In the ebbs and tides of motherhood I have definitely been sucked down by an undertow. I keep trying to pinpoint the source of my current down-and-out view on life. Is it the winter and the cold? Is it Jordon's long hours? Is it all of the things that I have to do? So much in fact, that I can't manage to do any of them well? Maybe that's what is bothering me. My inability to do one thing perfect, let alone several.
Whatever it is, it makes me feel alone. I glue on that perma-happy face, I try to "fake it 'till I make it," I hope that if I act one way, my mind and body will follow. Sometimes this works. Lately it hasn't.
I just brought the boys in from out front where they were playing with the neighbor kids. Their mom was out blowing the leaves in her yard and manicuring her trees. I felt a sense of shame at the shamble that is our front lawn. She asked me how the baby was. Good, of course. Wonderful in fact. She is my joy. She asked about the boys. So fantastic! Growing like weeds, they get along so well. Braedon is starting Kindergarten next year! She asked me how I am doing. I hesitated. Fake it 'till I make it, I reminded myself...
Instead, something overcame me and I blurted out those shameful words not so well. I went on to tell her about the teething and the lack of sleep, the pressure of picking a good school for Braedon and my frustration over our tight wallet. Shut up, I kept telling myself, you sound like a sniveling failure. But I didn't shut up. I kept going. I don't have time for hobbies, I miss my husband, I don't fit in with the pre-school moms. Then I topped it off with a "you know how it goes." Wtf? Where did you pull that one from? What if she DOESN'T know how it goes?
"OH yes," she sprawled theatrically, "I know how it is! Some days I think I just plain suck at this parenting thing."
Huh. Yeah, that about sums it up.
I am still overwhelmed, over-tired, and overworked. But I somehow feel a little lighter... and a lot less alone.