|Pic stolen from here.|
But, today, I just can't find it in me to rejoice in the chaos and hard work of parenting. It's been a hard couple of days and to be honest my priorities right now are to keep my head above water, make sure some form of food is thrown at the kids roughly around mealtimes and get. them. into. bed. at the end of the day.
It's not all roses.
Way back when Eden was a newborn, I became spectacularly messy and depressed, and, when it became evident that all those 'new mother hormones' just weren't going to go away, I was put onto antidepressants and told I had PND. In retrospect, I'm pretty sure that old black dog was with me prior to that, when Miya was a new baby. It probably never went away.
The tablets worked, and have allowed me to live a pretty normally functioning life since then. I think I will always tend towards the dramatic and emotional, it's how I'm wired. But my emotions, by and large, no longer make me non-functioning and unhinged. I don't tend to worry anymore about things like whether or not I will get through the day without hurting the kids, or driving into a tree, or jumping on a plane and escaping, creating a new life for myself.
Every now and then, though, I (and most other parents, I'm sure) have a patch of a few days where life is hard. Harder than it should be. Bleak, even. It feels, on these days, like every word out of my mouth is snapped. Or like the word 'Mum' is a screwdriver to my head. Or like everyone needs me, and I have nothing to give. I resent how dependent the kids are, how demanding they can be. I begin to see dirt everywhere, and get so angry at everyone around me for making my world so dirty. I sweep the floors up to ten times a day, but can't fathom going into the kitchen to put dinner on.
On these days, it feels like I don't want to be a parent anymore.
On these days, we eat takeout. The TV stays on far too long. The kids sense something is amiss, and swing between making hay while mum is curled up in bed, and trying to put their world back together. Miya tells me she loves me a lot, or that she will help me clean the house, or asks me to play with her, nervously. Eden has learned to say, "Sorry, Mum!", very quickly, when I snarl about the many little things that are irritating me. They fight constantly, as the balance is shifted and they try to figure out the rules, and where they each stand.
This is not the childhood I imagined myself building for them. If I am being fair to myself, it is only every now and then that the dark cloud comes over me, but I hate watching them compensate for my demeanour, or seeing their emotions begin to reflect my own volatile state.
There's really no way to wrap up a post like this in a positive way. This is where I'm at. Tomorrow, I may be feeling different. I may wake up and everything will have a different light thrown over it. I may feel up to the task again. And, if not tomorrow, I know it will happen eventually. It always does. But, for now, it's all about the sorrow of not being the mother I want to be, 100% of the time, and the sadness, and the shame, of exposing my children to this darkness, and requiring from Nath all the things I am not able to give.