I might be an emotional eater . . . and other things I'm worried about

Loveys, I'm having a rough morning. Bear with me. Today was Ashtyn's first day of second grade. That alone gives me anxiety. Really.

Now it wasn't as bad as her first day of kindergarten (where I wept in the hallway and Jeff had to pray over me in the parking lot), but it was rough. First of all, I'm just being real here, I'm not completely sold on her class. I think maybe it's not a good fit. I've talked to the principal and he's asked me to give it a week or two and then we'll reevaluate. So we're doing that. But going into her classroom today (and meeting her teacher for the first time! Do they not let you meet them ahead of time or what?), I felt all my anxiety well upside me. I like structure. This classroom is not about structure. The teacher (who is very nice) tells us that Ashtyn can sit wherever she feels like sitting. This is literal. There are couches, a pallet on the floor, yoga balls, high top chairs--she can sit wherever. Okay. Jeff gives me a look like, Hm. She can go wherever the wind leads her. Ash is getting quieter and quieter during this process. She's lost a bit of that excitement she had when getting to put on her new backpack. Of course she's nervous. I would be too. (Though there were lots of kids bouncing on yoga balls, who didn't seem nervous. One mom gave her daughter a look and said, You're not sitting on that thing all day. Find a desk. My kind of mom.)

I know it's the first day. I'll give it a week and see where we are. But for someone who likes structure, and who feels that her daughter works well in structured situations, this doesn't feel great to me. Thankfully there are options.

Still, I have anxiety.

Which means when we leave, I decide I'm super hungry and go to McDonalds for a breakfast sandwich. This ends up putting me into an emotional tailspin. Over the past many years, there have been tons of mornings where I drop Ash off at school, run through a drive-thru for breakfast, then head to work.

Today I did not head to work after. I came home. Again, I'll be honest. It felt distressing.

And I was still hungry. One bowl of cereal later, I did not feel better. So I had two mini-cupcakes. And now I'm worried that I'm an emotional eater. I've never thought about it before. But what if I am?

I'm worried about Ashtyn, and I miss work. I think this is the first day I've missed work. I was sitting at the table, feeding Lily, noticing that my floor needs to be swept. This distressed me again because I sweep this floor every day. I'm thinking to myself, Is this what I'll do every day? Sweep and do another load of laundry?

I'm not sure what I'll do every day. And I've found that it can be a loaded question for some moms. You know the ones--they are very offended if someone asks what they do all day long. Even if you really do want to know because you're new to the club and you need some ideas! Because sweeping and laundry are okay but not my favorite. But picture hands on hips and a "What do you think I do?" (I don't know! That's why I asked! Angry elf!)

Okay, my anxiety is getting worse. Let's breathe.

I don't care how messy the floor is, I'm not sweeping it.

(Until later. Let's be real. I hate my floor being messy.)

All I know is that I'm emotional. And I have anxiety.

So I ask Jeff if this is my new life. Sweeping. He laughs. Then he says to me, "Bran. You're a writer. That's what you do and who you are. So write."

I sort of want to cry. I'm so thankful that that was his answer. That he knows me. I don't want to be an emotional eater. Maybe it's just today and how I'm feeling. If I go to McDonalds again tomorrow, I will need an intervention.

I want to have confidence that my daughter's in a great class, where she's happy and learning. She's everything, you know. So, we'll see how this goes. I'm going to be intentional about school being a good experience for her.

I want to do more than sweep every day. Really, it's true. I missed work today. I think I'll check in with Marianne and see if we can meet up next week. I need to talk books and editing and writing and all that good stuff with an editor friend.

It's been a rough start for me today.

I'm a little unsteady. My daughter's in second grade, loveys. And her mother needs a hug.


  1. Oh girl! This post made me want to reach through internet land and hug you. Ash will be alright and she will give you cues whether she is happy and comfortable in that type of setting or not. I was/am a teacher in my former life before becoming a stay at home mom and lots of students so so well bein able to move around while leaning. You may be surprised, but as a parent I totally et your concern. Hang in there, keep happy thoughts, but share those concerns and do what you know is best for your babe! And as for the eating...it was her first day so I say you are all good!!


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