mine are suspect and probably because of all that shit I read and I don’t I know that it’s all my fault. And for telling me that I should just be grateful he does anything.
I’m angry at my douchebag brother-in-law for congratulating me on the weight BunBun has lost (hint: none, she just got taller and ‘you lost weight’ is not a universal compliment). I’m angry at Maman for explaining how I can’t expect higher social consciousness from someone ‘so smart’. For denigrating my degree. For doubting my devotion to BunBun.
I’m angry at the constant fucking questions about ‘still’ feeding and ‘still’ waking at night and when I’ll wean, when I’ll put her in her own room, when I’ll switch the carseat around, when I’ll give her cow milk, when I’ll do cry-it-out, when I’ll leave her overnight, when I’ll move back, when I’ll have another baby.
I’m angry a lot right now.
Chances are, some of you have suffered through a hangover. Christ knows I have. What I’m suffering right now is a bullshit hangover – not through over-indulgence of alcohol, but over-exposure to bullshit.
Quick history lesson time! I had three serious partners before Wolfman and all three have had some effect on my current psyche. Mofo being the most positive in effect (since, y’know, we’re still friends with him and The Artist, one assumes the breakup can’t have been all bad and the relationship certainly must have been okay) but the first two dealt me some lasting damage. One obviously so thanks to raping me, but my first boyfriend probably did the most insidious of damage, the shit that flies under the radar til it smacks me in the face and I fall apart. It’s mostly his bullshit that I still have thing fucking hangover from.
So, this post goes out to Aza, with all his fucking bullshit. Read more of this post
BunBun is five and a half months. At the point where she grabs food out of your hand, but doesn’t eat, simply slobbers. So while I was cooking dinner I have her a thick slice from the pear I was chopping for salad. I continued making dinner, she slobbered on the pear, threw her cup and spoon, and gabbled away. All was well. I turned to put a few things back in the fridge when I heard her choke.
You know, that garbled attempt to breathe. Almost a sob, or a heave. I dropped what was in my hand and spun. She was in the highchair and straining, bright red and no sound. Tears. I pulled her forward and searched her mouth. Nothing. She threw herself back and forth and I yelled for Wolfman. He came running as I drove my fingers into her throat. I found the soggy, tiny piece of pear. I could touch it. I couldn’t hook it, couldn’t grab it.
I started to swear, I tried to get her out of the chair but I couldn’t. The motion jerked her upwards and I tried again to get the pear. I couldn’t reach it at all now. I yelled at Wolfman to get her out of the chair. I tilted her forward.
She whooped an inward breath. Then screamed. And screamed again. And whooped once more. Then coughed. I held my breath, visions of aspiration pneumonia. She screamed and cried and then sniffled, her face buried in my neck.
I began to cry.
Wolfman held us and asked if we were okay. I sobbed and BunBun began to cry again then as well. He rescued the apple and pear sauce still bubbling away, and picked up the teatowel on the floor. I jiggled BunBun as I checked the pizza. Nothing was burnt, nothing was even close to cooked yet. I finished dressing the salad and waiting for the pizza to finish. We ate our dinner and BunBun had hers. There’s not a single thing wrong now.
Except the aftershocks of terror and the guilt. I wasn’t watching her close enough. She’s too young for solids. The chair is antique and refurbished with no bar to hold her in. There’s no harness, just a mess of ties keep her from sliding under and out. I hurt her throat, digging for the pear. My fingernails are too long.
My fingers were too short.
Yes I’ve learnt my lesson. No more slobbery bits of fruit. I’m getting a proper harness and/or fixing the chair. I’m updating my first aid as soon as I can because I don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t learnt the fishing around as the first step.