Category Archives: From the heart

Dysfunction Junction

The phone rings and I wait for it to go to voicemail.

I know it’s her because no one else calls my landline.

I know she’ll try calling again in a few minutes, first my landline, then my cell phone, then my landline again, then my husband’s cell phone.

She doesn’t “get” why her only daughter doesn’t want to speak to her.

It’s been almost 2 years since I moved away from the US. 2 years since I felt free. Free of her, free of my father, free of my brother, free of my dysfuntion.

I grew up in a house of cards.

Always waiting for some shit to fall, and then being blamed for it.

For 20 something years I grew up in a house, a miserable house, a house where the only escape is medication. Xanax, Prozac…

Often times, I say to myself that I’m just being a whiny little bitch. I was never abused, always fed and sheltered, had vacations to Disney world and abroad..  Holidays were celebrated, gifts were in abundance and yet… yet I can only remember the feeling of being an outsider in my own home. Always feeling like something was wrong with me,, because I was different, because I chose to speak up- because I refused to accept the dysfunction. I was always taught that it was my fault. It can’t be that 3 people are wrong, while 1 is right.

I guess I was the dysfunctional one then.

So I kept that locked away for years.

In my psyche it went.. hidden under old books and dreams.

But then my husband joined the picture- and finally I had a witness. A witness to it all. He often stares at me in wonder and says that he doesn’t know how I came out so functional in such a household.

My therapist once told me that she felt bad for the little girl that I was.. always crying out for normalcy. Much smarter than those around her. Not knowing that it’s not her fault.

I can’t be myself with my mother. She doesn’t like the person that I am. A strong willed woman, something she is not. “I don’t like how vocal you are” she said to me this past December while visiting. But mom, this is who I am.. and if after 30 years you can’t accept who I am then it’s now your problem.

The thing is for so many years, I was taught that I shouldn’t be who I was. A girl should be more gentle, less outspoken, less opinionated. Stop acting like a man, you’ll never get married that way…

My mother used to tell me that I should act more like so and so… never just “be yourself, Maya”

My father was hardly ever around. Always working. But it wasnt about the quantity, it was about the quality.

Once I reached a certain age, it’s like he just didn’t give a shit anymore. Threw me into the ocean without a lifeboat. He did his part, I was 18. But no, no he didn’t.

We never shared anything, it was always surface. Not a hug or a kiss. Not a “I’m proud of you”

But I tell myself he just wasnt raised that way.

I was always seeking approval.

approval that I never received.

I still do- To the point where it takes me over. It envelopes me.

And when I do receive some, I don’t believe it.

Here I am, a 30 year old woman and a mother of two, and I am scared to death that my kids will hate me one day.

I look at my beautiful little family, with the most amazing father I could have chosen for my girls and  I fear that they wont answer my calls because just the sound of the ringer will send them into panic attacks.

I can’t be the only one who still harbors so much hate for their childhood so many years later.

I just can’t be the only one.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Living behind the Veil

 

For most of my blogging “career” I’ve been hiding behind a curtain.

Never told anyone I was close with about it.

It was my place to vent- to bitch about everything: my family, my fucked up childhood, my infertility – my world.

The way I see things.

And I hid.

I hid because I can’t tell people things to their faces.

I can’t tell things to my own face as well.

The truth sucks sometimes and blogging has been my therapy for so many years now.

But recently I became a contributing writer for Curvy Girl Guide- an online women’s magazine which I love.

It’s all about loving yourself- empowering yourself and who you are.

And I write.

And my full name is on the site.

And it freaked me out at first.

I never set out to have a name that could be googled.

And traced back.

But here I am, exposed.

And so I linked to a post I wrote on Facebook.

I jumped head first into freezing cold water.

And I’ve received such positive responses from people.. people who I know.

before I started writing for CGG I was thinking of finishing up this blog.

I have been struggling for a while to share.

I’m becoming less and less vocal.

I have struggles.

Just like everyone else.

And I feel like for come reason, I can no longer write about them here.

My secret place is no longer so secret.

It makes me resent it all.

So my new years resolution is this: return to the place when blogging was my diary. 

So what if I’m exposed? I need to be real to myself.

What are your resolutions?

 

– In Advaita Vedanta philosophy, Maya is the limited, purely physical and mental reality in which our everyday consciousness has become entangled. Maya is held to be an illusion, a veiling of the true, unitary Self — the Cosmic Spirit also known as Brahman.

 

Thank You.

I’ve been blogging now for 4.5 years.

I started with a very clear topic: infertility.

Now, well.. life changes.

My blog changed.

I’m a different person today than I was in February of 2007.

Sometimes I lose my way with this blog.

I want to go in a million directions, but then nothing comes out. no words are written.

I am a million people in one day.

I wear many hats.

A few hundred people visit my blog daily.

I still cant believe that.

Who are these people?

Who are you people?

What have I done to deserve an audience?

Some of my very best friends are Blogger Superstars.

I just have this tiny little blog- look ma, no ads!

I’m just a woman, trying her best.

I share.

I cry.

I laugh.

As you can tell, my last blog post was about a month ago.

I had some writers block.

and then…

then I got an email this morning that changed it all.

A woman emailed me with the subject line “Thank You.”

She proceeded to tell me that by writing about my depression and subsequent anti depressant meds- that I inspired her to do the same… and that now she is more present with her kids.

I have been reading your blog for about 18ish months, but reading your post a few months ago was like looking into a mirror. Hearing you say you can now be with your girls and be present…it was like a ray of light came through the clouds. I thought I was the only one who felt like I couldn’t be present with my kids. I love my kids, I always have. I would do anything for them. I love my amazing husband, I always have – but I have not been present…looking back, it must be since since my first child was born, 10.5 years ago. It has only gotten worse since.”

 

“Thank you for not only having the courage to take that step for yourself. But to speak (write) about it, in a very public way, to be an example, so that other moms, like me – thousands of miles away could gather strength and know that we are not alone. So that we know other moms are going through similar feelings, and there is a way to move out of the fog; for the sake of our children, our marriages and ourselves.”

By that point tears where streaming down my face… (while I was on a packed train headed to work mind you.)

“Thank you…more than words can say…”

And you know what I say to this?

Thank YOU.

Thank you for listening and reading, and relating.

Thank YOU for making me feel like I am not alone.

Thank YOU for letting me know that I am not some sort of monster for feeling that way that I have felt.

We’re human.

And this blog has helped me reclaim me.

And all of you have helped me find me.

And held me up when I needed you to.

So to all of you I say- Thank you.

 
 

 

Style

I was reading my dear friend Eden’s blog just now and she wrote a post about personal style. It was part of a Australian blogger topic guide so I decided to steal it because, well.. I’m not australian.

What is my personal style?

Inside and Out?

Hmm.

I love clothes but I don’t spend a lot of money on one piece.

It took me many years to come into my own fashion wise.

I wore only black until I was 23- which made people think  was goth, when really I just thought it was slimming.

I don’t cook every night, but I cook once or twice a week and I put my heart into it.

Most days my kids eat cereal for dinner, and I’m OK with that.

One thing you can’t say about my girls is that they look dishevelled. I make it a point for them to always be clean and not dirty.

I do well and hold my own in the company of men as well as women.

I am VERY self deprecating. I know that if I wasnt, I would be crying about every single hair that I have on my back.

I think that most people either like me or don’t.

I’m definitely funny.

The people who I can’t make laugh, are people who I don’t want to hang out with. ever.

I have a post babies belly that just will not go away. I hide it under baggy shirts and hope to not draw attention to it.

Also- my upper arms are pretty fat so you will never see me in a tank top. like ever. my mom once said that wearing sleeveless made me  look like a boxer when I was 12… so that’s where it began I suppose.

I am an accessories whore.

I don’t like 95% of the gifts people give me.

I am VERY PICKY.

My boobs are huge and are the cause to my shoulder and neck pains… so I am looking into a reduction.

I don’t care if my husband loves them, I have to do it for me.

Plus, I never fancied boobs that you can throw over your shoulders. My boobs, even at 16, were down to my ankles- meanwhile, my mom’s 56-year-old boobs are higher up than mine!!!

Fruit does not belong in a salad.

I can’t eat chicken with the bones it, it makes me feel like a cannibal.

I’m not good with money. I never was. I hope to one day be.

I had a gap between my upper front teeth all of my life. I hated it. Loathed it. Even after I had braces on, and the gap went from huge to tiny, I still hated it. I bonded my teeth before the girls were born. No more gap. My husband said he loved my gap and that I lost “my magic”. I actually like it better this way. But I find it strange that my girls- especially Neve- who has my gap.. wont know that her mommy had one too.. and will think that a gap isnt beautiful (even when it is)! I love her gap so so much.

Channeling Elton John

Often I wonder if removing the gap from my teeth, and lasering off my body hair, straightening my curly hair- not make me authentically me?

If you ever came to my house for dinner, you would think I was  Martha Stewart… house tip-top clean, beautiful and tasty food, nice smelling kids… but it’s only like that for company.

I have never been invited to be a bridesmaid and that kind of makes me sad.

I don’t like wearing shirts that show my cleavage…I’m kind of an old maid when it comes to that…

I do love showing off my legs though…

sometimes I shave my legs before i got to work and while on the train, I realize that I forgot to shave a whole strip on the back.

I always thought that I would be a hairy old grandma, but due to my best friend: laser hair removal, it looks like that’s not gonna happen.

I love facials- so relaxing and refreshing.

I really should get a pedicure once in a while. Havent had one in over a year (gasp)

I love hydrangea

 I think I am getting wiser and coming into my own with age.

What is your personal style?

Dirty 30

My birthday is this Saturday.

I turn 30.

When I turned 29 last year, I was all like “what kind of g-d damn age is 29?”-

And it has been a strange year.

Prolific.

absolutely.

I had to get to my bottom, in order to climb my way up.

It was dark down there.

Filled with self hate, pity and despair.

Filled with ugly voices telling me that I was a horrible mother, daughter, wife.

That I was not who or what I always wanted to be.

Not even close.

I started over last year.

I moved to a different country.

Had to start my life over.

Sometimes, that’s a good thing.

You get to reinvent yourself.

No one knows you.

But you know you.

And as hard as you try to be someone you’re not- your true colors leak out for the world to see- bit by bit.

But I am happy to say that I climbed out of it.

Depression is a bitch.

I never thought that I was going to be a statistic.

I guess I never thought I would be a statistic when I became the mother to premature babies either.

But I did.

And that’s ok too.

I have to forgive myself.

I don’t like to.

But I am better now because of it.

My husband and I fight less.

I have more patience for my two beautiful daughters.

I have more confidence in the person that I am today- mistakes and all.

You know how people always say that they wish they could go back to the age of 20 with the wisdom of  today?

I now get it.

I would never want to go back in time because I really am just getting better with age.

***

I will be turning 30 in Paris, France this year.

I always complain that my husband isn’t a big birthday person at all- doesn’t like to celebrate his own or mine.

So I decided to stop waiting around for someone to surprise me, and booked one ticket to France.

A friend lives there- and I will be staying with her- and another friend is flying from NY to celebrate with me in Paris as well.

My husband will be home watching the girls.

And I  am happy with that.

I’m happy that I am in a place where I have people in my life who love me.

But I am also happy that I am in a place where I am finally loving myself.

 

 

Young Love

Last week my sister in law got married.

She’s 23.

She’s happy.

She’s my husband’s baby sister and it made him weepy.

But no real tears because men dont cry, you know.

The girls were flower girls.

I thought I would have a meltdown putting the dress on N, but thankfully I didnt she didnt.

I got married at 23. I was a baby. You dont think you’re young when you’re 23.

Often I would look back (early on in the marriage) and regret getting married so young. I mean, what do you really know at 23? Who are you at 23? I dont resemble who I was at that age. Not one bit. There was so much living to do before settling down- why did I rush?

But today, I dont really feel like that anymore.

I am so so glad that I am a young mother.

I am glad that I married the right man, even though the timing may have been too early.

I cant imagine my life any other way:

Do you think you got married at a good age? If so why, or why not? (shout out to all my single ladies! )

Cracked Screen

2011 started out like any other year.

Except it didn’t.

My precious iPhone fell to the ground and my screen cracked on my way to work.

Once I got to the train station with my cracked iPhone, I realized something; I had forgotten my purse at home. I mean, who just forgets their purse?

Luckily, I had some money in my coat so that I could buy a train ticket.

Then that same day, I had a snafoo at work.

I emailed a client with some information, and instead of cc’ing my boss- I cc’d the email recipients competition who happens to have the same name as my boss.

Oy.

The week was just sucky all around.

And I started to get sad.

And quiet.

Thursday night, I came home and sat with my husband and girls.

He was playing with them and laughing and their giggles made my heart smile.

But I started to cry.

I cried because I felt empty.

I cried because I didn’t enjoy that moment. I wasnt really there. You know?

I go through the motions every day.

But I’m not there.

Friday morning I woke up and cried.

I ran into my husband’s cousin who is due any day.

She was my due date buddy.

except I don’t have a baby.

I’m not pregnant.

I told my husband I feel sad.

He said everything happens for a reason.

I told him that wasnt what I needed ti hear.

I know all the reasons all too well.

I just needed to feel sad.

I was allowed to feel sad.

At night I have tremendous anxiety.

Only at night-time.

It’s dark and if something happens, I have no control.

As though I have control over things during the day..

On friday morning I decided to go to the doctor.

I told him that I am not a fan of anti depressants for myself.

I like to work through the highs and lows in life.

But I wasnt coming out of my low.

I have been here for years.

Since I was pregnant.

And he wrote me a prescription.

And I was afraid to take it.

I don’t like pills.

But I took it.

And I feel so so…

So…

numb.

I don’t feel anxiety, but I don’t really feel too much of anything else either.

I know there is an adjustment period.

But yesterday I sat with my girls and actually sat.

My mind wasn’t anywhere else.

 And they hugged me, and my entire family was more relaxed.

Relaxed because mommy was relaxed.

Mommy wasn’t trying to clean the house the moment she walked in the door.

Mommy just sat and played.

On the floor.

With the legos.

And then watched a cooking show with them.

And I wasn’t all about counting down the moment until their bedtime.

It’s like someone took the battery out of my ass.

And I like the way it feels.

It will take a few weeks, but hopefully I can feel like myself again.

Just without all the pain.