I was at my wit’s end.
My patience was worn down. Not to the nub. No. It was worn down past the nub. It had been pulverized into dust and stomped into the ground.
My heart hurt. My head was spinning. My anxiety was out of control.
All the noise and movement and chaos was so overwhelming to the point that one more screech for “Mommy!” threatened to break me.
I felt like a terrible parent. I want to be a laid-back, fun mom, but on this day I was yelling too quickly. I felt defeated. While I should have been planning fun and educational activities for the kids, I was being too free with screen time. I was just trying to get through the day and hold it all together on the outside, as I fell apart inside.
The day before had started out great with a special breakfast, lots of books read, playing together, and many family laughs watching reruns of Americas Funniest Home Videos. But on this day, trapped inside for a second day due to weather, I lost my steam. I joked about it, even making a lighthearted post on Facebook, but this feeling was not fun. Not funny. I was holding back tears of frustration and emotional exhaustion. I just needed a break.
I needed a break or I feared I may break.
So I took one. I put my toddler in his crib with the tablet. I got my seven-year-old set up in front of the television downstairs. Then, I retreated to my room alone for just a few moments to myself. I needed these moments to collect my thoughts and be able to breathe deeply and to think straight again. To write and exhale out the feelings bottled up inside.
I started to feel better.
I took a deep breath.
It is hard sometimes as parents to be truly open about these waves of raw and negative feelings that come more often than we would like to admit. I worry that by sharing this, I will be judged and thought of as an awful mother for losing my patience. For yelling. For giving the tablet to my two-year-old. Again. But, I am sharing because it is reality.
On this particular day it was MY reality. Maybe today it was yours.
If so, please, please know you are not alone. As hard as it is to talk about, we all go through these times of frustration. We are not terrible mothers. No. We are human.
On that day, during my roughest moments, a kind friend told me to hang in there. She said that the sun was coming. And she was right. It came, in more ways than one.
Hang in there, mamas. Wishing you so much sun. It is surely coming.