Originally posted 4/16/2020.
Let me paint a picture for you…
I’m sitting at the dining room table eating grilled cheese and tomato soup for lunch with my two- and four-year-old after a morning of trying to work my full-time job from my kitchen island while simultaneously entertaining my children, basically just making sure they are safe and alive. Mid-bite, I burst into tears. The kids both stop talking (their “talking” is honestly more like screaming) and stare at me, bewildered.
Are they shocked I’m crying? I know the four-year-old isn’t, but I’m sure it seems weird to my two-year-old. My kids are in difficult stages as it is., testing their limits and learning what they can get away with. There are constant attitudes, eye rolls, and fights in our house. Attitudes and eye-rolls towards me, fights between the two of them. Constantly.
It’s only Tuesday, and I’m crying, feeling defeated, in front of my children.
Like many others during this unprecedented time, I’m home working my full-time job and my kids’ childcare facility is closed. Since my husband is in law enforcement, he is an essential worker and is still reporting for duty. I’m only slightly jealous he gets to leave the house for human interaction on a regular basis…only slightly. My only solace is knowing I’m not the only one going through this currently, and the fact that I’m lucky to work for an incredible company that is supportive and understanding is a huge relief.
But this. is. freaking. hard.
I am not cut out to be a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM), and I sure as hell am not cut out to be BOTH a SAHM AND a full-time working mom at the same time.
Please don’t get me wrong here, I love my kids, I love spending time with them, but the fact that there are no boundaries between work-life and mom-life is chaotic. I can’t pay attention to my kids’ needs. I can’t play with them the way they want me to. I can’t hold them constantly. The list goes on, and it makes me feel like I am the worst mom in the world. In fact, my super sweet princess of a daughter has even told me that I am “the worst mom ever,” she “doesn’t like me,” AND that I’m “the meanest mom ever!”
The thing is, I know she doesn’t mean those things, but it can be hard to not take it seriously when you’re already thinking the same things about yourself. As I was crying during lunch, unable to form words, both my kids got up from their seats, came over, and wrapped their arms around me. They told me they love me, and that I’m the “best mom ever!”
It was nice, but, again…this. is. freaking. hard.
I know, I probably shouldn’t have cried in front of my kids, but at least there was peace and quiet for a solid two minutes. I’m kidding. Kind of.
The worst part of all of this is that I know I’m not being the best mom lately. I’m not being the best wife, the best employee, or the best me for myself. I can’t give anything I love 100%, and it only makes the guilt compound.
I’m trying to do things to stay sane like getting outside, working out and practicing self-care, but all of that is only going so far right now. I’ve lost any semblance of patience that I had (which wasn’t much), I’ve raised my voice more than I would like to admit, and I’ve cried oh so many tears.
The thing is…I’m a happy person! I really, truly am a happy person to my core. But this whole working from home while watching my kids and not having outside human interaction for almost two months has got me on a crazy tidal wave of emotions that I cannot seem to get under control.
So, if you’re a parent out there who is on the struggle bus like me, just know you are not alone. Every day we are in this is another day closer to normalcy. We will get through this. And let’s hope when we are on the other side that we won’t take for granted everything we are so desperately craving right now.
I would like to add that I am extremely grateful that my husband and I both still have our jobs, we have a roof over our heads and are healthy. Just because I’m feeling all of the things above does not mean that I am ungrateful. This is simply my little corner to share my thoughts and feelings, and that’s exactly what this post is about.