Is sugar so nice, really? It increases mucous and yeast production, goes straight to your ass/hips/thighs and rots your teeth. Queen Elizabeth I was so proud of her wealth, she showed it off by eating a lot of sugar to blacken her teeth. I haven’t been eating any but a TBSP of brown sugar with my oatmeal for a few weeks, and the difference is pretty noticeable. Our bodies crave carbs and sugars because they still think we work outside for hours, doing backbreaking hard labor to produce the things we ‘need’ to survive. But we don’t. So why are we still eating it like mad? Should we not be training ourselves to fit into this new evolutionary track we’ve laid for ourselves?
Anyway, that’s not what this is about. It’s about the heaviness of my job ahead that has just now hit me: raising a woman. A woman who knows what she wants, loves herself wholly and without vanity and who goes after her dreams without too much hemming and hawing (a little hemming and hawing is okay). I’m not that woman. That doesn’t mean my parents failed or anything just that, somewhere along the way, I really lost interest in getting to know myself. My whole teen/young adult life was fraught with trying to be something for somebody else, because the reality of me is just too huge to deal with. Living this way has not only made me incredibly unhappy, but everyone who’s unfortunate enough to cross my path as well. Because I was obviously missing being myself. Of course now, weeks away from 29, baby and husband in my orbit, I’ve realized I’m not thirty yet. It’s like Scrooge waking up on Christmas morning, realizing there is still time. More on that in another entry, though.
The gravity of that realization is that I really don’t want that to happen to my daughter. I have been writing in a journal for her — I started it when I first became pregnant. I want her to know her mother as she was, not just how she seems. That is to say, when the utilitarian nature of living comes around (and it will) I want her to see that the extreme highs and lows, thrills and passions, desperations and exultations, etc. are worth looking forward to, living through and filing away. Not worth dwelling on or falling into the futile pursuit of extending a moment. Because we live in moments only, it is up to us to use them wisely and piece them together in a productive way.
I haven’t really done that. And now I find I don’t know why. It is my own mystery, one I’ll obviously be attempting to solve for the rest of my life. As for my daughter, well, I want her to use me as her example of How Not to Proceed. This is not an ‘I wish I knew then what I know now’ cry out, or anything. I have no regrets because I at least know that’s the way to move ahead. Regrets tie you down. It is, rather, a pathetic epiphany that came with the last great growing pain of my young life. Also, I have decided that being a woman is the best and worst thing that can happen to a person. An ex used to say to me, ‘people expect more from you’ when I behaved in whatever way I felt like. And he was right, I suppose — my rallying response being, ‘WHY!?’ Leave me alone, I thought, I do what I want. Because just doing whatever I wanted, pursuing pleasure, was the antithesis of what I really am.
Rowan is only 4 months old, so some people might say I’m jumping the gun with this anxiety. But I gots anxiety issues, okay? I always have. She may be my exact opposite, this little girl, and that’s okay. I would probably worry about her a lot more if she turns out to be just like me. Poor thing. In the end, I want her to love to learn, to dream and also to find the strength to turn her dreams into reality. Not just to simply watch them wander by with a complacent smirk or to jump over to something new when finishing seems too involved. I want all these things for her and more…
What have I gotten myself into?