One thing that is freaking me out most of all is that NO ONE is telling me this is a bad idea.
Not the Czech Republic part of the transfer, because a couple of friends have shown concern about this part of it.
But the having a baby part.
NO ONE has been unsupportive of this!
NOT ONE PERSON.
How is this possible?
And why does that make me feel so uncomfortable.
Am I hoping for someone to tell me it’s a bad idea?
Is that because I think it is?
Do I want someone to tell me I’m going to be a terrible mother and I should never even consider this, because secretly I’m terrified that this is the truth?
Not all of me feels this way, but my shock at the positive supportive responses I’m getting does suggest that a part of me indeed does.
I want to write off these supportive people with a “they’re just sick of me talking about having children, and they’re glad I’m finally doing something.”
Yet, I can’t hold that thought for very long because these are the people in my life who are my family, they are the ones who Love me and know me best of all the people I know.
So, do they see something in me that I’m afraid to see?
Do they see the mother inside of me, the one who HAS talked about becoming a mom with a dreamy smile and a happy heart for all of these years? The one that I seem to forget when I’m questioning the unconditional and positive support I’m receiving?
I’m truly dumbfounded that no one has reacted with the gasping horror when I tell them I’m planning to have a baby by embryo donation, or even when I announced I was adopting.
It seems to me that the natural response would be at least a flash of distaste, a sweep of my physical appearance, and a ‘tsk tsk’ at my age. Something?
But no one has. Not one person.
In fact, everyone has been far beyond a general “this is great,” they’ve been excited, “you have to do this!” “This is so right!” “I Love this for you!” “You’re already a mom, I am excited you will finally get to be one”.
It makes me feel like a fraud. Like I’ve somehow given them the impression that I am mom material.
I want to wave my hands and say something like, “no, no, no, I think you misunderstand, I’m going to have a BABY, a HUMAN CHILD, under my care, ALONE, with no one else present, for their lifetime.”
I feel they don’t quite get what I’m saying or the ramifications.
And if I explain it in a different more clear way they’ll then go, “ohhhh, right, a human child, ahhh… oooh… ssshhh… nooo, that’s not a good idea. You? A mom? Oooh, no, no, no, I see now, no that’s really quite bad. Don’t do that.”
Then I will feel like the world is on the right axis, and like the fraudulent me is exposed.
A part of me thinks a little less of my family of friends for not seeing through the façade that I feel as though I’ve erected. How can they not see this as a bad idea?
Am I a fraud?
Is asking the question proof that I’m not a fraud… like repeatedly questioning my sanity is proof of sanity?
Having no one question me about whether I’m ready, or worthy, or capable, or able, or out of my friggin’ mind, means I don’t feel as though I can discuss it with them. I want to, I want to unpack all of these thoughts and understand why I’m having them, why I feel uncertain when no one around me does. And answer the questions…
Will I be a good mom? Why? And… Am I ready?
In my imagination I am.
Perhaps that’s the rub; I spend so much time in my imagination that I’m no longer certain that I can live up to who I am in there. In real life I feel like a failure, in my imagination – I am a superhero of perfection.
So, what if I’m not? What if I revert to all the things I learned growing up? What if I can’t Love my child in the way that they need it, what if I’m not enough and they never forgive me? What if I do all of that and don’t even know or understand what or why or how I went wrong? What if I don’t even know I went wrong until it’s too late and my kids are long gone?
What if I replicate the relationship I had/have with my mom and I end up alienating myself from my kids?
This scares me the most. Having children, loving them as much (or more as I’m told) as I Love my fur-baby, Greyson, and having them write me off anyway. What if they leave me too? It would break my heart more than I can fathom, it would kill me.
Looking after Greyson this year when he had his broken leg was such a challenge for me and it only lasted three months. Although I went over and above the call of duty according to all of those around me, it never felt like enough to me.
What if I can’t do this parenting thing? Alone.
Is the support I’m receiving from my family of friends genuine because they see the mom in me, or more of a “alright already, just have a damn child and get on with your life!”
I feel guilty for questioning the people I Love most in the world.
They are amazing people who would never tell me lies to keep me placated.
(Though I do prefer lies that make me happy; to truths that make me sad.)
So I’m certain they are not lying to me, which makes it all the more troubling.
By elimination, then, the person who must be lying is me. Fraud.
In my imagination, I am going to be the most amazing mom. when I’m talking about it with my friends, I’m talking about it from the point of view of the “Super Ali” the one who lives in my imagination and is the most amazing person you’ll ever meet (the most amazing person I’ve ever met!).
But she’s not the person who is the living breathing me when I’m going about my day to day life.
In reality, I’m a bit of a shut-in. I like spending time alone – a lot! I guess that feels kind of selfish, but selfishly I don’t want to change that part of me. I Love it. I feel uncomfortable when something outside of the ordinary happens. Okay, let’s say that truthfully – my world shakes when something unexpected happens. I don’t like surprises as a general rule, they make me feel embarrassed and uncomfortable and uncertain of how to respond. I will go further to say I don’t much like presents for the same reason; they make me embarrassed, uncomfortable and uncertain how to respond. I like control. Yep, I said it, control makes me feel comfortable. I like to read. I like watching movies. I Love to write. I like to walk – or at least I did before the broken elbow. I Love my cat, and I Love him because he gives me space and we’ve found our rhythm. I’m crotchety about sharing my space with others. I don’t like houseguests for too long. I HATE the pop-in. I don’t answer the telephone when it rings unless I’m expecting a call – I find phone calls rude unless they are pre-arranged. I don’t enjoy entertaining all that much, although I suspect that’s about my surroundings not about actually entertaining (“Super Ali” would actually Love to entertain, but I’m always in a house with space and enough seating for all, instead of this tiny 1br apartment with seating for two). I don’t find humour in the things others find humour in, I have a very unusual sense of humour, and as a result I don’t genuinely laugh all that often (I have not genuinely belly laughed for months). I fake laugh quite a lot, though I do feel amused throughout every day. Escapism. I can spend hours in silence dreaming up an elaborate world, the world I want to live in. That’s how I like my life, full of fantasy, and time alone in silence with my thoughts.
How will any of that translate into being a parent?
Of course, if I pull back from this panic and be kind to myself and look at all of the transitions I’ve been through in my life – the one thing that I am consistently is: ADAPTABLE.
I adapt really well to my situation, to my surroundings, and to new versions of myself.
And to be honest, I’ve been so many versions of myself I’ve lost count. The ones I can remember are as diverse as diversity can be.
So long as they’re not sudden changes and I have time to imagine and ruminate in the outcome I want from change, I even adapt easily, joyously moving toward the next new me. I actually Love change when it is planned, I find it life-giving, exciting, thrilling even… under the right circumstances.
Even with sudden changes, while there is a time of panic and fear (see the previous post about my flight, freeze, fight response), I still keep walking through it until I can find a way to see the bright side.
While that whole paragraph above “about me” sounded like a “downer” I’m actually really happy with who and where I am right now. I Love being me, and appreciate all of those things about me. I am truly grateful that I get to be me and no one else. I’m just not sure how my “hermit-like” lifestyle will accommodate a child.
This is why pregnancy is so appealing to me… the 38-40 weeks to prepare.
The uncertainty of adoption and then the swiftness of the transition was extremely stressful to my way of operating. I am much more comfortable with this idea of pregnancy – though not so much the birth itself (yikes!).
I get months to prepare, and months to slowly feel the transition of this change.
I know I will pull it all together and I will step up and be an amazing mom. I know that my willingness to worry about recreating the relationship (or lack of) I have with my own mother will help me ensure I don’t do just that. (Though I’m so grateful for my own upbringing because it allowed me to traverse the world and be who I am today.)
And I am certain that the child who chooses me will learn and grow through my imagination as much as I do. We will find our groove, we will find our rhythm, and we will operate from a place of Love. Love will be the key, I know this and I am certain of my ability to Love unconditionally even.
Is this what my friends see? Is this why they are not concerned about me becoming a mom?
Will it be enough though? Is Love enough? Will it balance any mistakes I make as a mom, or as a human trying to be a mom?
I still wish someone would run the pros and cons list with me so that I didn’t feel that everyone was more certain than me.
How about you? Have you ever felt like a fraud when everyone around you believed you were something you were not yet certain of yourself?
I’d Love to hear from you…
Warm smiles and Love,