Dear Cranky Mom!
Confession. Sometimes I want to skip the rest of the week of being a mom. Well, not the whole part, just the parts that make me cranky.
I want to sit at a beach (of course covered), with my heels tucked into warm sand, sun rays hitting my face as I sip on a pineapple and coconut concoction (of course virgin) of bliss.
I want a magic wand that with a simple shake have my house sorted, my children fed and in bed; leaving me with nothing to do, but to enjoy the company of myself over a cup of warm spicy chai tea.
I am completely drained out, run over by people, things, time, and by my inevitably long list of things to do. In my last blog, I wrote about my self-care tips. Things I do for myself, to take care of Me, so that I may be at my best. I meant every word of it, however, life as a mom doesn’t always flow so smoothly, and allow me to “self care”. There are days when I’ve been hit upside down and am completely disoriented. And that’s normal too!
Lately, I’ve been running against time. At the crack of dawn my body goes into autopilot and late into the night when I finally find my way back to bed, I take with me a mind still networking; remembering, planning and thinking. Whether it’s for my children, my husband, my home, my family, my work, even my self, there is always something brewing. As much as I am driven by the things I love to do, conveniently jotted down in my diary, sometimes, I just want to rip it up into dust instead and watch it vanish into thin air.
I’m trying my best to be a present mom, a loving mom, an involved mom, all while balancing work, home, and everything in-between. Which sometimes still leaves me in a state of, “I’m just not getting enough done.”
I sit here often just wanting to surrender.
Wondering do other moms feel the same way? Beneath all those courteous salams, and beautiful smiles, is there a cranky mom simmering beneath, wanting so badly to have a meltdown, just to have somebody come hug her and say, ” there, there, my love, it’ll all be okay.”
Motherhood is in-explainable, a beautiful blessing and yet the most complex role I have ever played in my life. Most of the time my children are happy, cooperative, fulfilling, and loving, however, they also come with NO WARNING trigger for spontaneous hatred, rage, insensitivity, demands, and everything else that contributes to my motherhood induced periodical insanity.
I love my children beyond words can describe. But, I also know there are times I want to run, simply stop, or no longer collect myself so that I can make it to end of the day. I just want to throw myself out on the floor and throw a massive tantrum.
I often wonder why these feelings take over without warning? Why do I get overwhelmed one day, and am quite ready to pick up and move on the next day?
Answer: It’s all in my mind. On the former days I imagine peace, kids in bed, compliance, food cooked, house cleaned, laundry folded, and of course my relationship at it best, leaving me me with time to read, study, relax, or even simply stare out into open space.
All this “imagining” is the trigger to spiraling into a state of self pity. My perception of what would make my day better, is precisely the catalyst to my feelings of burnt out. “Why is this so difficult, I’m not good enough, I can’t do this, I wish…, If only …” This happens often, faster than we can realize; certain thought processes guide us to an unsafe place, we feel threatened, overwhelmed and that’s when feelings of hopelessness hijack us.
What brought me back to safety, was an alteration in not what I was doing, but in what I was thinking.
So the laundry that’s always there, today glared at me, dishes seemed to have quadrupled in number, everything the children did were like deliberate attempts to undermine me and my efforts. In a nutshell, the mess was bigger, the children were reckless, and of course no body cared; all thoughts circulating and getting bigger in my head with each minute.
Here is the second round of thinking which was triggered by the post realization of my negativity high jack. You may wonder, how can one come to that realization? It takes practice, but learn to Stop! Breathe! Not Judge! Not react to every thought that comes in and out of your mind. Simply allow the flow! That’s when you will realize the power of choice; the freedom of choosing how to feel, how to react.
Once you have collected yourself. Remind yourself of the countless blessings of being a mother, the importance of intention. Remind yourself of the names of Allah swt. Seek help by invoking Him with the best of His names, knowing with conviction that He hears you. And contemplate some of the most powerful words:
“Verily, with hardship there is relief” (Qur’an 94:6)
With this newfound calmness tell yourself, just because I had a bad day, or week does not make me a bad mom. Those are moments that don’t define me. They are simply moments of life.
We wake up in the morning and get the kids ready for school with all that is involved (brushing teeth, showering, breakfast, packing lunch, dropping them off). Some of us have little children at home, some home-school, some work, some take care of joint families, and some have a mixture of all. I realized how much courage, stamina, bravery , devotion, commitment, and most importantly love it takes to keep going.
So whatever your situation, working mom, single mom, new mom, veteran mom, at home mom, homeschooling mom, or schooling mom; it’s difficult! Accept that fact. After which you can move on. Some days, you will not feel appreciated or accomplished. In fact, despite your attempts you may still feel like you’re failing, struggling, or not doing enough. But those feelings don’t make you a bad mom. The fact that you wake up each morning to be back on the track, is sign that you are a good mom.
You love your children. You push with great strengths to get through the day; at the end making sure those dishes are washed, food is served, homework is complete (well almost), so that the kids can have a better day tomorrow. You peek through their doors when they are asleep hoping and praying that even in their dreams they find joy and safety. You finally drop down on your bed, many times not realizing how fast exhaustion overtakes you.
And when you wake up in the morning, you try Again!
You are a lover, a fighter, a mentor, an advocate, a judge, a teacher.
Know that it’s okay to want to pull the covers over, to want to run, or sit by a meadow away from noise. We were created mothers, not super human.
Remember being a mom is a about the good kind of heart ache. The wanting to hide yourself from your kids sometimes, the imperfect moments that carry important lessons, the hugs and kisses after the storm, the frazzled hair and socks tucked in the pajama look that signify the joys and scars of that day.
So just be you, keep pushing, fighting, loving, crying, laughing, creating; keep mothering.
And when it get too tough that you can’t remember anything I have said; than just remember this: