If you’ve been following along with me for a while, you’ve probably caught onto the fact that it’s pretty rare for me to share emotional, intimate posts. It’s not because I don’t love you all (because I do “awwww!“), I’ve just never felt entirely comfortable opening up to strangers on the interwebz (it’s a miracle I even have a blog, seriously). Something happened to me on Monday and it wasn’t pleasant. I had, what some might call, a moment.
I had a moment and I think it’s important to understand what’s been leading up to it…
My three year old is amazing. She’s funny, smart, quick, and loving but she’s also a human toddler which, by definition, also makes her a bit of an asshole at times. She’s been testing her boundaries a lot lately and I try to remain as patient as possible as she learns how to navigate through this big World but sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes I lose my
shit cool and I find myself YELLING at a helpless little child who doesn’t really deserve my harsh tone.
I imagine, in those times, I look a little something like this:
Poor Unfortunate Souls
It’s not my child’s fault that I yell. It’s her job to learn, to grow, and to challenge me. It’s my job, as a mother, to love her unconditionally and help her grow, learn, and interact with other people. In those moments, where the inner sea witch in me is hurling her ugly face out of the water, I am the worst and those feelings of inadequacy come creeping back in. In those moments, I feel like the worst, most unfit mother to my daughter. Those kinds of feelings eat you alive.
We’ve had some challenging mornings lately where I’ve raised my voice more than I care to admit and so I was already feeling pretty down about my parenting abilities. On Monday evening when I started thinking about all of the ways in which I’m failing as a mom, life hit me like a ton of bricks. I just can’t do anything right.
I can pinpoint the exact moment that the overwhelming negativity invaded my mind. I was sitting at the dinner table and all of the sudden, the darkness settled in and all of the things that I’ve done wrong in my role as a mother, as a wife, a friend, a daughter, a sister, a writer, and a consultant hit me. In that moment, I felt pretty shitty.
So I had a come to Jesus talk with myself over a very long and tearful shower and I went over my choices:
Run away. Ignore my problems.
- Deal with it and try to be better.
I realized that the only option I have is to deal with the issues (the yelling, the feelings of inadequacy, the shortcomings in my personal and professional life, etc) head on. I’m an adult so maybe it’s time for me to put on my big girl panties and face it. In the days that have passed, I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting and I’ve come to one conclusion:
I’m going to have days where I feel like the biggest jackass that’s ever walked the Planet. I’m going to have moments where I raise my voice when I need to remain calm (I am human, after all). I’m going to have times when I don’t knock off every item on my to-do list for the day and I need to be okay with that. I need to step back and realize that I am not competing against the mother of the year, the perfect spouse, or the ideal _____ (fill in the blank). I am competing against myself. Every day.
In those moments, like the one I had on Monday, I need to remind myself that I can’t change the past but I can always strive to be better in the future. Who knows, maybe you need that reminder too…