Before I met my baby daddy at the ripe age of 32, I was a wild child. I was a social monarch, fluttering around to my abundant amount of butterflies. I spent most nights out, probably as some tactic to avoid being alone. I’ll let you know for sure when I finally take the plunge into the therapy pool. I was excessive, impulsive and, if I am honest, chaotic.
Then the stars aligned as I met my soulmate at a mutual friend’s wedding. It was bliss, but waters still splashed as we navigated through long distance and job layoffs. All was not calm like silent night. There were tears amidst the love and uncertainty among the certainty.
Three years later we would finally get our first apartment and get engaged. A year later we were married, and less than a year after that, we welcomed our first baby. There still were not tranquil waters. We were still navigating. We were thrown into newness and, as teachers at the time, our jobs were still not secured. We never really fell into a routine. We tried.
We tripped into a miscarriage. Cue devastated chaos.
But the dust started to settle and we got pregnant again! We had jobs and life was giving us our debut. We were illuminated by spotlight. I can almost hear our cast singing “curtain up, light the lights”….you get my drift.
Our baby was born with Down syndrome.
We had no idea. I did obsessively worry it might happen for nine months but, other than that, we didn’t know. The whole next year was a new whirlwind.
Someday, a book. Today, a summary: it was acceptance and then inconceivable love. There were therapies and education; immersion into a new world and also back into our old one. There were different milestones and the pleasantly, unexpected, positive attention. That, I was not prepared for. There was this unabashed need to be my most me ….unveiling all my layers. Fierce love, passionate advocacy, inexplicable bonding. It was something I cannot quite put into words, but I can tell you, a timid routine it was not.
Soon after, my dog died an untimely — way too young — death. And it sucked in a chaotic and dramatic way…
But a new normal formed. Our little family was becoming a thing. We all knew our lines. We were like a very censored version of the rat pack, playing off of each other’s energy.
And at 42 years old, in true chaotic fashion, I accidentally got pregnant. Fear was a fire in my belly. This was not the plan. We were the 4 Cravers!! We paired off perfectly like kindergarten lines on a field trip. Ugh. I was so mad. We were finally getting it right.
So here we are. It’s been eighteen months since our third little boy was born. And he’s a pip. He’s like, I birthed chaos. He’s a wonderful tornado of independent curiosity. Let’s just say, I don’t really go a day without hearing “you’ve really got your hands full.”
And I do. I cry. I bitch. I call my mommy. I flail. And yet I succeed and throw myself silent victory parties. I bring on more. I think about a daughter, a lot. I think about adopting a baby with Down syndrome. I want a puppy. I’m really considering a hamster for my son’s birthday. I want a degree in music therapy. I want to be an administrator. I currently just received my Uber driver credentials. I cannot stop my chaos. It is like another limb.
I should meditate more. I do meditate. I pray. I do yoga and take walks. But I have not yet relinquished the need for a chaotic system.
The definition of chaotic is actually “in a state of complete confusion and disorder.” But it’s antonym is calm. Calm is indeed my antonym, however, I am not confused about my condition.
All of this word searching led me to the word frenzied… which I actually love. “An uncontrolled state or situation.” I crave an uncontrolled state because I thrive when I create one. I’m like a party girl who still longs to knit.
So, I write this piece looking for answers or in hopes that there are others out there like me? And while I am trying to tone down my fascination with frenzy, I also do wonder: Is there is something to be said about soaking up the washcloth of life and squeezing out every last drip? My tombstone may very well read “lived a life of chaos,” but it could also read “No Regrets!”