And, that upsets me greatly.
I made this life change – this attempt at being a fabled Stay-At-Home-Mom – so I would have more time to devote to my children. So that I wouldn’t feel the stress and pull of work obligations. So that I’d have the freedom and flexibility to be with my kids when they need me the most. And, a bit more selfishly, so that I’d also have an opportunity to figure out some things for myself.
That’s the problem. Those moments of peace that I counted on don’t actually seem to exist.
I’m run ragged by the constant push and pull of this life that I have chosen. This life that I prayed for. This life that I sacrificed everything for. This life that, I know in my heart, others might see from the outside and want for themselves.
But, from inside the walls of my house, this existence isn't so enviable. The list of things that I must do each day – dress the kids, prepare and feed them three meals, take Lucy to pre-school or extra-curricular classes, play with the kids, find that lost toy, run errands, clean the house, wash the dishes, fold the laundry – just doesn’t end. On paper, it doesn’t really seem like much, but you’re not reading this with the accompanying soundtrack of crying, screaming, and general chaos. In my reality, it’s overwhelming and exhausting. It’s thankless and monotonous. And, it doesn’t take into consideration the things that I want to do or that I need for myself.
The conflicting need to give everything of yourself to your children, while simultaneously trying not to entirely lose yourself in them, is the great paradox of motherhood. And, right now, I feel a bit lost. Without knowing who I am, I don’t know how I can raise my children to be self-aware and self-assured.
So, in an effort to retain my sanity and sense of self, I’m going to try to carve out some time for me. I’m going to put aside those feeling that I’m selfish or somehow “less than” for needing space from the incessant demands of motherhood. Because really, I already know that a spit-up covered, short-tempered, and easily frustrated mom simply isn’t who I want to be or who my kids need. I am not trying to be Pinterest perfect, I'm just looking for peace of mind.
My ultimate goal is to figure out what I need to be happy – simply said and challenging to actually do. Maybe that means that I will write more. Maybe it means I will work more. Maybe it means I will nap more. I don’t know yet. But, I do know that I will post what I discover here. (And, I hope I’ll have your support – my beloved tens of readers – along the way.)