The Twilight Zone

Well, well, well…it appears I have missed November’s letter and am on the fast track to missing December’s as well.

Where have I been?  I have been in a hectic and chaotic, yet strangely peculiar place that can only be described as some sort of twilight zone. A place where days (and months) blend together, where the joys of parenting are equally matched by the frustrations and where the extreme demands of our livelihood are always just out of reach. Yes the clean and dirty clothes scatter among even the strangest of places and innocent toys turn into midnight landmines. Chicken nuggets here, chicken nuggets there, mandarin oranges everywhere.  There is an angry teething one and a half year old, an independent three year old, a strange dog carrying around someone’s underwear, somewhere there is a ten year old and possibly a husband as well. The mornings begin around 4:30 and the day closes well after 10 p.m. Where am I? I have no clue…probably running around with a crooked pony tail and two-day-old leggings.  Yes, two days.  

 Don’t ask me what normal is.

wpid-photogrid_1418848951277.jpg

Yeah right.  My dryer says “regular,” and I don’t even use that setting.  Normal is almost laughable in this house.  I had an unmarried, childless girlfriend say, “I don’t know how you do it. I don’t know how you do it all…you’re like Super Mom!”  No, no, no, my dear.  I am indeed not Super Mom.  I don’t know how I do it either, but there are a lot of people like me out there.  Now if I am anything, I am more like Crazy Mom on some sort of hyperactive drugs.  Do people still do drugs?  I wouldn’t know out here in the twilight zone. No I am not Super Mom.  I am just little ‘ol me doing the best I can in this crazy, crazy beautiful life; and I am definitely not winning any “Mother of the Year” awards anytime soon.

But this is what happens, right?  We grow up, meet the love of our life, get married, have babies and skip through three years of life unknowingly, raise wonderful children and somehow maintain a sense of who we are through all of it.  Or do we?  Do we really know who we are in those early mothering years?  Do we really stay true to ourselves after marriage and kids?

Of course, as parents, we make natural sacrifices for our children.   But do we ever make a point to get back what we let go of…no matter how big or small.  Let’s not downplay those sacrifices–they are a big deal. Yet there is this stigma that doesn’t let us talk about how hard it can be to make those sacrifices. There is an equal amount of pressure on moms and dads to work hard, stay healthy, be fantastic parents while being admirably in love and maintain composure like politicians all at once.  Ick.  I don’t care for that.

At what point do we give so much of ourselves before we end up hurting ourselves?  Now before anyone comes to slay the dragon, know this:  I would absolutely do anything for my kids and my husband.  I live them, breathe them and love them endlessly.  See here is proof…

Credit:  Kelsey Jean Photography

Credit: Kelsey Jean Photography

Nice touch, right?  

But there are definitely days, and many of us mamas know what it is like to put ourselves last.  We have to know first, that it is totally okay to feel frustration and defeat.  Second, that we owe it to ourselves to do something just for us.  And that doing that is totally fine!

I feel like I am at rally full of woman (and men, too), all run down and tired and there I am like “If you hear me, put ya’ hands up!”  And then we have this big epiphanic moment.  

Good lord.  I really have lost it.

Hey, I get it.  I am just here to say that I certainly get it.  And kudos to those who have it all together, but here in the twilight zone I am losing it. But I am learning.  I am learning the ways of the curve balls and the change ups.  I am getting better at taking breaks and finding time for me. Yes, that’s right…ME TIME.  Because I deserve it and so does everyone else.

Someday when time and life allows me to express and live the dreams I have for myself, I am going to do just that.  And that is definitely something to hold onto.

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One thought on “The Twilight Zone

  1. You are definitely not alone – you and me (I know it is grammatically correct to say I, but go with it for the sake of flow) and Rod Serling are all hanging out (alone) together. The one thing that I can say is different, though, is that I did get to the point of giving so much that I hurt myself and then went a lot further. It took a serious and close brush with something I don’t like thinking about before my eyes opened enough to see how far I had gone, and how much I really had to lose, and I am still paying the consequences while also trying to find my way back to a semblance of balance. Even finding balance is hard, though, because it is both weird to try to create that authentic me time (apparently, going to the grocery store alone once a week wasn’t actually the thing that feeds my soul…whoda thunk, right?) and terrifying to wonder if I am overstepping and taking too much time/energy/mental space away from my husband and kids. They have lost just as much as I did through this ordeal.

    The worst part of the crooked ponytail, the chicken nuggets, the piles of laundry, and the two-day leggings/BO (I’ll just go ahead and say it ;} ) is the self-doubt. Nobody can be Super-Mom – though I bet that you have tried as much as I have! – but Facebook sure makes it look like our high-school best frenemies, every single one of our cousins, and the other classroom moms sure are managing it!

    I get it, too. May you find strength in sisterhood, even from afar.

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