Melancholy and Mother's Day

I've been feeling a bit melancholy the last few days. It's the kind of thing where there isn't a logical explanation for it, and I've been having a lot of really great experiences too so there's not an obvious external cause. I think it's just a combination of the usual monthly hormonal fluctuations, the stresses of adjusting to a new job, and the fact that I have the hardest time making sleep a priority for myself (that's a constant theme here, isn't it?). 

First of all, the new job is great. I felt like taking my last job didn't make a lot of sense logically, but it felt right. This job made much more sense for me logically, but I wasn't feeling a strong prompting about it like I did last time. However, since being in my new position for the last two weeks I have really come to see that this is a great job for me in many ways, and I have also seen the ways in which my previous job and other experiences have prepared me for it. The first little while of learning a new job is really difficult, no matter how great the work environment and the people are. There are so many processes and things to remember and so many people to meet. I'm a creature of habit and routine so I know it's going to take a while for my system to calm down and not feel so freaked out all the time by everything that is new. 

Second of all, I've realized that spring is always going to be an emotionally difficult time for me. I'm not totally sure why that is, exactly. My birthday is the first week of May, usually followed closely by Mother's Day. May is the last month of school and a time of big transitions for everyone. During my marriage we were both in school for much of that time, and spring was always a time of change, plus Mr. Fob and I started dating in May. Yesterday I had a busy day--in the morning I went to a brunch sponsored by the Activity Day girls, then in the afternoon there was a bridal shower for my cousin, and then in the evening I attended the banquet for the Whitney Awards. All of those things were a lot of fun and it was a great day; at the same time, the fun is always tinged with a bit of sadness. I miss having Saturdays be family time, I miss having someone to go to events with me, and while I sincerely appreciate S-Boogie's Mother's Day gratitude that I work hard to support our family, I miss my old life when I didn't have to work and I had more time to dedicate to my family. 

At the same time, I recognize that I can't ever go back to that life again. My life has changed and I have to keep moving forward and working with what I've got; all of us do. On Friday I went and saw The Great Gatsby; it was a mediocre movie at best, but the themes have really stuck with me. Gatsby has a troubled relationship with the nature of time. On the one hand, he thinks that if he does the right things he can just pick up his relationship with Daisy right where they left off five years previously, never imagining that she has changed (or that he has for that matter). He wants a relationship with the Daisy he knew five years ago, but she doesn't exist anymore. On the other hand, he wants other aspects of his past to disappear and for people to know him only in the present and to avoiding looking too closely at who he was in the past and how he got to the point where he is today. He wants Daisy from the past to have a relationship with Gatsby from the present/future, but that just isn't possible.

This time of year is hard because it is so easy for past, present, and future possibilities to get all tangled up. Many women I know struggle with Mother's Day because of difficulties they have in their relationships with their own mothers, their own children, their expectations of themselves, and others' expectations for them. It's easy to get wrapped up in what we wish we had done, or what we think others should have done, or what we think the past means, or what we want the future to be. I know I have the tendency sometimes in my parenting to worry so much about the future for my kids that I let those anxieties get in the way of what I am doing with them right now. I know I also sometimes worry so much about the injustices of my past, both those that were my fault and those that weren't, that it can be hard to be fully present in my life right now. I'm trying to work on overcoming both of these flaws. I'm grateful that I know so many good people who set an example for me--to end I'm going to link to three powerful blog posts that have really touched my heart the last few days (since they say things much better than I ever do):

Say What You Need to Say by Josh Weed
My Inner Voice by Michelle L.
When we both disappoint each other, and try to love anyway by Lisa

Comments

Katya said…
Thanks for those links. I especially liked the Segullah one.
The Weed said…
Just saw that you posted--I love reading your thoughts.

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