I am almost done being pregnant. We got some fantastic news about the placenta and the reduced chances of my dying during the birth process, but I am not happy.
Does that sound whiney? Well it is a little I suppose. To bad.
Here is my problem. I have a big family. Four kids outside of my body plus the one I am about to give birth to plus Owen and Me. Plus we are living in Owen's parents house with the two of them and his older brother who has pretty much lived here his whole life. I should be happy about having such a large, caring family. They constantly check on me to see if I am ok. They all cheered loudly when I came home from the doctor with news that my chance of death had been lowered from 70% to 5-25%. (depending on if I hemorrhage again.)
I don't feel happy about it though. I feel empty. And like I am going to let them all down by dying anyways and then they will all just get so busy with trying to care for all the kids I just abandoned by dying that they will barely even really notice I am gone unless they are having a bad day and then they will say or think something to the effect of "Why the hell did she have to go and abandon us and make our lives so hard?"
Then there is the fact that oddly enough Owens parents are there for me more than my own flesh and blood is most of the time. Yes, I get that they are both retired and we LIVE IN THEIR HOUSE. But you know what? When Owen's mom worked they still Always made time for us. We never once were made to feel like we were an inconvenience if we stopped by and they weren't expecting us to. I don't even know how many times they cancelled plans over the years because we were here and they wanted every second of our time they could have. You know why I don't know how many times they did it? Cause they have never once admitted to doing it or said a word about it. I am sure it has happened though. There were times we would show up unannounced and they would both be dressed nicely on a Saturday when they would normally have been in their "grubbies" and said they had been home all day and yes of course we could stay for dinner. I am willing to bet that every time that happened, plans with someone else were cancelled.
Now I am guessing that if anyone read past my first paragraph that you are confused about why knowing this makes me feel empty. I should feel blessed to be a part of such a loving family. Why don't I feel blessed? WHY?
Because if Owen and I got a divorce tomorrow I wouldn't get to keep them. They aren't really mine. They are Owen's and they treat me like I am theirs because Owen is theirs and I am his. But I know who they would go with if our marriage ever ended and that would be the right thing for them to do!
But Jaclyn, don't you have two biological families to call your own? Your biological parents got divorced and remarried and now you have two families!
Yes and no.
Let me show you two pictures:
Do you see the similarity in this picture? No, right? That is because the similarity is what isn't there, not what is there.... well and they are both pictures from my younger siblings graduations from High School, but you know, whatever.
See both of these pictures are of the new family my biological parents created when our family fell apart.
And I don't feel like I belong in either of them.
Now let me make one thing perfectly clear. Neither of my families have done anything or said anything to hint or blatantly state that I am a virtual non-member. NOT A THING. This is an issue that is all mine. In my own head.
See I had been thinking and feeling it, but Owen was the first one to say it out loud. Maybe that is cause he knows me and knew something was bothering me and when my families started being to busy to see me without penciling me in first, I think he put two and two together and figured out what was bothering me.... except that his pointing it out made it worse, like what I was feeling was real.
Did you know that my Mom and Dad only see us at church on Sundays and then every other Sunday we go to their house after church for lunch and usually dinner? Unless they have other plans. Then our coming over gets cancelled and sometimes we reschedule for the next week and sometimes we don't.
And did you know that I am never told my other family is going to be in SoCal until they are already here and to busy to see me? And if Owen or I suggest that we go out of our way to come and see them it never works out with their scheduled plan? Granted they have a tendency to make a beeline for the beach, spend the day there and then immediately head back to Utah..... but I am starting to feel more like penpals than actual family.
I understand that they have their own very busy, very full lives.
In the case of my Poppas new family they have only had me to think about for a few years and in that time they have never forgotten a kids birthday or a holiday. Not once. I also understand that Poppa works a job that makes it so he gets most of the information about the goings on of his family via the internet. He is often somewhere else in the world working alone in a little room that is frequently about the same amount of moving space of a small to medium walk in closet. I often wonder if he is lonely, and sometimes he posts things on Facebook that make me wonder if he ever regrets his line of work... (software type of stuff I believe.)
In the case of Mom's new family I have always been the black sheep. I wanted to do things my way whether my way was right or not and I wasn't going to sit there and let anyone tell me otherwise. It made me seem like a bad seed for a long time. (That is as much as I am gonna say about that for now as it is sort of a hot button topic in my family.) I can see where, from their perspective, many of the things Owen and I struggle through are our own bad choices and lack of planning. I don't bore them with the details of the inner workings of our lives. They have made it clear that doing so makes it sound like we are making excuses for our lives. (And I can see how from a "I worked hard and everything worked out in the long run, you must not be working as hard as I did/do" perspective it would seem like that is exactly what we are trying to do. I understand that Dad works upwards of 60 hours a week and is taking classes and is an elder in the church.... and Mom is often either sick or physically recovering from being sick or an injury aggravated by her Fibromyalgia and barely has the energy or physical ability to keep her own house running, let alone take on my large, boisterous family more than every once in a while.
But then I think about Owen's parents. They always have time for us. Always. They have opened up their home to us and do their best to sit back and let us run our own family even if they dont agree with how we are doing something.
And you know what? It makes me wonder.
It makes me wonder what I did that makes my family not want me, not want me to be an active part of their lives.
Is it because I am overweight? Is it because I am a stay at home mom with no education or particularly marketable skills? (Ok, I have the skills, they are just underdeveloped at the moment. Technicality.) Is it something I said or did that they don't want to bring up because they are trying to spare my feelings or prevent me from blowing up and them and making a scene?
I don't have an answer and I doubt I ever will. Maybe I have the pregnancy blues.
Maybe I am just Melancholy.