May 16, 2012
My office is a mess. My bookshelves have been tampered. There are puzzle pieces everywhere. I have the baby’s jumper and swing crowding my desk. And I’m surrounded by paperwork, half-eaten food and an empty protein shake carton. I feel disorganized. After all, I always felt that my external world reflected my internal world. The more controlled my environment is, the more controlled I am feeling.
Since becoming a mom, all that logic has been thrown to the wayside. While I can plan to workout at 6am, 95% of the time, I can’t because I am so sleep deprived from waking throughout the night for the baby. More recently, Christian was set to walk down the aisle in my friend, Melody’s wedding. At the very last minute, after a tantrum and plea for cooperation, I gave the ring to someone else to walk down and give when they exchanged vows.
Even updating this site every Monday is ideal – except, when the kids finally sleep by 9pm, I am lucky if I can keep my eyes open after I finish emails, dishes and laundry.
Being a mother disrupts your life. They disrupt you when they are fighting, when they are hungry, or when they need you to wipe their butt after going #2 (there! I said it). But they also disrupt your life when they kiss you when you’re sleeping, show you a picture they drew or anxiously hug you when you are swimming. When people say they don’t remember their life without their children, I think it’s true to a certain extent…because honestly, I do remember.
When I attended my friend, Shelly’s baby shower and Melody’s wedding these past couple weekends, it reminded me of when our friendships were in full bloom. Shelly and I met when we shared a Women’s Studies course in college. She first introduced me to the world of clubbing and was my confidant during a lot of my trials with school and boyfriends. Melody and I met when I first moved to San Francisco and we were working at the same gym as fitness counselors. We were new to the city and enjoyed meeting friends, going out and traveling together. My friendships with both were strong at equal levels during different points in my life. In both cases, our friendship had a five year stagnant period where we didn’t talk or communicate. In both situations, I halted the friendship because I don’t deal with false promises or flaky friendships very well.
Not that I’m a perfect friend either. I’m fully aware of my flaws. I know I have high expectations and a somewhat unwelcoming command when I want something done. I know I’m not the person you call for sympathy or ‘just-to-talk-without-wanting-advice’ in return. If you workout with me, I will push you. If you confide in me, I will force you to examine your thoughts. And if you make a date, a promise or a goal, I will always expect you to deliver.
When I celebrated the special moments of Shelly and Melody, it was hilarious. I expected Melody to incorporate her love of water in the wedding and I knew Shelly would have mimosa’s somewhere. Sure they have evolved, but not much has changed. They are still very much the women I grew with and grew apart from.
As I sit here amongst the craziness of what my life with three young boys have become, I know that underneath the paperwork, puzzles and protein shake cartons, I’m still the same woman. The woman I was before having kids – the one who had passion, curiosity and zeal for life. The woman who makes lists, follows through and operates with full force and focus.
And as I finish this journal, along with emails and faxes, I’m also in the midst of celebrating the purchase of our second home, the generous 20k donation to my nonprofit and the ability to fit into size26 jeans 5 months post-baby, I know that while it’s chaos – and sometimes feeling lost is natural, that Yes. “Maria Kang” is still there.