Boy am I glad yesterday is over, and I pray today is better! I totally got my butt kicked yesterday. The girls weren’t any different than they usually are, but I just could not cope. I usually don’t feel the pressure of three-under-three, but my monthly hormones made sure to lower my defenses and eradicate my ability to cope with simple stressors. In short, I was losing my freaking mind.
I called Yev and asked him if it would be horrible if I skipped the family birthday dinner at the Russians, and he said it was no problem. He would take the girls out of the house, so I could have the house alone. I totally started crying. I’m pretty good at engaging in self-care, but I realized I never get to be home alone. Whenever, I need time for myself, I always have to go somewhere to get it, but Yev gave me two blissful hours at home alone, uninterrupted.
Two hours where no one needed to go potty, no one needed a bottle, no one needed to be put in time out. So what’s the first thing I did, you might ask? I opened all of the doors in the house. Our house is constantly on lockdown, and I have more gates than LAX. It can feel claustrophobic to keep everything shut, but it seems to be the only way to keep the toddler twins in check. As they continue to mature, we give them more freedom, but it’s a slow process. So every door is open, including the sliding doors to the outside, and I put some music on the Bose speaker. Raign’s “Don’t Let Me Go” blares through the speaker because I can actually do that. Because there are no kids sleeping. I’m tempted to have a snack, just because I can, without anyone trying to take it from me, but there’s work to do.
I grab a trash bag and proceed to empty out the cabinet under the sink. I’m a stress cleaner, and organizing my house restores my equilibrium. I tidy up our room, and I’m beginning to feel better; I’m beginning to feel like me again. Just in time too because Yev is home, dopey smile wavering on his face from the weight of physical and mental fatigue. He totally took one for the team. I’m feeling pretty restored at this point, and so I tell him to take a break.
I put the kids to bed with a happy heart because I was able to take a break. Moms, we need this. especially when our hormones make us crazy. I don’t know about you ladies, but my monthly rollercoaster is way worse after my third child than after my first two. My mom said everything ramped up in her 30s too. What the heck? Like I’m not overwhelmed enough? But I digress. The important thing is I asked for help. We can’t do this alone, and I’ve found humbling myself enough to ask for help has made me a better mother. It allows me to be more patient with my children, as opposed to losing my mind on them, and it provides me with an opportunity to demonstrate humility and vulnerability.
Sometimes as moms we do this really well, usually out of desperation, but sometimes we fight it. I was having a really difficult time today with being a mess for a couple of reasons. One, I’m not a messy person. I’ve become defined by my organizational and coping skills, so I feel very uncomfortable when I’m emotionally unstable. Two, the feelings I had for my children, as they pried my fingers away from my tenuous grasp on my sanity, made me feel like a bad mother. Then guilt began to set in and then shame. These self-deprecating pitfalls are not your friends, and they will only make motherhood feel like an impossible job.
If you are feeling overwhelmed, ask for help. Reach out to people who love you and want to help. 8/10 I feel like I’m kicking ass at this motherhood thing, but 20% of the time I feel like I’m failing. When I’m feeling great, I’m in a great place to help out the people I love, and when I’m struggling, I’m in a great place to receive their help. Choose humility and vulnerability instead of guilt and shame. Choose to love yourself.