As I look around my house, I realize everything I thought I would get done after having the baby has yet to be done.
I went part-time at work so I could focus more on being a mother and so I could manage our home better.
I thought it would help me get more organized, that I would be able to cook a healthy meal five days a week and we’d start losing some weight.
But instead, it has taken me over a month to visit the chiropractor even though I’ve had an appointment scheduled for several weeks.
I finally signed the contract for a new pest control company but it’s been weeks and they still don’t have my credit card information in order to actually start the service. I always forget to call.
I go to the grocery store without a plan and pick up anything that looks easy and delicious, with no thought to the health of it.
The house is still a mess. All the clothes I “KonMari’d” on maternity leave have yet to be donated or trashed. The kitchen is full of baby bottles and pump parts and dirty dishes. My sheets keep getting puked on and no . . . I still haven’t washed them.
Sometimes I look at all of these things that need to be done and I blame the baby.
I’m not watching what I eat because I need to make milk for the baby.
I haven’t called the pest company because the baby is crying or sleeping.
I can’t make it to the chiropractor because I don’t have a babysitter or the baby needs to eat.
I don’t have time to clean the kitchen because the baby needs me.
But I realized the real truth is I’m just mentally exhausted. I’m struggling every day with being needed all the time.
So when I finally do have “free time” the last thing I want is to be doing dishes or laundry.
I just want to sit and revel in the white noise machine playing in the background and just be “alone”. But I’m never truly alone.
In truth, the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do was to be a mother who happens to be an introvert.
I’m constantly battling wanting to take care of my child and be there for him with wanting to be completely and utterly alone.
But I haven’t been truly alone since he was born.
No, I’m not blaming him.
I blame myself for not taking care of me.
I blame myself for not wanting to let go of control.
Although I ask my in-laws to come over all the time and play with the baby while I clean the house, I’ve never asked them to take him to their home.
I’ve never asked for just one hour to be alone and recharge.
Instead, I burst into tears every time the baby takes too long to go to sleep.
I tell my son’s fatigued grandparents that I don’t need them to stay any longer—they can go home and rest.
I let my husband swoop in and take the baby—but only for a few minutes before I feel guilty for feeling this way and take him back.
But I’m beginning to realize if I want to be a good mother, one who doesn’t make angry faces or yell at her perfectly innocent baby, I need to take care of myself.
I need to let go a little and realize he will be OK without me for a little while.
I have to be OK with needing what I need.
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