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July 30, 2012


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SO. SO. hit-the-nail-on-the-head-true. Why is it so hard to give ourselves permission to not be perfect (or, in my case, even competent) at everything? I had mini breakdown this spring/early summer after starting my business with just a small amount of preschool time for my youngest. The whole having-something-for-myself-and-my-brain thing that I thought would help restock my negative mental stores just couldn't happen when I got no more help on everything else I've always done for the past 7 & 1/2 years. It's just hard. Damn hard.

And, seriously, can there be freakin' ANYONE (even an actual superhero!!) who doesn't get tired of serving 3 meals plus endless snacks every.single.day and waiting an hour for a child to sleep???? No. It's impossible.

Hang in there. Thank you.

Soo true! It can feel like invisible, unthankful work that is EXHAUSTING yet so easy for some to think you sit around the sofa doing NOWT all day. There is a reason sleep deprivation is a form of torture, try a 5am - 10pm day of non stop work on top of that. Good days and bad days.. Hanf in there

A-freaking-men. I feel that all the time. And then I feel guilty when my husband helps out because I think (somewhere, in my twisted brain) that I should be doing whatever he is doing. This gig is hard.

So true. Thank you for this.

@Asha - We are beginning that transition now. The thinking part of it is where we're sort of 'stuck' because our oldest (almost 10) just isn't quite there. Someday....

P.S. You're in Portland? Me too!

It doesn't matter how many (or how few) kids you have, if you have help or not. At some point there's only so much you can take. That limit is different for everyone, but no less difficult or important.

My kids are older, and I am dealing with them helping out around the house. I am trying to figure out how much I should expect, and how much I need to push. While I realize that my husband is a hands-off kind of guy, it doesn't make it any easier year after year.

Some days I can smile and take it in stride, other days I am railing against the bars of my confinement. Find a balance? I try. Every single effing day I try.

Very well put. And like Asha said, I'm convinced that if I could just get the house organized (a place for everything, and everything in its place), I would feel at peace. But given that I've never felt totally peaceful for more than a few moments in my whole life, I guess I'm setting myself up for failure.

I know. I just know. Hugging you through the ether, although that's hardly enough.

I believe I was crying about the same stuff last night. Sigh. Sobbing.

@Karen (Submommy): Yes. It gets better as kids get older, but whew. Now I talk to my kids a lot about needing to delegate not only the WORK, but the THINKING about the work. As in, if they see a job that obviously needs doing, they don't need to wait till I ask them about it. Or, they can go one or two additional steps beyond what I've asked. Mentally supervising and sorting is as much work, if not more, at least it is for me.

Thanks for sharing this. I think we can all relate (at least those of us with no family anywhere nearby). Like you, I have help every day. Usually it's two sisters (older than me). They watch the kids, empty the dishwasher, fold and put away laundry, empty garbage cans, make beds, and clean up behind me as I make dinner. It usually takes us about an hour and a half, then I have the rest of the day to just enjoy the kids. (I feel spoiled rotten and love it. My mood has improved tenfold since we started this at my MIL suggestion.) Maybe you need a sitter upgrade.

Also, with such a tidal wave of emotion in the morning, I can't help but wonder where you are with the medication. Maybe you'll update us sometime soon.

Hang in there!!! And thanks again for sharing.

Amen. Relentless. That's hard to face some days.

Thank you to you and Mom-101 for putting it out there. Domestic claustrophobia and the "doing it all" drives me up the wall. No matter how much I *try* to talk to my husband about it, he doesn't get it and I suppose he never will. Wonderful to see I'm not the only one.

@Asha - "Relentlessness" is the perfect word to describe it. This constant pushing and pulling on you in multiple directions. It's the repetition of dishes, clothes, fights, and decisions from the moment you wake until the moment you go to bed.

I long for silence sometimes. It's such a rare thing in my life.


I would kill to have a babysitter just once a month so I could have some time off. Having five kids, and no family or friends around to help out once in awhile, burns you out quick. I feel your pain...HUGS!

Love you, K. Yes indeed, it can be SUCH a crush. The relentlessness of it all. I've fallen into the trap many times when I think "If I could just organize it all, keep track of the details..." but it's like trying to organize a tidal wave. I'm always looking for what I can simplify, delegate and outright cut. Hard to accept because that process in itself requires more thought and feels impossible (first thought: I can't cut anything) but I'm slowly making headway. Sending you all my good and helpful thoughts.

You make such a great point about how we're still who we were before we had kids. Yes, we've changed in response to the changes in our lives and circumstances, but our core selves are who they are.

It's actually kind of reassuring, knowing that. Parenting can often make us feel as if we've lost ourselves, but we're really still in there.

I take Sundays off. I don't clean and I don't cook. Hell, I cook only 3 days a week. Mainly, because there is only so many times I can have people tell me they don't like what I worked to make and because I don't have the time to cook the way I would like.

Right now, I am paying my oldest daughter (10) $10 to vacuum the upstairs, including bathrooms, playroom and stairs. She has enlisted her brother's (6) help for $1 and the youngest (3) is just up there for kicks. She wanted the money and I have it, so why not. That $10 is buying me some semi-quiet time to watch the Olympics (would it be so much to ask for gymnastics to be on at this time), sit on the laptop and relax. Not a buy way to spend $10. I will say a few sounds my Dyson has made have had me scared, but all is good for now.

Ahhh! So awesome! I loved this post, because there's such a misconception about what it's like to be at home raising children and how we must all be super moms. But we yell and we cry and we get frustrated and we sometimes feel defeated. So well written!

I remember the moment when the tears pierced my eyes and my nose burned as the all-consuming reality that I wasn't perfect and couldn't do it all hit me. Despite being a very smart, rational woman, I still fucking chase that perfection like Charlie with the damn football.

"domestic claustrophobia"... EXACTLY!!!

Me too....but I still *feel* like I HAVE to do it all

It's like you went into my brain and just wrote what was in there...I was awoken today by a beeping fire alarm and a crying toddler because of the fire alarm. Husband MIA today. Then, while 7 months pregnant, I got to climb a ladder and remove the exploded battery and got covered in double A battery chemicals. And our dog is sick. And we're out of milk.

The daily grind....I believe it may be the death of all of us. And yet...we wake up and do it and do it and do it again. Thanks for this. It helps to not feel so alone!

Thanks, I needed to hear that I am not the only one that feels this way. I am trying so hard and I do love being a mom but some days the avalanche of tiny things I have to do feels like it is going to crush me!

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