Wednesday, August 27, 2008

I didn't have my A game today

I would not make a good single parent. I tip my hat to those single parents out there, because holy crap is it hard being alone 24/7. Now granted, unless I came into some serious money, I wouldn't be home all day long as a single parent, because I would have to be out of the home working to pay for food, and clothes, and other such sundries. I just didn't have my A game today. I didn't know how to occupy the twins so that they wouldn't climb the couches and run, or open up drawers and slam them shut. I missed my older kids, even though a part of me was glad they weren't home. It took me all day to empty the dishwasher, because when the twins did finally nap it was all I could do to make myself a sandwich and watch some tv. I never turn the tv on during the day for myself. I have one more full day alone, with all four kids, and I have absolutely no idea how I am going to manage.

I never thought I would say that I don't like being a stay at home parent. It was something I wished for so often when I was working and hated my job and just wanted to be with my baby girl. My mom stayed home until I was 12 and old enough to watch my brother for a bit after school and I really loved it. I just don't know why I don't feel that way about it all now. I am certain that a lot of my issues with being at home has to do with the age differences of the kids. Only the twins are in the same place, and of course that is a busy place for me and I don't get to give the other kids any kind of time or attention. I see those words, I understand them, but there isn't anything I can DO about it. I want to enjoy my chaotic life, but instead it makes me cringe and want to lash out. I want peace and quiet and when I get it, I don't know what to do with it. There are days when leaving it all behind and never coming back never sounded so good.

It's sad for me to realize that what I thought was my dream isn't working out as well as I'd hoped. I know that's why I butt heads with the kids so often. I'm not mad at them, but mad at myself that I don't get to give them the best of me. I don't know where that person went, or who she even is anymore. That is so unfair to my children. I just want to change things, yet I don't even know where to begin. I'm not asking for the perfect life; I'm just asking for something better than this.


creative kerfuffle said...

oh K--i'm sending you a huge hug. seriously, not that it makes it any better, but you are NOT alone. (read through blog land and you'll see). i have days where i am SO very jealous of SAHMs, i really am. i realize it is incredibly hard, but each side (working in or out of the house) has it's pros/cons. this will not be your life forever. in a few years all the kids will be in school. i don't suppose something like mommy's morning out or something similar is an option even if only for a few hours a week?

Robyn said...

I feel for you -- and think you're very brave to admit out loud what I'm sure other mothers feel, but don't say.

I work full-time and have since Bear was 4 months old. Every monday morning, I'm happy he goes back to daycare -- and so is he. It gives us the opportunity to miss each other, to be excited to see one another at the end of the day and for him to play and do messy things I wouldn't have him do at home.

Good luck in figuring it all out and if you decide that being a SAHM isn't for you,just know that plenty of kids turned out better than "ok" while mommy was working all day. It's the quality of the time you spend w/your kids, not the quantity.

AndreAnna said...

You know where I personally am on the whole working mother thing. I work because it makes me a better me, which makes me a better mother. Then again, I have a very flexible job where I can work from home some days, and I have an unbelievable childcare situation.

But I truly believe some people force themselves into roles in their lives that make them unhappy because they think it's the "right thing to do" when in the end, it causes more trauma. Being unhappy is permeable. People feel it. Kids feel it. Babies feel it.

I just want to give you a big hug. You're not alone and you are a great mother and I truly believe you'll figure out a way to find happiness and balance.

Thia said...

Hugs! I think many of us have been there. It's hard to see any way out of it. Stuff to think on: can you talk to your dh about this? Is there any way to take a day a month to get out on your own, either shopping or taking a class or something? What time do the kids go to bed? can you get some time after that? Not saying that all these things will work, they're just ideas that may or may not work. Often, in the pit, we can't see the way out, so I was just trying to suggest some stuff. When I get down there, you can bounce this back to me, lol.

Astarte said...

No one is at their best all the time, especially when that time is so soon after you've been sick AND now you're alone, too!!!! Don't be too hard on yourself. Kids aren't as demanding of us as we are of ourselves, at least not in the same ways. Your mom probably even has a different point of view on what was going on when you were little than you do.

I think anyone who says that they 100% love being at home is lying. I mean, being at home is great, but it's really, really hard, too, and no one loves every choice they've ever made every minute of every day. There are days when I wish I worked somewhere, anywhere, just so I could have a conversation.

Have you looked into any MOPS groups or anything?

Dana said...

As someone who has been in both positions (stay-at-home mom and working mom), perhaps you'd be willing to share your wisdom on Mommy 4-1-1! ;)