So, I've been avoiding my blog for a while. Part of it is purely because I couldn't be stuffed. Part of it is because I've been doing early shifts for the last couple of weeks while simultaneously trying to fight off a really bad cold/lung infection combo. After two weeks straight of coughing to the point of causing the lining of my throat to bleed, I think I am finally turning the corner.
I got my uni grades for the summer term yesterday - a pass, a credit and a distinction. The subject I got a pass for, I failed the assignment for the subject and it was worth 50% of my mark, so I'm just glad to have passed at all. I suppose that's what happens when you realise 10 minutes before the cutoff time for submission that you are meant to have 10 references for an assignment that is a case study on a 'patient'.
The funny thing about the subject that I got a distinction for is that I got a credit plus on the assignment worth 50% of the mark. The assignment that I waited a week before the due date to start collecting references for and only started to put it together on the day it was due. Meanwhile, there were a heap of people bleating on the course forum after the marks came out, saying that they had busted their humps all term working on the assignment and that they couldn't understand where they had gone wrong. I was thinking to myself that if I was able to get the mark I got by 'phoning it in' at the last minute, where the hell had these people gone wrong? Meh, not my problem, I got a distinction! Man, that makes me sound like a real bitch...
Now that the housekeeping is out of the way, onto the D&M stuff. I've been pondering this one for a while and have finally gotten around to putting fingers to keyboard.
In some ways, I feel a little sad for Wombat.
I feel like he misses out on so much of me, being the second child. Seagull had me all to himself for his first 11 months, and even then, I only went back to work for three days a week until he was about 18 months old. Wombat has never had my undivided attention and I went back to work full time when he was 9 months old.
When I finish work, I feel so wrecked that all I am often capable of is cooking dinner (the last couple of weeks I haven't even been up to that), flaking out in front of the TV and going to bed. I feel guilty that my children spend so much time in front of the TV. I don't read to either of them anywhere near as much as I used to.
I've hardly ever read books to Wombat at all. I've realised in the last couple of days that the only words Wombat says are 'Dad' (often) and 'Mum' (occasionally). Now I'm wondering if my lack of reading to Wombat has resulted in language development delays. I'm going to be contacting a speech pathologist on Monday to make an appointment.
What makes it all even worse is that I feel like I connect better with Seagull on an emotional level. Seagull is outgoing, feisty and fiercely independent. I can relate to that. Wombat on the other hand, is more reserved, quiet and just wants lots of cuddles. As much as I love cuddling Wombat, sometimes I feel smothered by his strong need for physical affection. Then I feel guilty for it.
All in all, I'm feeling like a pretty crappy parent at the moment.
The one thing that makes me feel slightly better about it all is that I am still breastfeeding Wombat. He is 16 months old now and I get some funny looks and offputting comments from some people when they realise that Wombat is still breastfeeding. To be honest, it is one of the few things that I feel like I'm doing right at the moment and as Wombat shows no signs of wanting to give it up, I'm not going to force it.
Even though I tend to find physical contact stiffling, I find the physical closeness of breastfeeding comforting. Except for the times when Wombat decides that he'd rather perfect his gymnastic repertiore whilst attached instead of just laying still. Overall though, it's an experience I find hugely rewarding.
Parenting is certainly not easy. I suppose all anyone can do is their absolute best with the knowledge and resources they have at their disposal. It still doesn't stop me from feeling like crap at times.