Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The One Where I Get Honest

Motherhood. I love it. Its not at all what I expected it to be, but I do obviously love it.

The hugs around the neck, the forgiveness they give that I myself haven't even learned how to give, the way they throw caution to the wind, the confidence they carry, the lack of judgement they have for others, and the way they love me without hesitation or boundaries.

Those are just a handful of things they teach me that I never expected to learn from someone who couldn't even tie their own shoes.

Its humbling.

My love for them is so passionate and so strong that its painful sometimes. I can't believe that I can love someone so deeply - and more than that, I can't believe that God's love for me is even deeper than that.

It is truly a love that knows no bounds, this mother and child bond that we share. But there is another side to it sometimes.

The pressure. The nonstop demands. The time when being annoyed turns into anger.

The angry mom. That's me lately.

Our days start out just like normal. But 3 hours later I find myself yelling at them somewhere as they stare at their frazzled mother, confused as to why I am at the end of my rope. All while some well intentioned stranger in the middle of the freezer section at the grocery is telling me, "how fast this time goes" and "how much I'll miss it."

I'm sure I'll miss it. It's just that right now that's hard to see since I'm having trouble forming full sentences come bedtime because my brain is so fried from the day.

These little people that I love so dearly can walk me to the edge, and then push me right off with a little nudge.

If its not them fighting, it's them whining. If they aren't running through the kitchen, they're destroying the basement I just cleaned. And if they aren't asking, "how come!?", they're saying, "that's not fair!".

(And for the love of all that is holy, can I just sit down and take one bite of my meal before they ask for something else!?)

(Deep breathe in.)

The tension builds, the arguing escalates, the noise level rises.

And all of the sudden it hits me. That overwhelmed feeling . I start to feel like I can't take another second of the fighting, and like I'm going to pull my hair out if I have to clean another room...do another load of laundry...break up another fight...wash another dish.

The angry mom sets in, and the patient mom that they need goes away.

There are days when I should be fired.

Sometimes I can't believe the harsh things that come out of my mouth. I don't mean them, I'm just tired. I'm just trying to learn as I go. And I'm just trying to do this 6 kid thing without much sleep and without fail.

But deep inside I know that failing is part of motherhood. Deep inside I know that trial and error is part of the journey. And deep inside I know that He has already gone before me and paved the road I'm on.

Mothering is a constant reminder of how much I need Him.

He knew what He was doing when He put each little life in my womb. He knew when He placed each hair on their head that this would not only be a journey for them, but a huge learning journey for me.

He knew that He was going to use motherhood to mold me into a woman that reflects Him more.

(Although sometimes I think I reflect someone who should be taken away by men in white suits to a padded room where I can scream and punch the wall freely.)

(Again, just being honest.)

I don't have to have all the answers, and I'm never going to be the perfect mom. All I have to do is get through today. All you have to do is get through today. We will worry about tomorrow when the sun comes up.

Raising 6 (or any amount of) kids is stressful. And hard. And incredibly exhausting.

I want to add how wonderful it is as well - but today, and this week, and the past month, it's been more hard than wonderful. I hate admitting that.

I'm tired of the impression that so many other moms are always running a tight ship and raising perfect children every single day of the week. So just in case you're wondering, I don't. I get angry, I'm struggling with keeping my attitude in check, and there are times when I text a friend and say, "I just want to get in the car and drive away". Not everyday, but some days.

This is a season of survival.

I keep telling myself that I can't possibly be alone in feeling this way sometimes. That every other mother must feel something similar at some point. And if you've never felt this way, then you're either lying, or you should write a parenting book.

My kids don't need that angry lady yelling and barking orders, they need their mama. And honestly, friends, I clearly need them just as much as they need me.

I love them with my whole being. And I wouldn't trade this life for anything. But it's not always pretty. So if you're in the same boat, know that you're not alone :).

Here's to a new day, with new mercies, and fresh beginnings. All of which is grace.


TwinsanityMom - Janet said...

All I can say is Amen! Thank you for this post. And big hugs!!

darcie said...

We've all been there, haven't we? It's hard, this life balance thing. I'm grateful to have a supportive husband who tries to help me as much as he can, but oh, what I wouldn't do for a grandma or two, who could step in and give me just an hour, ok, 4, so that I could have some time, some guilt free time.......................

April said...

This post can so be me at times and made me think of something my mom and I said this last weekend...It's a wonder that mothers are taken off by men in white suits...motherhood makes us crazy!
It is worth it, but oh how crazy we can be.

Marinewife1111 {Marcella} said...

I have been having a lot of anger issues lately also. Every morning I start out asking God to keep me cool and collected and before I know, I've reached a boiling over point again.
Its nice to be able to keep each other accountable and also know we are not alone in these struggles!

Emily said...

I love your honesty. I think that is one of the reasons I love your blog as much as I do. Its always honest. About the good and the bad. I know that when I have kids and am struggling I will remember this post and that I'm not alone in feeling crazy. Thank you for sharing so openly. Praying for grace, peace and joy.

Sarah said...

Reading this, almost felt like looking into a mirror for me. I'm so where you're at with the whole craziness and whining just gets the better of me thing and sometimes I think I just want to drive away too. But boy, does it keep refreshing my picture of God and His amazing patience and perseverance with me. He is teaching me so much about my own selfishness and expectations and about how I can't make it one second without leaning on Him.

Hang in there. Our kids will want to know one day that it really WASN'T easy every day, and that they are normal when they feel this way with their own little ones someday.

Drew and Kristin said...

Thank you for posting this! It was refreshing to hear that I'm not the only Mom out there feeling that way too.
~ Kristin

Anonymous said...

Thanks for such an honest post! I have been struggling lately too. But it will pass. and I love my 4 kids dearly!

Julia said...

Amen, sister!! Wow! I could have written the same post! I feel so bad, guilty sometimes with how angry I can get, how tired I am of picking up after them. I try to remind myself that they will not always be this age but it doesn't seem to help very much! I find a break helps the most, but those are hard to find. A trip to the grocery store suddenly becomes fun when I'm by myself!! lol!

And why do people have to make those comments right when you are at your weakest and just want to get done at the grocery store with all the kids?? I try to be nice but sometimes I am honest and some lady told me just to take lots of deep breaths...it does help a bit!

Thanks for being so honest! Helps to not feel so alone in this thing called motherhood. Its differently not what I thought it would be!! But its worth it.

Jill said...

Good to read this post today after I was up the ENTIRE night with my 2 last night (sickness, teething, bad dreams, who knows!??) but going to work today after being up all night was so exhausting and it's comforting to know other's have tough days too at times!

Miss Moe said...

oh this must be the season for a lot of us. i have been struggling so much! living 1700 miles from my closest family member, having sick kids a lot since we moved, and they are sick now! very few friends. and just feeling overwhelmed and alone! i just got an email from a friend who told me i complain about my kids too often on facebook and it sometimes seems like i don't like them. SO NOT TRUE! that i need to be more mindful of people who have lost kids and that they would give anything to have a screaming toddler. to that i want to hand her my address and tell them to come and pick her up! bc sister! she can scream for 2 hours NON STOP! and when she is doing this and the other one is puking into a towel, i want to run like the wind to anywhere but where i am. i lose my cool. i say things that probably would be considered abusive and then i feel horrible and guilty and ashamed bc i know that my heavenly father would NEVER speak to me like that. this truly is a learning journey. and i thank God for HIS mercy on ME. thanks for being honest. thanks for sharing with the rest of us so we don't feel alone. thanks for making it a safe place to agree without being judged harshly. so glad you are on this journey with me.

Savvy Little Women - Kate said...

Oh my heart is so blessed by all your words. Thankful for such wonderful mama's to walk this journey with :).

Stacie@HobbitDoor said...

Amen! Between working and being pregnant huge, "mean mommy" has been making a far too frequent appearance. Thanks for the reminder that I am not alone.

The Beaver Bunch said...

One more reason why I love you, sweet friend.

Your honesty.

With blogging and facebook it's SO EASY for people to only see the good side. The perfectly posed Easter photos, the sweet little sleeping baby, all swaddled up and perfect.

The internet doesn't show that right before the camera snapped you yelled at your kids to "SIT DOWN AND STOP TALKING!" or, during the middle of the night you got so ticked off at your newborn for waking up every freaking hour that you punched your pillow in frustration.

We could so be BFFs.

Girl, I can't wait to meet you and hug your neck. One day, Lord willing! One day!

Can you even fathom the chaos? Sweet glory it would be amazing :)

Shelbi said...

You said everything that every Mom feels. If Mom's would start to be more honest and stop pretending to be perfect..the world would feel a little less lonely;) I'm with ya, Jan...especially this week!!

*Katy* said...

You are totally not alone!!! I have to go in the other room and shut the door sometimes and just take a deep breath and remind myself that being a mother is a blessing. I'm also incredibly lucky because my mom is always willing to babysit so if I'm at the end of my rope I can go out for an hour and usually regain my composure. Just know that you're in this struggle with lots of other mommy's and you are one fabulous mom :)

Anonymous said...

You are an amazing mother!! Their are so many other moms that feel the same way and just don't admit to those feelings. I admire your strength and your honesty!! God will walk beside you throughout this amazing journey! I love you!

Lenae said...

Oh, how I needed this today. Really... that walk from annoyed to angry -- I am there right now, and there is such encouragement in realizing I am not alone and I am not a terrible human being for feeling this way from time to time. I value your honesty so much, Kate. Thanks for putting this out there.

Anonymous said...

You are an amazing, caring, nurturing mother and that is more important than anything! Your heart of gold shows through every blog post you make. Your kids are so lucky to have you as a mother. I admire your honesty in your blog and i think there are many, many, many mothers out there that feel the same way you do. Caring for any amount of children, 1 or 6 is not easy, but it is rewarding and worth it. I nanny full time for 3 children under the age of 5 and boy can it be trying sometime. Remember that everything is a stage, they grow into it and will grow out of it. Take care and have confidence because we each do the best we can with what we are given. Stay strong mama!

Anonymous said...

A month or so ago, I called Leah and said, I am coming over and I need a drink. I had to get away. We have all been there!!!

Marisa said...

Yep! I've been there. Our kiddos are sharp little chisels, arent' they? I have seen my sin nature so much more clearly since having my kids. Praise the Lord that we don't walk this road alone if we are willing to reach out to one another. Hang in there, Momma!

Robin @ Pink Dryer Lint said...

So very true -- yes, we've all been there (or currently are there!)

Ruth Anne said...

Clearly, by all the comments, you've hit upon something all of us as mothers go through.

This past week has been... (looks around and whispers *hell*). My boys have been OFF THE HOOK. To the point that yesterday, as I was driving home from the doctor's office (where they were swinging on counters and jumping off chairs. Say WHA???) I was sobbing and just WISHING, HOPING and PRAYING I'd get pulled over. Why?

So I could beg the nice policeman to please put my boys in the back of his car and give them a talk about being respectful. Respectful to other people, to property and to their MOM!

Oh my, it must be something in the air, the time of year, the enemy at work, because it seems like every mother I talk to is going through such a press. Such an extra hard time.

It's times like these that I'm thankful I can tuck them in at night with a kiss and an apology for what I did wrong that day. So they know I'm not above admitting when I haven't done it so well, and that I still love them with every fiber of my being.

Hang in there. We're all going through similar things. And if worst comes to worst... maybe we can have a reunion of some sort at some un-named facility with men in white. ;-)

The Sneaky Mommy said...

Right there with ya! (and obviously a bunch of others, too!) I'd love to form some neat-o complimentary sentences, but instead I gotta pump. ;) Thanks for the encouragement!

Ruth said...

I will join in with the "Amen, and amens!"

I have one child in particular that makes me want to throw in the towel -- quite often. (Like, why in the WORLD would you try to spear your siblings with a tiki torch while they're swinging? I'M RAISING YOU BETTER THAN THAT -- AND YOU WON'T LAST LONG IF YOU KEEP THIS UP!!!)

But he's also the child that wraps his arms around my head at bedtime, strokes my head, and covers me with kisses. The kids, they forgive... just like Jesus!