Monday, January 17, 2011

What Did I Learn In 2010? Mostly That Motherhood Melts Your BRAINZ

Happy New Year!

 blue dots = CHILD! thoughts interrupting the normal course of human brain activity; just a sampling; VERY SCIENTIFIC


There used to be space in my brain taken up by things like...uh...thoughts. Thinky thoughts.  Like, sometimes I would think a thing. And then I would think something related to that thing. And then the things would string together, and before I realized it, I'd have an entire narrative in my head. The narrative would begin at point A, travel through points B, C, D, and end somewhere around point E. Sometimes I would further weigh those points, juggle them, move 'em around a bit and create a blog post out of them. Other times I would just initiate this other thing called a "conversation."

Then a tiny human being was conceived and born and suddenly a significant portion of my brain melted into her. I do not mean this romantically. (Especially because when I say "melt" I think "cheese.")

What I mean is that I no longer have complete thoughts and I no longer speak in complete sentences and every blog post I try to write takes me 300 years because all focus is gone because anywhere from 25% - 55% of my brain has melted into a gooey, incoherent mash of CHILD! WHAT ABOUT THE CHILD?!?!

And it's not like this part of my brain is one lump over on the left side, contained, reserved for child-centric moments of my life. No. It doesn't work like that. My brain is now bespeckled with CHILD! like a golf ball.  The CHILD! parts interrupt every brain path, every thought, every sentence so that even the most mundane of brain functions has melted CHILD! all over it.

For example?

Normal morning thought, as I walk down the stairs: I would like some coffee.

Current morning thought, as I walk down the stairs to where Ish is entertaining Eve: I would like -- WAS THAT A SHRIEK OF DELIGHT OR IS SHE CRYING? DID EVE SLEEP WELL ENOUGH LAST NIGHT? I HOPE SHE ISN'T STILL SICK -- what was I just thinking? Huh? Have I had coffee yet?

I am not complaining. This isn't complaining. This is me trying to explain why simply existing as a mother is hard to do even if your child is perfectly wonderful: because being a mom takes up space in your brains.

And no one told me that.  Oh, people said things about how "pregnancy brain" lasts for 18 years (har, har) and that your worry over your child never goes away, but no one talks about melted, mushy brains being part of your new everyday existence. They talk about being tired and having Elmo's voice ringing in your ears 24-7, but they don't say it like this, so I will:

There is a part of your brain that exists only to think about, worry about, wonder about, consider and love your child. But HA! You do not grow this extra part of your brain when you're busy gaining 800 million pounds during pregnancy. Nope. Mother Nature isn't that kind. Instead, this new CHILD! thing comes from the brains you already had.

Thus, you no longer have the luxury of "dwelling" on "thoughts." There is no narrative from point A to E; you are lucky if you get from A to A-and-a-half. You can't remember lyrics to songs AND what day of the week it is AND what time that meeting is AND keep your child from hurling herself off a staircase or eating the cat. Sure, you can start writing every. Single. Thing. down -- and you'd better -- but good luck remembering where you wrote it! BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

If I don't put my next doctor's appointment in my phone at the doctor's (which I never do) so that my calendar can email AND beep AND text me when it's coming up AND have the doctor's office call me to remind me AND have my husband keep track as well, there is 0 chance I will make it to the appointment. And THAT, my friend, is Melted CHILD! Brains.

And why my blog posts have gone a little sideways. But I'm here. And posting. And redesigning my site and all that. It's just taking a little longer than I would IS SHE NAPPING YET? like.

Why? What was the question?

8 comments:

  1. You mean that I'm not growing new brains to deal with all these soon-to-arrive new baby thoughts? What is the point of all that DHA that I'm taking anyway?

    I'm two months away from my due date and am not sure if this blog post was a good thing or a bad thing to read at this point in my pregnancy. Either way, glad to have you back...if only partially. ;)

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  2. SO TRUE! I used to think about the possibility of going to grad school to complete a MA and a PhD. Now? I'm just thankful I completed my undergrad before I started experiencing Melted CHILD! Brains. Good bye Academia, hello OH MY GOD WHAT IS THAT SOUND??!!!

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  3. This worries me. Thanks go ADD, I can't get from A to E as it is. If I get even more distracted when I have kids, I'll have to get my address tatooed on my forearm or something.

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  4. oh my. This is what happened to me brains? No wonder I got all these sticky notes around my house!

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  5. Dude, I've seen pictures of the child in question, and it's a miracle to me that you can think of anything other than swallowing her adorable self whole. She's so damned cute!

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  6. I want to thank you for this. I have a 15 month old and am having the EXACT same problem.

    I can literally take a phone message to write down and in the middle of writing said message down forget who it is to and why they are calling. My boss gets half written messages at least twice a day. Now that I htink about it it's a miracle I even still have a job huh?

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  7. Word to all that noise. That's all I've got. That and a righteously slow and emphatic headnod/duckface combo. You're getting that right now, from Florida. You're welcome.

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  8. Haha! I can totally relate. I am 30 weeks preggers and my mommy friends have warned me that preggo brain turns into mommy brain and that my days of having a complete thought ever again are long gone. I also keep dropping things, and I'm too fat to bend over and pick it up. GR!

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