Not So Random Thoughts On: How Pregnancy Changes Friendships

​8 months into this pregnancy and I never would’ve guessed I’d feel so lonely. Prior to finding out I was pregnant, I was social. I attended parties. I went out dancing once a month at clubs and bars. I spent an hour or two on the phone with friends. I listened. I reached out. I was always there. Always down to hang out. Always willing to support a friend.

Pregnancy has changed me. It’s not that I don’t want to still be a social butterfly; my wings are just tired.

By 8:30, I’m ready to call it a night. Early morning and/or midday naps are a godsend. Shortness of breath makes it a struggle to hold long conversations. Sitting or standing for extended lengths of time hurts my body.

I thought going through this experience would bring me and my friends closer. I thought I had an amazing network of friends who were thoughtful and supportive and would be with me every step of the way. I was wrong.

I’ve been accused of not being around and of being cold when I was simply setting boundaries. I’ve basically been told, “I miss the old you.” How hurtful to feel so alone in this experience and have people you love project their insecurities and expectations on you.

I can’t be the shoulder to lean on right now. I would love to, but I can’t. And it hurts to have to accept that reciprocity is not there. Now, when I need support and understanding and care the most, now I find myself slowly, but surely, crossing names off my “Support Squad” list.

I don’t need to feel guilty for not being at anyone’s beck and call. I don’t need to be stressed when someone disregards boundaries I’ve set. I don’t need to feel like “Pregnant Jenise” isn’t as cool as “Party Jenise”.

“Pregnant Jenise” is fucking funny, and sassy, and cool, and you would know that if you ever gave her a chance.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m extremely grateful for the ones who have stood by me since day one of this journey. I am beyond blessed to have people who text me simply because they’re thinking of me and the baby. People who want to hang out and laugh with me. People who offer support instead of opinions.

But, I’m still sad about the ones who don’t bother to call or don’t understand where I’m coming from or who expect me to be the same giver I was before.

I’m not that person anymore. And I’m just going to continue to evolve once Baby Jelly is here.

And if that bothers you or you feel “left out” or “ignored”… well, that’s not really my problem, is it?

You can’t be my priority now. If you don’t like that, that kinda sucks for you.

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The Magic of Perseverance and Trusting Your Gut

​Yesterday, through sheer perseverance and the magic of the universe, I made it into blink-182’s soundcheck for the amazing price of FREE. I stood directly in front of Mark, using sheer willpower not to cry. (Okay, I wept a bit.) Since I already saw them in Vegas (Travis twice), I used the opportunity to record video, which I’m refusing to share because it is “my precious” and is mostly Mark walking back and forth in front of Travis.

I did it. I could’ve given up and walked away, but I didn’t. It may seem silly to get so emotional about seeing a band some of you don’t even know, but it was and is such a big freakin’ deal for me. Nobody knows everything I’ve been through in life but me. And only I truly know how hard it is for me to trust my intuition, trust the universe, and go for what I want.

I wanted to meet Travis Barker and see him play live. I found free tickets on the street to see him play a solo set in Vegas. I met him, Mark, and Matt and Matt remembered me from the solo set. I saw them play live. I wanted to see them again. I came up on some great seats from a super sweet person I didn’t even know. I wanted to get into soundcheck. I randomly found out the secret time and got in. I saw them live again. And along the way, I kept running into random friends of the band. These were my confirmations to keep going.

I did it. And I’m going to keep doing it because the universe is on my side.

And, guess what? The universe is on your side, too. So stop doubting yourself. Make that shit happen.

A Message To My Community…

​Last summer, one of my friends got into an altercation. To keep him from fighting, I physically held him back. Yes, all 125 pounds of me. Why? All I could think was that if cops were called, he might not make it home to his mother.

There has been some talk about us doing more than being social media activists and actually stepping out into the streets. And we’ve also been talking about the small steps we take that make huge impacts.

No one knows what triggers us, so no one can tell us how to grieve or take action. Some of us will write. Some of us will march. Some of us will protest. Some of us will speak. We will do what we know the best way we know how.

No one knows all the work we are doing. In our homes, our communities, our jobs, our relationships, or internally. To keep people informed. To keep people safe. To keep people alive.

This is part of the reason why I preach self-care.

We never know when we will be called to deescalate a situation. Or help someone. Or facilitate counseling. Or offer kindness. And we must be ready. We must.

So #selfcareselfcareselfcare.

However you must grieve… However you must heal… However you must open up your heart to a greater kindness… However you are capable of making an impact… Do that shit. Do that shit right now, so when you are called, you are ready.

We must stick together as a community.

Our survival depends on it.

Basically “Straight”?

Today, I was asked if I’m “basically straight”, and I thought that wording choice was so interesting. I’m in a heterosexual relationship and have been in heterosexual relationships for much of my life. I’ve never really identified as “straight”, though. “Straight” never felt right. (I dislike that word, by the way. What are opposites of “straight”? Curved? Diagonal? Curved actually sounds pretty cool, but I digress…) Continue reading “Basically “Straight”?”