I've noticed that the writing on this blog swings between two wildly, opposing tones. I either can't believe my good fortune to have such a lovely, beautiful and strong daughter, or I find Claire to be the most frustrating person on the planet.
I have posts that practically beatify my daughter. I talk about about how much I learn from her. I wax about her growth. I marvel at her grace and kindness, her bravery, how smart she is (sometimes all of these wonderful attributes flow forth from me in a single, reverent post).
Then there are is the writing in which I'm counting down the minutes until I can hand her off to her father. I complain about how she doesn't listen. I bemoan the appearance of toddler tantrums. I talk about how hard it is to be a parent (there are too many posts to link for this one, although this one will do).
I must admit I'm becoming paranoid that my readers find me a tad bit schizophrenic (and that my daughter is going to catch on soon too).
Yet, I've noticed a similar swing in other mom blogs too, so maybe I'm not alone. Janine from Confessions of a Mommyholic writes about expecting the usual fight with her daughter, and sharing a precious moment with her instead. Deb at Urban Moo Cow expresses her desire to get the weaning process over, only to discover that she mourns the loss of breastfeeding after it's done so quickly.
Before I had Claire, I had plenty of schizophrenic relationships. I'm no stranger to bad-boy boyfriends, who I would describe as addictions and who certainly weren't good for me. In those relationships, the ups and downs were part of the attraction, and seemed to keep things exciting in a codependent, neurotic kind of way.
Funny, I would never describe my relationship with my daughter as an addiction. She is definitely good for me, and schizophrenic is the wrong word too.
Really, this ebb and flow is a rhythm inherent to the parent/child relationship. It's one of the fascinating, maddening, confusing and beautiful things about parenthood.
Being a mom stretches you in ways you could never imagine -- to the depths of despair and the heights of grace. These two states seem wildly opposing also. In reality, they are both at the heart of what makes us human.
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