This weekend was rough.
We released our pet turtle, Terrapin, into a preserve close to our house. He turned 5 years old this year and while we toyed with the idea of building an outdoor enclosure for him since his indoor tank was just not cutting it anymore, we made the hard decision to release him back into the wild. J’s dad had actually found baby Terrapin stranded in the dirt on their rural property in Gainesville while mowing. He had a damaged eye and was only about the size of a half-dollar. We took him in, nursed him back to health, and watched him grow and grow for five years. While J had an instant connection with him, he took much longer to warm up to me (he used to hiss at me whenever we’d clean his tank, meanwhile he would always let J take him out and wax his shell without any problems), and after 5 years losing any pet is always difficult. We took Jaxson with us to release Terrapin and the whole time Jaxson kept saying “turtle, turtle” in a sad, sweet little voice. I know he is going to miss his friend, but we promised him and ourselves we’d go back to visit our turtle often.
I had a meltdown this weekend. Like full-blown I am freakin’ insane yelling/crying/snot everywhere meltdown. I am embarrassed and ashamed that I couldn’t keep it together, moreso because this meltdown occurred in front of our son. I vowed long before we became parents that I wouldn’t be the parent I feared growing up, the one that yelled and threw things and slammed doors, the one that scared children with my rants and anger. And this weekend I epic failed on all counts. I yelled. I cried. I cursed. I failed as a parent and poor Jaxson was scared and upset, confused and worried, coming up to make sure I was okay yet hesitant to approach me while angry tears ran down my face making me look quite horrible I’m sure. Luckily, J saved him by taking him to read stories for naptime, and I went and took a shower and a nap myself to cool off. Later, she asked me to never do that in front of him again and I wholeheartedly agreed, fresh tears rolling down my cheeks from guilt, angst, turmoil, embarrassment.
I can’t pinpoint the exact reason I lost my mind on Sunday afternoon. I know that it wasn’t just one single event that triggered it, like the turtle. It was more like a 10-car pileup of little things that I’d just stuffed down and away to be dealt with later. I know that I always get moody around my birthday, and with all of our stresses at home lately it’s been difficult to cope. I’ve felt down lately for a multitude of reasons: poor health, lack of intimate time with my wife, fears/worries over money, work, the future. Lying deep underneath all of these reasons, however, lies an impatience and anger over the fact that I should have been trying to get pregnant at this time this year, and instead we pushed it back until next year.
I feel stupid for feeling this way and for acting the way I did. I feel ridiculous and childish, like I’m throwing a tantrum because I’m not getting my way right now. And honestly, that’s exactly what it felt like on Sunday and I just couldn’t stop. All of these feelings and emotions just poured out of me like a pipe had burst inside of me and the shut-off switch just wasn’t working. I know that in a perfect world I should have had my period last week, and despite never actually having it I do still get the hormone fluctuations. Add to that the fact that I turned a year older last week and watched our original deadline for TTC pass by us without any momentum or progress forward…well, to say I’m frustrated is an understatement.
I know why we are waiting to TTC, but it doesn’t make it any easier to be patient when every fiber of your being is yearning to have a baby in your belly. I told J mid-rant yesterday that yes, I knew I was fully on-board the crazy train but that I couldn’t control myself, I want it so bad it hurts. And I’ve never been good at patience. It just all came to a head because releasing the turtle made me sad to say goodbye to our pet, Jaxson’s sad little voice crying out for the turtle made me feel guilty although J and I knew we were doing right by Terrapin, and some other events regarding Jaxson’s babysitting situation this upcoming week happened simultaneously to the release of the turtle which made me feel disappointed, helpless, and hopeless because how the hell are we ever going to have another baby because we can’t even manage the one we have? Piling all those emotions on top of the ones already present was just too much for me to deal with and I snapped. Hard. Now that I look back on the things I was yelling about yesterday, I feel ridiculous. All of these things shouldn’t be affecting me the way they are, and J was right when she said: “Everything always happens for us at the right times, stop trying to rush through our life, can’t you just stop and enjoy the wonderful life we have right now?”
You know what – she’s right. I don’t have an age restriction, I’m not dying, and there is really no foreseeable reason why waiting one year to TTC should be a problem. If anything, it just gives us more time to spoil Jaxson with all of our love and attention and enjoy the ride that is life with a toddler and meet each milestone together with wonder and amazement. And so I promised her I’d do my best to never freak out like that in front of our children again. I promised I’d try harder to be more patient and take the time to just enjoy the now of our wonderful life with our wonderful son. And she said she understood how I felt and she still loved me and that it would all be okay and work out at the right time for us, and I believe her. Because I know together we can and will accomplish all of our dreams, and that includes another baby, someday. And I’m taking her advice and focusing on the things that I can do right now to get ready for our TTC journey, because she knows me well enough to know that I hate being at a standstill and feeling like there is zero forward movement.
And so today I scheduled an appointment with our new OBGYN office for September 22. I feel relieved, knowing this crazy train is finally able to leave the station and that I am in control and actively doing something to move us closer toward our next baby. It’s going to be a long ride, but that’s okay, Jaxson is enough to keep us busy and by focusing everything on him instead of just the future, I have a feeling the time will fly by. I don’t want to have regrets later because I couldn’t slow down long enough to live my life and enjoy it, so that’s just what I plan to do.