I don’t know how it happens. It’s like I go from 0 to 60 in a matter of moments. Everything is going fine, I’m handling the day with O. I should say, enjoying the day with O. Ok, I didn’t sleep great the past couple of nights, but I’m tough. Then I navigate family stuff i.e. dysfunction, over the phone while I’m trying to get some exercise by taking a walk. Then, I make baby food while I figure out what we will have for dinner. Then I field emails and calls to make our crazy (at the moment) life actually function. Add laundry, keeping our house show ready for prospective buyers, throw in a trip to the post office, a stop at the grocery store and a diaper run for fun. Then O decides not to take a nap, but rather stand in his crib crying until Mommy comes in to save him. And every whine and whimper sends my head spinning further and further into a place I don’t know how to return from sometimes.
By the time my husband gets home, I’m feeding the overtired wonder boy in his high chair, while he wears some of his meal, as he has now taken to swatting the spoon away and then crying because there is no food in his mouth. Of course, I have a large glass of wine beside me. I swear, O will be a toddler able to open a bottle of wine like a professional sommelier and make a killer dirty martini to rival Dean Martin. He’s seen it done enough. I look like I’ve been through a prison camp. A camp where they dress you in yoga pants and make you wear your hair in a ponytail everyday. My husband asks me if I’m ok? He is truly concerned. He takes over feeding our child. And all I feel is guilt. Like I have somehow lost the battle of the day.
I then don’t know how to come back? Has that ever happened to any of you? It’s like I don’t know how to wipe the day away and start over. The guilt of getting frustrated or of wasting the gift of the day stays with me. I can’t imagine how my husband could love me. I’m so so far away from what he signed up for. And it seems I can’t handle even the simplest task. I can’t even keep it together as I write this. Thankfully, I know this too shall pass and I will recover and become “me” again. But in the midst of the whirlwind I seem unrecognizable, even to myself.
When I was dealing with postpartum baby blues, I’d often have the “drive away” fantasy. I didn’t know how many women had this fantasy until I started reading other women’s blogs. I’d see myself getting into my Kia and just driving away. To nowhere. Just to breathe. Just to feel the wind on my face. I didn’t know how far I’d go… I always planned on coming back, but in my mind it was the perfect escape. Now my escape fantasy involves a bath and a nice hotel room. I fantasize about sleep like it is some elusive unattainable thing. When I start fantasizing more frequently, I know I am approaching my breaking point. I am getting close to crashing into the wall.
I am not a super woman. I am just a woman. I’m trying. Everyday I try. That counts, right? My number one concern is that I do right by O. That I give him everything I can, everyday. That I teach him what I know and more, to make him a decent kind loving person. But inevitably, there are days when you are at the end of your rope, and you wind up teaching him something negative. A curse word you said out of frustration (it only has to happen once) …or how to make a killer dirty martini. How can you be the perfect mom at every moment?? If you have the answer, let me know. Until then, I’ll be putting one foot in front of the other. Occasionally, I’ll take a step backwards…because I’m only human.