Thursday, March 26, 2009

Yes, another guest blogger

I'm afraid I'm doing the equivalent to "cutting someone off" on the road, except on Mark's blog, sorry if I'm cutting in Terry, I'm guessing because of the weather you've been unable to post...hence, why I'm here!!



Anyways, I'm Jacquie. Mark and I met at Briercrest in 1993, I fell in love with his mom and dad and became an "adopted" daughter I guess. Jobina and I enjoy coffee together when we can, and I let her hold my babies so she can get her baby fix in! :o) What a privilege it has been to know them. I've been married for 13 years (incredible...days we thought we'd never make it past 1, or2, or3 years...we are passionate disagreeers sometimes), I'm the mother of 4 children (also incredible...I actually apparently wanted 6 growing up, but we have successfully stopped at 4.) Their ages are 7, 4, 2 years and 5 months. I'm currently on a maternity leave from one of the most fulfilling jobs I've ever known, a labor and delivery nurse at St. Boniface Hospital in Winnipeg, MB. I've been sucked in by the whole "card making" business, and the honest truth is I love it, but am weary of being called "crafty." I don't craft, I make cards, Ok? Is that enough introduction to build some credibility to post here????? I guess Mark will let me know!



Unlike Mark, I am not an avid book reader, I got through all of high school without reading an entire book in English class. I remember finding out in the middle of a test that a character had died in the book I didn't finish. I think I got better through Bible college, I managed to get through most of the Bible, but failed miserably through the Pentateuch...I think Leviticus did me in. And having children, well, 4 of them, is not very conducive to lengthy reading. But something caught my attention this maternity leave, I'll leave you to put two and two together, but the name of the book is The Dance of Anger by Harriet Lerner.



She prefaces the book right at the start to say that this book isn't meant to be a technical explanation of why women find themselves angry, or for that matter why we should find ourselves occasionally angry. She states that this book is meant for easy reading, and a practical guide to "changing the patterns of intimate relationships." Although she is pretty clear that the changes aren't easy, I know for myself, they have required a lot of self-reflection. Lerner also says that the relationships around you may be consciously or subconsciously against you making changes to your part of the "dance." Even in the crappiest of relationships there lies a resistance to change, despite the obvious need for it.



I find myself angry a lot of the time, this is my main mode of emotion I operate out of, and I've found that anger is more common among young mothers than I would have first guessed. I am in no way a hardcore feminist, but there are "dances" society encourages women to do, or to be, inside of our intimate relationships, that lend to some of this anger, and I am starting to notice. After being at home for a few months of maternity leave, I have found myself yelling at my kids, blaming my husband, and falling into the "irrational" stereotype that women sometimes have hanging over them. I realized this had to stop, and I was the only one in this moment to make it stop. "Anger is a tool for change when it challenges us to become more of an expert on the self and less of an expert on others." (Lerner, pg.102)

Mothers are classic at being an expert on others don't you think? I'm so busy looking after kids, laundry, food, house, that sometimes I wonder, who am I outside of all these things? I know for instance, that Eliot doesn't like crust on his sandwich, Calvin doesn't like mushrooms, Tessa needs to be cozied before bed and Sam needs something soft close to his face before falling asleep. Sometimes, we mothers, let ourselves go, because everyone around us is much louder and more demanding. And I believe, the louder everyone else gets, the more angrier we can become on the inside, and the more resentful we can become thus leading soon to an "eruption" of anger on whomever is on this life journey with or near us.



So, if this is resonating with any of you, I'll share some more stuff I've been reading tomorrow. But if you think it's all a load of feminist BS, then you can let me know too and I'll keep this life change for myself!! :o) I'm ok with that by the way!

49 comments:

Jobina said...

Maybe I have no idea what true feminism is...that didn't sound feminist to me! I've struggled with anger my entire life and when I say struggled I really mean that it is a big problem. (Maybe that's why I married a counselor!) Being a mother and a wife has really challenged the severe anger that I thought I had dealt with. For me nothing helps more than actually admitting out loud (to someone who will not feed my angry thoughts) that I feel angry and why. Somehow it diffuses it for me. There are moments though when I truly need to get away (from the person or situation) in order to keep it together. I look forward to hearing more about what you're reading/learning!

Michele said...

I second Jobina's comment. I have always been angry to some degree or another. It's still an issue for me and I would love to hear more about what you've read and where or where can I get the book!

P.S. Nice to meet you! I'm Jobina's sister.

Dayna said...

jacquie!!! how wonderful to "meet you" here on mark's blog. i was a little shocked to realize that little calvin is 7... that means i haven't seen you and yours for a long, long time. :(

sooo wonderful to get a lil window into your life. i look forward to your next post!

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