Two mornings ago I couldn’t make a cup of coffee without having a fight with my nearly four year old and huffing at my 15-month old. Not that “make a cup of coffee” is as simple as it sounds, of course. Both children require a presence on the counter, both think they have a job to do in the task and none of us were in good moods.
The entire day was as rotten as the beginning of it. It was decidedly one of those “I never should have become a parent because I am either unfit or uninterested” type of days.
Today we’ve had a dance party and bacon.
Maybe I’m the only mom that cooking breakfast and lunch is the hallmark of a low guilt day, but probably not. It’s not just that the quality of food is better, it’s that I’m present and we’re cooking and somehow they sit at the table and eat and what kind of magic is this? I am on my game! It’s a feeling of the day itself that bests the feeling of “yes, yes, you’re hungry, here’s a pouch and a slice of cheese.”
Whatever it is, it’s rare. We’re pouch and cheese people.
Today we had bacon though. And a dance party. Nailing this morning stuff.
I used to wonder if I was the only person sending this sort of crazed inconsistent message to my kids about the quality of life. Because apparently we’re supposed to be this rock solid, unwavering foundation in our kids’ lives you know. That is consistent and predictable and steady in the face of their raging emotional development and self-centered age appropriate neediness.
And I don’t know if it’s because I have my own mental illness that I bounce around a bit more often between the really balanced mom of awesomeness and the ‘life is stretching me’ mom of passableness and the ‘I should really get a sitter because I’m going to seriously start saying shit I might regret’ mom of awfulness, or if that’s just normal. I’m trying not to ask questions I’m incapable of answering.
The point is, I used to think I was the only inconsistent mom, having moods and days and realities that conflicted with my kids’ needs for perfect calm. And then I realized other moms were on the Internet talking about life being…different than that, harder than that. As I stopped assuming that I was this great anomaly of awfulness, my eyes were opened to the fact that there are several other bloggers and writers who talk openly about their depression and other diagnosis’ and the impact it has on their lives, often as mothers.
I am so grateful when people share their story to a public hungry to know that we are not the only ones.
Are you sharing your story yet?
When we share our stories people begin to feel connected. Too often we stay quiet out of the fear of being judged and miss an opportunity to be understood. When we stay quiet in our struggles we are robbing the people around us a chance to feel less isolated in theirs; we leave people alone with their fears. Everyone wants to know they are not alone.