Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Drama

First things first: the pacifier seems to be a thing of the past. It's taking Vivian a bit longer than usual to fall asleep, but that's it. I can handle an extra 20 minutes of playing around in the crib. And Isaac slept until 7 this morning and no doubt would have slept longer if his sister had not awoken at 6:45 demanding, "Up! I want to get up, Mommy! Mommy!!"

If that's your best shot, Mommy jinx, I'm all over it.

(I realize this is beyond stupid and I will pay the price later but I'm feeling especially reckless right now. )

Another thing I'm feeling right now? Confused. Confused about my relationship with Lance, confused about who I am and what I want and why I seem to be so fucking unhappy all the time, even though I'm also actually thrilled quite often too. See? Confusion.

People have been writing about motherhood, and how it can be lonely and frustrating at times. I feel it, too. And my husband bears the brunt of those feelings. I am bitter and resentful. After all, Lance gets to have his same old life except with two extra little morsels to munch on when he comes home from work. He goes to work, just like he always did, and eats lunch in nice restaurants that use cloth napkins, talks and jokes with his colleagues all day, runs around being useful and accomplishing things and getting strokes from his boss and a paycheck every two weeks. Just like before the kids, except that now he has the added bonus of Isaac and Vivian. Not to mention a slave, I mean wife, who runs all the errands and does a myriad of things that he used to do before.

Yeah, so when he comes home he has to give the kids a bath, or take them for a walk, but is that really so hard? I mean, is it? REALLY?? So hard that he needs to go skiing with his buddies for 10 days? So hard that he needs to go out with friends two nights in a row to see a band that really, really dates him?

Meanwhile, my life is completely, totally, irrevocably changed. I don't do ANYTHING without first considering the kids. And I don't mean in an Uber Mommy oh-let-me-do-that-for-you way; I mean in a two-and-three-year-olds-aren't-even-close-to-being-independent way. I don't ever go anywhere without planning. I can't get my fucking hair cut or go to the doctor without scheduling a time that Isaac is in school, and my mother in law is available to babysit, at a time when traffic won't be an issue, and a day when my doctor or the hair salon is available.

And I know these are old, tired complaints. Most of you are mothers, you know exactly what I'm talking about. You know why I sometimes feel bitter or pissy. Why I wish I had some really important, high paying job so I could do that instead of be home with the kids.

The thing is, some days, it's incredible. Some days I look at my kids and they are so fucking beautiful and sweet and charming and edible and I think "I am so lucky to have this time with them." I think, "My god, what would I do without them?" Then my heart explodes into a million tiny, warm bubbles of goodness that dissipate into my bloodstream and turn my whole body into a quivering lump of ecstasy, not unlike an especially luxurious orgasm. Some days, the weather is gorgeous, and we go to the beach and the sand isn't too hot and there are enough light green shovels ("I don't want the blue one, Mommy!!!") for everybody and I get to sit there, in the sun, on a beach chair and watch my children play. I am thrilled in those moments. In all those moments of the day, I am smiling, I am grateful, I am content.

So what, exactly, am I so bitter and resentful about? Why can't I focus on the good stuff and be grateful for these two wonderful beings that have made my life six thousand times better than I ever imagined? Why do I persist in feeling bitter, and resentful, and put upon and OHMYGOD IF I HAVE TO WIPE THE SNOT OFF ONE MORE NOSE TODAY I WILL ABSOLUTELY DIE.

Obviously, as often as I have my moments of bliss with the kids, I also have days where the spilled soy yogurt is followed by the broken lamp and followed by a head-butting 3 year old and a hitting two year old and 6,547 time-outs before nine o'clock in the morning. Days where the frustration level in the house is pushing way into the red zone and my parenting skills are maybe not something I would necessarily be proud of.

Then 5:30 rolls around and Lance waltzes in and says something innocent like "What did you do today?" or "It's hot, why isn't the fan on?" and suddenly I'm in bitch mode, stalking around picking up toys and laundry or slamming open the fridgerator door muttering things like "Oh, god knows I don't have anything to do except eat chocolate and watch Oprah" loud enough for him to hear. Just like that, I'm pissed off for the next whatever--sometimes 10 minutes, sometimes an hour-- depending on when something happens to diffuse my mood, and I can't even tell what that will be until it occurs. And even as this is happening, even as I'm storming around making dinner loudly while insisting to Lance that "nothing's wrong, FORGET IT" , I can see myself doing it--it's as if I'm standing outside of my body watching, and I'm saying to myself "Don't do this, don't be such a bitch. Just let it go, let's have a good evening"--but I can't stop. All the resentments of the day, all the frustrations and the loneliness --all of it bubbles up in me and I hit Lance over the head with it, over and over, trying to make myself feel better.

Of course I love him. Just like I have the great moments with the kids, I have great moments with him, too. I don't fear for our marriage. But lately things that I used to find charming are just annoying. Lately when he offers to watch the kids so I can go out with friends I don't feel grateful. Lately, all the things he does around the house (and I know it doesn't seem like it from this post, but the truth is, he helps out a ton at home) don't endear him to me. Lately even some surprisingly good sex doesn't fix everything, not like it used to.

So, we are going to see a marriage counselor. (Of course, since I can't do anything without planning for the children (see above) we have to wait until August, when Vivian is in school (!). And making the appointment is just one more fucking thing for me to do.) Still, should be interesting, folks, and you'll be the first to hear all about it.

2 comments:

Joy ~ aka Wild Child said...

Hi,

I am not a mother, so I cannot say I've been in your shoes. But I can understand where you're coming from. Don't beat yourself up for having times you don't understand your life and what makes you upset. Yes, your children make the sun rise but you are still human. You still need time for yourself and not time that just happens to open up for you. Maybe some of the frustration comes from feeling like the time carved out for you makes you feel that you're lucky to have it (when it should be a given you have time for you) and you're feeling the strain of Lance's schedule allowing for his time to be carved out automatically (sort of). These are just thoughts...not meant to be advice...just something I wanted to share.

Be good to you...you deserve it.

Joy

isimsiz kahraman said...
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