Being a mom is a much bigger struggle than anyone has ever told me. You love your kid (or kids) so much and at times it feels like your heart is just going to explode with the pure volume of love. Even when they’re acting like fools, not doing what they’re supposed to, and driving you up the wall you can’t help but love them so much. After a long day they have exhausted every resource that you have, but you know that you will be checking on them to make sure that they’re all right and warm under their covers.
Unconditional love was a nice idea before you had kids. Now you know it intimately. No matter what happens, no matter what they do, you will still love them as much as you do today. When they go to their first day of school you can’t breathe because you miss them. When you gladly send them to school, you are excited to see them later in the day.
The Flip Side
As much as you love them though there’s a flip side, isn’t there? At times there will be utter disgust and hatred. Not for your child but for the things that they do or say. You’ve seen this kid grow and mature and you know what he or she is capable of – greatness. For some reason your child doesn’t seem to want to grow into their potential. Maybe they act out of spite, or misbehave just because it’s fun… but is actually a very bad or dangerous idea.
His or her teacher might send you notes from school to let you know that they are not doing as they’ve been told. The kid’s not living up to the school’s expectations, whether they be academic or behavioral. Maybe your child does fine at school, but constantly fights with siblings. Your child has difficulty maintaining friendships or making them in the first place. The only reprieve that you get is during the school day or after the child is fallen asleep. You still love them so incredibly much…but liking your child (or hating their choices) is difficult sometimes.
It’s exhausting and anyone who says that parenthood isn’t either has an exceptionally well-behaved balance child or they are lying. I’d put my money on the lying. The struggle starts from the moment you wake up until the moment that you pass out from exhaustion. Even when you aren’t actively taking care of your child that child is on your mind. You stress and worry about what you can do better or what they need to do next in order to succeed. In order to be healthy. Able to survive without you someday.
See? I’m not a perfect mom and I don’t think that there really is one because I’ve been looking. I am the mom you see crying dropping off my kids. Why? I am completely worn down. I’ll also be the mom who picks up her kids with a huge smile excited to see them after school this afternoon.
Coping With It
I know that I’m not the only one that feels like this. I’m still struggle to lose weight and get healthy. I can’t drink alcohol so that’s not an option (not that it’s the healthiest way to deal with stress). If it were legal to smoke marijuana then guess what? After my kids went to bed I would be lighting it up. Sometimes it’s hard to remember that at the end of the day we’re still people; we still need to relax and come back down to earth to breathe.
This is the first post that I’ve written from the cab of my truck but it probably won’t be the last. If you’re in the trenches like me, and feeling inadequate and helpless in every way… know that you aren’t. I’m here with you and I know that together we will be able to not only survive this… But help our children thrive.
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