Friday, June 1, 2007

shades of green

If I were more open, this blog would be gussied up in shades of green, at least until I can get my head out of my arse.

If I could successfully, permanently "turn down the volume level" of one particular emotion, it would be jealousy. I drive myself batshit crazy with it, I was awake from 2:30am - 4:30am and could think of little else.

I've just finished devouring two books, "Baby Love" by Rebecca Walker, and "Operating Instructions: A Journal of my Son's First Year" by Anne Lamott. I use the verb "devour" because it took me three days to finish both books and while I was reading them, I felt nourished by them. These days, I find great relief to read about other women having less-than-calm reactions to pregnancy and infants; I feel much less isolated by pregnancy, I can at least hope that I'm gathering useful information, or perhaps it boils down to just being a fantastic distraction from life.

As much as I was loving the authors as I read their books, I was also seething with jealousy towards them.

Which makes me a horrible person.

Rebecca Walker has endured a naaaasty relationship with her own mother.
My relationship with my own mother hasn't been shiny and perfect, but we're absolutely crazy about each other, and love each other unconditionally.

So why is my heart so black that I think she's got it easy because she can afford to travel and doesn't have a paper-slinging job to report to five days a week?
Why am I bothered that she spent her pregnancy eating organic salads while I don't have the means to buy only organic food?

It gets worse.

Anne Lamott is a sober recovering alcolohic and a single mother eeking out an existance as a writer by the grace of God, and because she's developed a fantastic support network. (It must also help that she seems to have a fantastic sense of humor)

(Hoo boy) I actually found myself jealous of her strong faith (!), and worse yet, I had to stop myself from counting up how many people regularly stopped by her apartment to help her care for her son. It seems that she is close friends with a cast of thousands! Where do I sign up for that? I've been blessed with happy, stable relationships with my family, my husband, and several close friends - and yet I found myself wondering "are there enough people to bail me out when I need them?"

No pity party fuel here, I think it's more along the lines of me needing more a little more sleep, a change of perspective, and/or a break from bouts of morning sickness.

All the same, I'm nearly ashamed to look at the books I so recently enjoyed; I'm going to pack them away until someone else is pregnant and needs them. Maaaaaaybe I'll find that I'm not the only person neurotic enough to harbor even temporary jealousy towards authors of baby/pregnancy narratives.

1 comment:

Jenny said...

You're not alone. I had the same issues. In fact I decided that if I ever met the former playboy bunny who wrote that guide to pregnancy book that I would kick her in the shin. Playboy bunnies aren't allowed to also be successful writers. It's just not right.