Thursday, November 18, 2010

Mommy, dearest

I have dropped the ball. I have dropped it and it has rolled into the gutter and on down the street into traffic. I have lost the ball. I have lost it so completely that I'm not even sure that I had it in the first place.

I don't know what I've been doing with myself. Actually, I do know but I'm terribly ashamed. I have been wasting time. Lots and lots of time. I have not been doing anything of any value or meaning. I stay up way too late, I get up way too late, I feed the kids, I break up fights, I feed 'em again, I break up more fights, I feed 'em some more, I break up the last fights I'm willing to put up with and then the kids go to bed. Of course, there are some smatterings of happy times in there. I play with cars, I color with the boys, I tickle them, I read stories but I know deep in my heart that I am falling drastically short of being the mother they deserve. Ben needs to see a speech therapist and I'm positive it's my fault that he's not speaking at an age-appropriate level. I have tried on several occasions to sit down with him and teach him sight words and how to write the alphabet but he gets frustrated and I get frustrated and then we give up. I shouldn't give up.

We are all terribly tired of each other. I know that it is completely horrible for me to say that I grow tired of my kids, but it happens. It's very difficult to converse with them.

Ethan: Mama!!!
Me: Ethan?
Ethan: Thomas!
Me: Yes! That's your Thomas train.
Ben: Mama! Mama look at me!
Me: Ben, please don't jump on the couch.
Ethan: Mama!
Ben: Look at me!
Ethan: Mama!!
Ben: Look at me!
Ethan: MAMA!!!!!!!!!
Me: Ben, please stop climbing on the back of the couch!
Ethan: MAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Me: What, Ethan?!
Ethan: Thomas!

And so on and so forth. Ben tells me on a fairly regular basis that he wants me to go away and prefers to be with daddy. He also told me that he'd like a new mommy. Ethan tries to hit me in the face when I refuse to connect his trains together after I've already done so about two dozen times in the last five minutes. Having kids has taught me that I'm not as patient as I thought I was. It's a pretty nasty revelation. I'm basically a jerk. I love my kids so much but I'm having a lot of trouble with putting my own ego and my own needs away so that I can focus on my boys as much as I should. I have read so many quotes regarding how children are supposed to bring the best qualities out of their parents but Ben and Ethan pretty often get the worst of me. As I am losing my cool with them, there's a voice in my head that tries to get me to take deep breaths and calm down but the giant flailing octopus of anger gets its way most of the time.

To make matters worse, Ben is turning into a master when it comes to guilt trips. I will be at the end of my admittedly short rope and both boys will be climbing all over me, screaming in my ear, pulling on my clothes, and anything else they can think of to clamor for my attention. I'll be trying to read or hold a thought in my head while Ben calls "mama" with increasing volume and intensity. "What?!?!" I'll snap. And then Ben will look at me with wide blue eyes and his lower lip will tremble and he'll say "I just wanted to say I love you."

I can't escape the feeling that I need therapy and/or more medication to deal with this side of myself that I can't stand but takes the reigns so very often. And I also can't escape the feeling that I'm the world's biggest moron being this surprised that parenting is, you know, hard and stuff.

1 comment:

Kristin said...

Oh,Sarah Jane. There are so many times that you speak what I hold silent in my heart for fear that if anyone else should hear it, they would take my little tomentors away. I think that lonliness is one of the biggest unspoken factors in mommyhood. No one ever told me about the times that I would think about leaving my dear baby girl on the front steps of the fire station/police station/church (pick one) just so that I could have a break, maybe some sleep or possibly a meal with out some one wanting something or needing something of me. I had a ton of dark lonely feelings that I just knew, if I let them out or told someone, they would take my baby away.
Much later, I found out that these feelings I was having, other moms were having them too.

Why had no one ever told me that motherhood was THIS hard? This unrelenting? That you put more pressure on yourself to "perform" as a mommy for fear other mommies will talk? It's a dirty mommy secret. You join the club all wide eyes, excitement, diapers, booties and parenting books firmly in hand, but then they don't tell you the rules or the bylaws. You feel judged and underappriceated by your children's father and your other mommy "friends" for not doing it "right"...But what is "right"? Do we ever know? I don't think so. My kids love me even when I am wearing my really big bitch pants.
I would like you to know that I am a yeller, an evil eye-er, a threatener, a growl under my breath-er....I do all sorts of things that June Cleaver or Doris Day would have NEVER done, but they had stylists, stage hands and the kids weren't really theirs, so eff 'em. What the heck do they know about modern life anyway?
I am rambling and I will stop now but before I go, I want to say: I love you, I appreciate you and you are doing an amazing job being Sarah Jane the Mommy. Just know that you aren't alone, we all have those feelings about dropping the ball.
Just remember when your boys win the Super Bowl, before they say they are going to Disneyland, they always wave and say "Hi Mom!". ♥