It all started off normal enough. My son comes barreling into my room and slams the door behind him, sending my still-sleeping brain into panic mode. I say good morning, we have a quick cuddle, then he gets the dogs all riled up for breakfast.
Ok, ok, I’m getting up.
The new puppy started chewing his paws non stop and just the very sound of it was driving me nuts. Then my thoughts invade me- I need to check him for allergies, change his food, talk to the vet so that the chewing stops.
Oh yeah, that reminds me, I need to schedule my son a dentist appointment.
Which leads to the reminder that I haven’t called his regular doctor about his behavioral consult. For some reason my son is speaking at max volume today, Why?
I throw on whatever yoga pants and workout shirt are on top of the pile of clean laundry I have yet to put away. Then the mad-dash to leave for school begins.
The dogs are fed and walked, breakfast made (oops I ran out of eggs and milk yesterday and forgot to get more), lunch packed, a million random questions answered (I’m not really sure why the Roomba goes back to the same spot it keeps getting stuck in, honey, but yes, I did know that we should stay away from lava and erupting volcanoes), and into the car only 15 minutes later than intended.
The questions continue on the drive to school, and by the time we get there I’m exhausted.
And it’s only 8:45am.
A day like today is one where I had visions of myself as a raving madwoman yelling at the top of her lungs for no apparent reason… and it all came crashing down on me.
The mountains of laundry and dishes that never seem to end. The bills, the doctor’s appointments, the errands, the part-time job, the meals to make, the incessant whining. I felt the weight of judgment and my own self-doubt.
I only have one child, why is this so freaking hard?
Time to be realistic. The laundry and dishes aren’t that bad, why is it stressing me out?
I actually love my job, so why do I feel like I should be justifying my contribution to my family?
Is my tour as a stay-at-home mom over?
Can I really not handle this any more?
Back to making a doctor’s appointment for the behavioral issues. Now a call to the dentist to address that lower tooth coming in wrong. I can get those both done on the drive to work. Yeah, that will work. Then I will have 3 hours to get something accomplished before the school pickup, afternoon doctor appointment, homework, and dinner rush.
So many questions are running through my mind, on top of the 30 item to-do list. I feel on-edge and I can’t put my finger on why. Nothing is different today than it was yesterday, so why the heck is it suddenly all too much to take?
The usual things don’t help today. No amount of running, walking, yoga, meditation, venting to a friend, massages, pedicures, or shopping will take away the anxiety.
And while a bottle of wine sounds amazing, it is probably not a good idea either. Some alone time? Ha! The world seems to think stay-at-home moms have a ton of it. Truth is, I had more alone time when I was working full-time than I do now.
This is no way a complaint. Every other day I go through this whirlwind emotional rollercoaster without a second thought. I don’t need a pity party, I understand that I am truly a lucky woman to be able to have this time with my one and only child before he doesn’t want me around anymore.
But seriously. This mom has had it today. And, even worse, she doesn’t know what to do about it.
So…I went through the motions of the day and in the end, I put myself in timeout. Although today was really hard to stay the rational, sane adult, I decided to tell my son after school that I was having a rough day and needed a little more patience from him.
I started the dinner that I knew he would decide not to eat. “I understand you don’t like spaghetti tonight son, but two weeks ago you ate three bowls.”
Then, it was bath time (with 10 minutes to wash the dishes in silence!), then a book, and then bed. I made it through. I adulted- and I want an award. My son was clean, fed, and sleeping like a baby.
While I try to be the best mom for my son, today wasn’t that day. I was really close to losing it today. There is no way all of us moms are on point all the time, regardless of how many kids we have, whether or not our work is outside the home, or any of the other million ways we find to classify ourselves.
Hopefully tomorrow will be better. For now, my child is asleep and I just poured a glass of wine and sat down to Netflix and chill, which will realistically put me to sleep.
As I drift off, I will also try to remind myself that I am enough, that I do enough, and that one bad day does not define me as a mom or a person. Do me a favor, and do the same when you are having a day like mine?