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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Beginning of the Journey


It's been a long time, but I've been taking care of a Newborn-no small feat.  I'm a Mother, a New Mom for the first time and it's hard as I thought it would be and even harder than that.

Ms. Clarke Elise Gilliard made her entrance into this world in dramatic fashion as only a child of mine could on 1/4/12 at 3:23 am.  7lbs, 8ozs and 20 inches.   She was born by emergency Cesarean, because her heart rate was dropping after every contraction and she wasn't progressing downward through the Birth canal.  All that after four days of labor, and the fervent desire to do it all naturally.  I even ended up getting the Epidural.  I was so tired of the pain after all that time dealing with the contractions that I had to get the epidural.   So she came, and they immediately took her to the NICU where she was for almost 3 days, I didn't even get to hold her or really see her until a day later.

Thank God, she's here!   She's healthy.  She's beautiful.  She's perfect and wonderfully made.  She's a gift sent to me by God, and I love her dearly.  I can't imagine my life without her now-although I do remember my life before sometimes, and I wonder if I will ever have some semblance of it!

Thank God my Mother came to help me through the Birth, and I spent some time home with my Mom in MD afterwards-otherwise I would have been alone.  Finally, I was alone with my Daughter, at 6 weeks old, and we are doing fine.  All on our own.  She's my little buddy, and we have finally bonded-it sometimes doesn't happen immediately-and that's normal.   We had a few challenges in the beginning, with her Reflux and breastfeeding ( it is not all it's cracked up to be folks-it can be painful and in my case my milk supply was lower than her demand), but we are working through the issues.  She's healthy and is growing (she's 10lbs)!

I'm blessed to have her.  I LOVE my little munchkin, and I wouldn't change a thing, but I have been a ball of nerves and I admit that.  I worry about Her and if I'm doing the right things all the time.   I speak my mind about how I feel as a new Mom, and I'm real about how hard this is-I express the unpopular opinion.  No folks, it's not all JOYFUL for me-it's been hard, and of course I'm stressed.   I'm a Single Mom, unemployed, and I have minimal support.   No, you won't see me dancing, singing with birds chirping and butterflies flying around my head because of the "Joy of Motherhood" -I'm just trying to get through each day, one day at a time.    I'm stressed and I'm not afraid to admit it.  I have been done trying to maintain the image of Superwoman, better yet, Super Black Woman, for some time.  I can admit when I need help.  I can admit that sometimes I don't have it all under control.  I can admit that everything isn't Perfect.  That is not Life.  That  "it's all good" all the time attitude is a facade.

I need to work-although I always imagined I would be home with my child/children for at least a year in my past dreams!)  I have no financial support from the Father, and if I do take any help from him, as minute as it may be, this crazy Man acts like I owe him something, and for doing what any normal parent should without me having to ask-I mean, he makes a big deal if he buys a pack of Diapers!!   Mind you, I put him out because of the threat of physical violence by Him, WHILE I WAS PREGNANT (he was already verbally abusing me), and him not showing an ounce of concern for the remaining 7 months of my pregnancy without so much as a peep from Him-this "Person" proceeds to tell me how he's gonna come see Her and eventually take her on the weekends.  Really?  I DON'T TRUST HIM AT ALL AND I DON'T TRUST HIM TO CARE FOR HER SAFELY-let alone to raise her right and instill the proper values in Her or to even be a positive Male role model.  He gave me $500 recently to "help out" -and now he thinks he has equal rights as a parent-while still talking to me with no respect.  I was gracious enough to let him see her 2X (each time he came empty-handed), but having him around does not bring peace.  He only brings drama.    As educated as he is, I've NEVER had someone so IGNORANT in my cipher before.  Imagine you are in the King's court as a Lady of the Court surrounded by Kings, Noblemen, Lords & Knights-and then there is the Court Jester.  That's who my Baby Daddy is, the Court Jester.   Damn, can I choose em!  Thank God, my Daughter seems to have received the Best from both of us-as much as I can tell from her at 2 months old.

God is Good though y'all.  He's blessed me so I'm ok for a little while longer.   Also, I know he will provide the right job/career situation.  It's been hard to even look for work while taking care of a Newborn full time, and trust the Devil is always busy in nasty people thwarting my efforts, but I am faithful in God's works and I know we will be ok.    In the meantime, I have to watch my finances.  Taking a car is even a luxury.

I admit, I miss my old life some days.   I miss being in the City and having my freedom to hit a happy hour or two.  (I have not had a single drop of hard liquor in almost a year-I just recently started allowing myself a glass of wine every now and then -and even then I sometimes water it down with water or juice).   I feel like my sole purpose is to be a human feeding machine some days.  I'm sleep deprived with no one in the household to watch her so I can sleep for a couple of hours.   I never WANTED to have a Baby and then have to rely on public transportation.   I mean taking my Baby on the Subway and exposing her to all those nasty germs was enough to give me a heart attack for the first time, but even worse is the feeling of carrying her down the perilous steps in her stroller (because of course the trains in my neighborhood don't have elevators), and I'm a natural -born klutz!  Oh Jesus, I felt like I was gonna faint taking her down there -but I did it and I made it safely there and back.  I don't know how Mother's do that everyday.  I seem to always have a bit of anxiety now-and it has to do with my overall situation.    The weight and responsibility of caring for this little person all on my own is crushing sometimes-but I will get it done and She's gonna be just fine!

At this present moment, she's a little sick and actually in my arms sleep as I'm typing this.   She caught my cold and her vaccinations have her feeling a little bit down.  I can tell you I've had a few bouts of crying already-I can't bear to see my Child sick or in pain-and the feeling of helplessness is so intense that it can drive you crazy.  Not all of us are Baby Whisperers-sometimes you just don't know what to do-I'm learning as I go, and I thank God for a few sage, experienced Mommy's in my circle.   I never knew how Type A I was until I had her!  The worst thing for a person like me is not knowing what to do or the fear of the unknown.    She's getting better though and seeing her smile and coo again make me feel better!

So there you have it folks.  My experience so far.  I'm all about the truth.  I'm not asking for your pity, or even your help.  I'm just expressing what I'm genuinely feeling as a New Mom.  I've always been annoyed with the pundits and an audience of people who only want you to know the good things.  Just BE REAL, sometimes knowing what to expect can help you to better prepare, or make different decisions.   I made the decision to become Clarke's Mom, because anything else would have been selfish for me to do.  This is a journey, and it is sometimes filled with rocky roads.  I talk about the rocky roads and the paved roads too.    We all have to walk our own path.  My journey is unique to me.  You can't criticize me for that although some may.    I'm ok and I have my little Girl to keep me on the path and to walk this journey with me.  We will learn and discover as we go, together.  



  1. Love it D! Your honest is always raw, real, and refreshing. xxo

  2. Dayna....I love that you allow yourself and, most importantly, remind your reading audience, that we are all human beings and it is okay to be such and it is even requested. As our social fabric has frayed and media distorts our perceptions, everyone wants to be flawless and infallible. It's a lot of pressure to be airbrushed. There are those of us who exhale when we read your posts even when it feels uncomfortable to be confronted with such honest dialogue....quietly, many people think..."wow...she's right" or "my goodness that is scary"...or "what would I or should I do" among many other self- reflective thoughts.

    I'm keeping you and Clarke in my prayers and remember that things will work themselves out because they usually do. Stay positive and keep writing!

    Love ya!

  3. alright here's the deal..I just turned 60 a few weeks ago and am recovering from neck surgery so I had some time to read your blog...and throughout my life I have had bugaboos and one of them is "I'm a single mother"...let's be clear you laid down with a man and got chose to have the child....religion didn't stop you...god won't get you a will by hitting the pavement...there is also something called forgiveness...not forgetting but forgiving...isn't that a BIG religious thing..I don't feel you have done this with her father...I hate it when women use the progeny to punish the father...this guy can't seem to do anything right ...he's broke right.. but he comes up with some dough and you bitch...he seems to want to be some kind of father but oh no he can't take the kid in the future..even though you complain you don't get enough sleep...your relationship sucked with him...doesn't mean he can't have a good one with his child...I'm not saying he needs to be praised for doing the I'm raising my kid like Chris Rock says...but you knew he was a broke SOB when you were with him..if you had stayed together you would be leaving the baby home for him to watch...Oh yeah he was verbal abusive but did you check him on it? quite honestly and truly he has just as much right to the child as you do..."you were gracious enough to let him see her 2X he came empty-handed" should encourage his visits...Clarke has a chose him...I know it may not be easy maybe that's when u should ask your god for strength Court jesters were very important to kingdoms and they usually survived and were good for a laugh...maybe you should stop judging based on your pain of a lost dream..I know you may get angry with me but I'm on Clarke's side...she should have love from all those willing to give it..maybe you could appreciate the very small things her father does for her..because you are coloring a bad picture for your child of their father...she might internalize your vibes and blame herself...these are the most formative are her guide...maybe both of you can get over a failed relationship because a living being came out of it. without each other you both wouldn't have my beautiful new niece....

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  4. Hi, I love your blog and wish you and your baby all the best in the world.

    Please look into putting google adsense ads on your blog. If you are going to blog at least make money doing it. Once you get an adsense account you can then monitise all your blogs. 2nd get google plus to promote your blogs as well as f/b and twitter. Make You a brand. You never know your blogs might give you a few extra bucks. :) There are plenty of people who've turned there blogging into $$$$.

    Please don't listen to people like the comment above this one. It's quite clear she can't relate. With a person like your baby daddy you need to do 2 things first is thank him for his sperm that made your beautiful daughter and shut the door never to be reopened. You owe him nothing. He walked away you should have left him there. Listen to your fear. It's there for a reason. I had a person just like that in my life. I know the fear you feel and understand exactly what it is like. Until you've had someone try to harm you while pregnant other people just can't relate. He wants to see her, too bad, neither of you need him. So he can get a tax credit. Please..
    Change your phone number, move, don't answer your door. You can't trust a person like that period. Don't believe me, watch the news. You need to take care you. You need to choose whats best for the both of you. Sure it's hard. Im always asking myself if I'm doing the right thing. You are strong. You are beautiful. You can do this. Your daughter will give you more love then any man ever could. When she tells you she loves you it's unconditional. You are educated, motivated, and are going to succeed. You have everything you've ever wanted even if you never knew you wanted it until it happened. Life doesn't always go the way we plan but sometimes it's the off road plans that are the most worth while.

    I wish you all the best... Ps. Get those ads up ASAP and happy blogging. Xoxo