Thursday, December 27, 2007

The Truth is ...

The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new. ~Rajneesh

I dig solitude. I crave it. It's all I know.

As a child, I played alone most of the time. As a teenager, I sequestered myself into my room.

After tons of socializing at parties and everything else in college, I just wanted to be alone in my apartment.

Writing fits me for that very reason. I prefer to write alone. I prefer a quiet room and a computer to a whole host of chatty people.

I'd much rather read your thoughts once than hear them a dozen times, which happens in real conversations.

Just the other day, as I was bragging about how my girls love to pretend clean, a relative of ours who shall remain nameless for this story, said this: "You've mentioned that before."

Really? Had I? Perhaps it's because in my life that is about as exciting as it gets. My twin daughters, who I am home alone with for 60 hours a week, like to pretend clean. Still. It's their No. 1 activity. Sorry to be repetitive, but that is what it is like having two toddlers. Repetitive.

So, after one too many conversations like that in my real life in the last week, I withdraw back to my pen and my paper where I am free to repeat myself as often as I'd like because unlike the rest of my life I reign on this blog.

Mix writing with motherhood and, well, it can be rather toxic to your mind. Since I work from home, calls need to be made and received. Research has to be conducted. All of this in the span of a few hours a day.

But, I have chosen this. I am revitalizing an old career while building a new one. I do not speak of these endeavors for privacy sake. But, the truth is, I am doing very well for a newbie.

It also means that I am tied to this house more than I should be at the age of 33. Between the two tots, the writing career, one car, no extra money and no family to visit in the immediate area -- I live a lonely life.

But, I choose this over everything else and would do so again and again.

My point is that I am not pitying myself. I am not upset or sad or angry. I am just puzzled. Puzzled that this is the life I choose. Puzzled over the fact that making friends and maintaining them has become, in recent years, really challenging. Puzzled that motherhood -- despite what it seems from the outside -- is so very lonely and isolating.

Once you become a mom your life is world's apart from everyone else's. And that's what I meant to say in my last post, but didn't.

Schedules, ideologies, philosophies, places of choice ... it all adds up and keeps us separate -- world's apart.

And I can search all day on the streets by knocking on doors and attending playgroups, and attending church services, but I will never find better friends than all of you -- my blogging friends. Is it because we open up our souls the only way we know how -- by writing out the words? If it doesn't get written is it ever said?

Not in my mind. Maybe it goes back to my decade-plus career in journalism, where I took copious notes and then hardly had to look at them again because once I wrote them down, I knew them. They were already planted in my mind -- some of them forever.

The truth is that I don't have any more answers now than I did a week ago. I do know, though, that I am still working madly on some internal errors that even Norton can't help me with.

I have some writing resolutions due to one of my friends. I have some household maintenance issues to attend to. And, deadlines looming.

Thank you for visiting today.

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Shelli said...

Shawn, I'm so glad you didn't stay away too long. Because, as usual, I can relate to what you say. You are probably one of the bloggers that I most relate to. I've said it before too, but it IS hard to find friends, isn't it? For me it's not so much being a mom but my age - or maybe both. Blogging reaches way out beyond my neighborhood and town. And it reaches out to like-minded souls who, like me, like to sit quietly, alone, reading and writing. That is probably why we have a hard time finding each other any other way.

As for repeating things ~ I giggle at that. My husband and I talk about the same things over and over again. We are probably the only people in our lives who could put up with it.

Candace & Anna said...

I am glad you found peace with yourself! I too am glad you are back. I have missed you even though it has only been a short time.

A Mom's world does make you a little isolated and we have to enjoy it or we will go crazy. I guess that is why many moms chose to go back to work outside of the home. Me I would rather be isolated and enjoy every precious moment with my little girl and all of my bloggy friends lol.

Kasie @ ~The Art of Life~ said...


ONEDIA said...

Shawn, glad to have you back. You speak volumes that I understand in my core. Years of working IN THE WORLD was so trying and maintaining friendships are difficult. The whole MOM thing does get easier, though I only had 1 very easy child -- but until she was 7 I did it essentially alone with a full time demanding career so I think I can relate there. But I often felt that amongst Mom, wife, navy officer, that Onedia was shoved into the back of a closet in those early years of hers.

Think I am rambling , but know that I understand in the most basic manner.

Write on my wall anytime !

marta said...

As an only child raisedout in the boondocks by a single dad with two jobs , I know and cherish alone--but the alone-ness of motherhood is all together different. Keep writing.

Katie said...

I have only recently found your blog, but wanted to say that I am glad you are sticking with it. What I have read so far is by far is a refreshing change from much of what is 'out there' and well written on top of it!

Happy to have found you!

LauraC said...

It's nice to read your eloquent words again. Hope you had a nice holiday!

Shannon said...

I think Shelli's right. We relate to each other because of our complicated relationship with solitude...we are the ones who crave it yet feel it swallowing us whole in it's darkness at the same time. Both motherhood and writing are isolating--blogging is bonding within the isolation.
Is it cold in here, or is it just me? :-P

Bastet said...

Glad to see you are back!

I think writing is somewhat theraputic...and blogging gives us the ability to be more honest because in reality we can hide behind the just makes it easier to speak our true feelings.

BTW, my daughter cleans a lot too, imitating mommy I guess! ;)

tlc said...

Hey Shawn. I got your Christmas card and I am glad that you told me to check you out on here. I don't really know what to say, but I know that I don't want to make you feel wierd or upset about anything that you feel and have expressed here (not that my opinion could even do that to you). It is a difficult thing to find yourself not in control of how life comes at you day after day. I am not as isolated as you describe but I crave it at times. When the stupidity of humanity scorns my spirit and I feel like I can't fix it...yet again. Then something true and defining signals me that I am where I am needed, and somehow belong even if I am very, very, very different.

I do miss the people we were back then. I wish that I could've been a little different back in the day. I did not express a whole lot to you about what I felt. I knew my views were far from the ones you carried inside of you. I respected you for that and I am not sure if you did, but I accepted it and enjoyed our visits. I am not a feminist, by far. I just do not let anyone put me in the place they think I should be and that gives me a very unique status without alot of hassle of expectations to respond in a general way. Some women hate it and get competitive with me over it, men don't notice a whole lot...they just say that is the way I am and it puts them at ease. I am not just stupid to it all...I just pick and choose my fights. It has to be worth it for me to make someone understand the world that I see and take in. Everything that I did or did not do back then doesn't need to be justified or validated...It is the path I needed to stroll to become the woman I am today. And is somewhere between a lost soul with all these dreams and a mother of two beings who behold me as the sun of their universe. Not too far off, alike become the differences.

I write so much. About the world that no one would believe, about the joys I find within my family and girls, I have written to them since I found out they were in the womb. I've written to forgive myself for personal decisions I've made that have impacted me far differently than I thought at the time. I write when I am extremely happy and unbearably sad. Now I have a new place to write to you! I look forward to visiting you and regaining a recognition of a friendship so far away. Your girls are beautiful and they photograph happiness! Whatever you sacrifices are, you are blessed with them!

Being a parent (mother or a father) is a segment of life that is bittersweet. You love the highs and the lows seem to drag you d
n...but find solice in the knowing that when the time comes to reflect on the timing and the happenings of your life, you will know that the struggle will make you strong and make you enjoy your peaks that much more.

Love Ya Shawn!

tlc said...

Shawn, I just had to write back again. What a cool thing this blogger page is! I had time to read a little more and you have a good support system and fan base here. Thank you for sharing this with me and I promise to be back very soon.

Shawn said...

TLC: So glad that you found me! Again, that is. It's great to hear from you. We had a very rough night around here as two tots are very sick ... another present given to them over the holidays. But, I will respond to all very soon.

Megan said...

Shawn, I come to your blog via Laura's. I have enjoyed it for a few months now. I love your writing tips and your links to keeping toddlers busy. I also appreciate your honesty. I hope that you continue to blog/write but understand the need to wrestle with the unknown and 'unplug'. Happy 2008!

writermeeg said...

Wow, once again I relate on so many levels it's creepy. Having the same feelings lately, especially on friendships and companionship "offline" (my in-laws, too, are 90 minutes away and whatever; my own family much farther).

Turning 35 in a few months and have never felt as disconnected from girlfriends, longing for comfortable friends nearby to just have tea with. And yet wouldn't choose any other life either, loving the time with my DD and DH (tiring as it sometimes is).

I just got my Mothering mag today, and Peggy O'Mara wrote about trusting ourselves in motherhood, and its complications. She talks about how strained relationships with friends, and needing to find new friends, is a normal, healthy part of motherhood.

OK, I'll try to trust that!

Best of luck to you, and please know I struggle with such similar issues -- you're not alone!

And hope the girls feel better, too...

Mary P Jones (MPJ) said...

Glad to have you back. I have made closer friends online in recently years than I have in real life. I think people open up, I open up, more and we make ourselves more vulnerable, learn more, in this online world. We find those kindred spirits more easily here it seems.

village mama said...

Happy New Year Shawn!

I read this post, and honestly, I was, am blown away by how much I have in common with you.Mothering and writing is like water and oil, you CAN put them in a glass together, but...gotta go scream my head off at the toddler's who are fighting over one book, regardless of the @#$%^ million they own!