I don’t have it all together. For those of you who think I do, thank you for having faith in me. But I’m about to get real with you guys for a minute.
I’m drowning. I feel like I’m spiraling out of control and I don’t have the slightest idea on how to fix it. Because the reality of things is I have limited help. I have no family to come over and let me shower or bring me a meal when Z is out of town. I have friends with small children and jobs that limit their availability. I have a husband who answers to Uncle Sam and unfortunately doesn’t get much notice when he has to leave. I have no babysitter, no daycare, and no one to just hug me and tell me it’s going to be okay.
There are times when I think I have things under control. But then I check my planner and realize I had a deadline. Or a meeting. Or I missed a doctors appointment. I forgot to switch the laundry the night before and left a sink full of dirty dishes. Trash day was Monday? Shit. It’s 11 pm? Why is my child still up? I forget to text back, I don’t make my bed for days, and I’m perpetually running late. I forget to eat, I drink more coffee than water, and I have zero patience left by the end of the day.
I’m not the only one who is out of control. My daughter doesn’t sleep. Literally, she’s insane. She co-sleeps with us and won’t go to bed until I’m laying next to her and she’s snuggled up against my side. On the off chance I do get her to sleep, she wakes up the minute I move or realizes I’m not there. And even worse than not sleeping, she’s still breastfeeding and refuses to give it up. I’ve tried everything and nothing I do works. If I’m not here, she’s fine. But if I’m here, she will pull at my shirt and scream until I let her nurse. And if all of this isn’t bad enough, she only nurses when it’s bedtime but since she doesn’t sleep, she nurses and then shoots back up like a damn firework. I don’t know you guys, I just don’t know!
I don’t want to sound like Negative Nancy because I’m truly lucky to have an amazing family, opportunities, and life. But I’m human and sometimes I get overwhelmed. Okay, a lot of the time I get overwhelmed. I want to work and I want to be a good mom and wife, and sometimes I don’t know if all of that is possible. I know people do it everyday but how? I need to know how you balance it all because I’m struggling with managing everything I need to do and occupying my needy toddlers at the same time. These feelings come and go in cycles because sometimes I’m on top of the world. I get ahead with work and I spend all day playing with my kids. But other times I’m waiting for a nap time that never comes and having anxiety attacks every hour. Will it ever balance out?
I know this is a short period of my life. The kids are only little once and I’ll want this back, I get that. I’ve been told that and I know it’s true. But that doesn’t mean it’s not hard. Especially when Z is working late or out of town. I’m constantly on call and answering every cry, whine, and request. I’m keeping myself, two kids, two cats, and a dog alive, making sure they’re fed, clean, and happy. I’m the one to blow out the candles, lock the doors, set the alarm, pack the lunches, drive to school, let the dog out, let the dog in, kiss the boo-boos, and pick up the house when it’s finally quiet. I sleep for a few hours and then it’s another day to do it all over again.
It’s exhausting y’all, but I’m trying to stay as positive as I can. Why? Because I don’t have a choice. I saw someone share a quote on Twitter the other day and it really made me think. That if we all threw our problems into a circle, we’d want our own back. I’m struggling hardcore right now but I know other people have far bigger problems. But we are all fighting our own battles; some we choose to share, and others we keep tucked away inside. Some big, some small. Some short, some long. And while brainstorming all of the ways I can try to control the chaos, I realized that I don’t have a solution. Because I’m not sure there is one! Chaos is called chaos for a reason and there’s often no one solution to make it all okay.
So where do I go from here? I get organized. I accept that I can’t do it all and prioritize. I declutter and purge. I work on eating balanced meals and drinking more water. I put my foot down on a bedtime routine and I set rules. For my kids and for myself. Will it help? I guess we’ll see won’t we? But in case you thought I had it all together, I don’t. And I wanted you to know that because I don’t want you to feel like you have to either.
Sometimes all we need to hear is that it’s going to be okay and to know that someone is there for us. If you know someone who is feeling overwhelmed or going through a hard time, reach out to them. If their spouse travels a lot, if they’re a single mother, if they’re a new mom, whatever the case may be… reach out to them. And even if you don’t know if they’re struggling, make it a point to just regularly check in on your friends and family, simply just to ask “how are you doing?” It will mean more than you know… I promise.