Why I Blog

I know now what emotion triggers me to write: insecurity. Let me demonstrate.

My first day as a newlywed 19-year-old, fresh out of her parents home, and having waved my husband of two months off to his job, in a strange house, in a strange state, what did I do? Started a blog.

The day I took out my first school loan to attend school full-time all on my own, in my name, what did I do? Blog.

What did I do when Justin deployed to Afghanistan in 2008? Started a deployment blog.

What did I do when Justin deployed to Iraq in 2009, and three days later I started a new, four-year university, already facing a lot of responsibility as an editor of the school paper– a school I had only visited once, with colleagues I had never met? Blogged.

What did I do when I found out I was finally pregnant? Blogged

When Justin deployed again? Blogged.

When we discovered Jackson had only one kidney? Blogged.

When he was admitted to the hospital? MAJORLY blogged. Apparently that was the most insecure I’ve ever been.

And, now, here we are. We’ve been home, I’ve been busy, Jackson’s been amazing, Sydney is happy, and my security has come back, hence my long hiatus.

So… can anyone guess why I’m writing today?

I’m feeling insecure.

Justin received some news about his job that makes the certainty I’ve been allowed to feel, disappear, and, I had an overwhelming urge to write, to get it out, to make this feeling GO AWAY.

It may not even be a bad thing. We don’t know yet. It will mean no deployments, so that IS a good thing. But, it could also mean distance from DFW, from Texas… and we all know how I am with that. Or, well, if you don’t know, then, I’ll just say, I am a GIANT BABY about being far from my parents. And, my parents are GIANT BABIES about being far from us, and their grandkids.

But, it might not mean that at all. It could mean we stay right where we are, or closer. It could also mean we could be anywhere.

Basically, our lives are up to the Air Force gods, and that isn’t something I’ve truly experienced. We’ve always managed to keep a pretty good handle on doing whatever we can to keep our destiny in our own hands. But, this time, we can’t.

And, it’s killing me.

Four extra years of not having to worry that Justin will deploy to some terrifying place (and with the way the world is going, there’s no guessing where he could end up) is a dream come true, so even if we end up across the country, I am grateful about that for Jackson, Sydney and myself. But, Baby Rachel, Selfish Rachel, the one who really has no desire to leave the border of Texas, is completely, 100% freaking out.

Hardcore. So, hello blog.

The Real Me

If you read my blog in its entirety, I sound like the most depressed, melancholy person on the planet.

It’s not the case, I swear!

Having Jackson in April and all the terribleness that happened this summer did cause me to have a bout of Postpartum Depression (it exists, Tom Cruise, so shut it! In the words of Rachel Green: “No uterus, no opinion.”), but usually my writing is witty, smug and subtly sarcastic.

I want to get back to that.

Not that deep, soul-bearing writing doesn’t have its place, because it absolutely does, but in my life, I would rather it not be what I’m known for. I want to be the writer that people love because of the hidden jabs in her writing, that, while don’t make you roll on the floor trying to control your bladder, make you smile as you lay in bed, right before you drop your phone on your face (you’ve done it, fess up).

I’ve bared my soul plenty this summer; it’s time to be a bit more chaste.

So, be prepared to smile a bit more, and tear up a bit less. Which is why, I will leave you with this: MY CUTIE!


Couples Who Don’t Want Kids Are Selfless

Selfless. Positively, 100% selfless. You know how I know? Because they have the insight to know that they don’t have the time to give kids the attention they deserve, and they don’t want to resent a child that didn’t ask to be born.

Earlier this evening, while our son was crying in his swing, and our daughter was throwing a tantrum on the floor, I took my husband’s hand, and led him to the hallway, where we shut the door, and witnessed absolute silence (the air conditioning unit drowns out any sound from the living areas.)

I looked him in the eyes, and said, “Remember when we didn’t have kids? And, we did anything we want, whenever we want? And, when we had a headache, we could easily find someplace to close our eyes and enjoy a little quiet time? Remember that?”

Yes, he did, and I could see the longing in his eyes for the days when Peppa Pig and Buzz Lightyear didn’t dominate our television.

We took another few moments, shared a hug and and a kiss, and went back out to our little minions– minions we willingly created. We chose to put their happiness in front of our own (really, we try to make them happy… maybe screaming makes them happy, I don’t know!).

Couples who know they don’t want kids don’t make that decision lightly, just as most parents who choose to have kids don’t make it lightly. They are being selfless by not bringing a tiny tot into the world that isn’t going to be the center of the world– which IS what kids deserve.

You don’t have to have kids to be a part of society– it’s not a requirement. You don’t have to be called mommy or daddy to find meaning in life. You don’t have to be forced into creating mini-me’s when you don’t want any.

It’s selfless. So, people need to lay off the whole, “When are you gonna have a baby?! Don’t you want to be a mom/dad? There’s nothing like it!”

Maybe for them. Not for everyone. For me, yes, I WANT to be mommy. I’m laying in bed watching Toy Story 3 with my biggest screamer, while she cuddles my arm. I’m in love. But, it’s not always kisses and smiles. It’s a lot of work. And, I chose it.

But, if someone chooses not to, respect their choice, and realize it’s just as valid a decision as the choice to reproduce.

We only get one life to live, and we should all live it the way we want.