Why can't she hold it together? Why can't she keep a man around? What a little tramp, 4 kids, 2 dads??!! A lot of people around the gym think I only have 3 kids because Natalie doesn't go in with me - she's 13, she doesn't need a daycare. So when people find out that I have 4 kids instead of 3 I usually get met with some sort of comment that for some reason leaves me feeling awkward and ashamed. Justified or not, it's just how I feel sometimes. It's not even that I care what people think, because I don't.
I think that part of my own ego-protection kept me in this marriage as long as it did. I knew that people would judge me - 4 kids, 2 failed relationships. What a mess! But it's really not like that. People who really know me know that it's not really like that at all.
You probably wonder where all this is coming from. Well, someone met Natalie yesterday and asked me in surprise..."so how many kids do you have, anyway?" And I told her I have 4. "Oh wow, you're crazy!!" Okay, well, you know that two of them are twins...it's not like I had a discussion with my ovaries and coerced them into releasing two eggs. Regardless, I wouldn't spare a one of them. Of course, this comment made my sad and started the tears again. Not because I think I'm crazy but because I worry about how this is all impacting my children and would they have been better off spared a life like this. It makes me doubt myself. I'm not really sure why I let people like this make me feel small...but I did...
I swear, some days I feel like I'm wearing the Scarlet Letter. If you learn one thing from my blog I hope you learn not to judge someone in a position like mine. We all go thru these stages very differently and I know, personally, I have learned that you can't be an outsider looking in and make judgements. Outward appearances can be far different from what is really going on.