Maybe it is because I haven't had 3, consecutive, hours of sleep in FIVE years...or, maybe it's because my day usually starts with someone staring in my face, at 6AM, asking me to wipe their butt or to get them a stick of cheese. I am not really sure if I can pinpoint when my tipping point is triggered. I can honestly tell you, every day I start out REALLY wanting to have enough patience to deal with all of the screaming, crying, whining, boogers, crap, hitting, kicking, spitting, biting, tantrums, messes...but every night I fall asleep feeling guilty and wondering HOW IN THE WORLD I can allow 3 little angels to turn me into such a BEAST??!!
So, my name is Jenny...and yes..I am a yeller. I don't want to be, but I am. I don't just start off yelling...it is normally after telling my son 10 times to sit down while eating his dinner. Or sometimes it's because my daughter has removed her diaper for the 5th time in one day and smeared shit all over her closet doors. I don't know. I don't want to do it. It just happens, and to be honest...my kids seem to pay a lot more attention to me when I actually do loose my cool.
Before having babies it was SO easy to judge moms who would pinch their kids in Target, just to get them to stop harassing each other in the cart. Or maybe it was the neighbor who would threaten to leave her son in the driveway if he didn't climb into his seat RIGHT THEN!!! It might have been a friend who would yell at her kids, "If everyone doesn't stop bothering at me, I am going to have to lock myself in the pantry!!" while attempting to have a phone conversation. But now...I understand.
A lot of people will say...It must be soooooooooooooo easy to be a stay-at-home mom! All you have to do is keep the house clean and play with your kids! You get to hang around and watch Oprah, eat bon bons and pant your toenails. Wow, wouldn't that be a DREAM JOB?? What they don't understand are the emotional battles we fight daily within our selves just to try to balance all of the crazy situations we encounter!!
Lets talk about WHY a day, in a mom's life, might be emotionally draining.
#1. We clean CRAP, literally, probably 20% of the day. Between wiping butts, cleaning bathrooms or picking up dog doo in the yard, our shit radar is on FIRE.
#2. MOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMMMMMYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!! Is the most used word in the house. Gosh, it's amazing how one little word can be so amazing, beautiful and SO incredibly annoying at the same time.
#3. Everyone seems to have selective hearing. It might be easier just to tape record yourself and hit play. How many times can one person ask a child to put on his shoes before they get aggervated? Seriously, W.T.F.
#4. We look like homeless people. We wear our snot-sleeved shirts, faded black yoga pants and greased back pony tails out, and believe this to be totally acceptable for daily excursions.
#5. We actually try to reason with toddlers.
#6. Strollers, car seats, diaper bags, snack packs, hand sanitizer are all things we have to prepare before even leaving the house.
#7. The Witching Hour - What a total asshole.
The list could go on, because frankly...although it is the most AMAZING job in the world, one in which I thank God every night to have the privilege of doing...it is the HARDEST job, in which there is no training, preparation, or most times, recognition.
"Mommy Guilt" sucks...and it happens to us all. But if you are ever lying in bed at night, wondering if little Johnny will remember how you snapped at him for trying to finger the dog's butt, just remember we are all human. If we didn't experience that guilt, maybe we wouldn't strive to be better moms. Maybe it's the guilt that helps us to change our behaviors, see what is really important and helps us to not sweat the small stuff.
Instead of worrying about what you DIDN'T do today, start remembering what you did do. Laundry, cleaning, cooking, just getting all the kids dressed and teeth brushed deserves a high five!! So maybe you lost your shit, yelled at your son, then took a shot of tequila at lunch. We all have our moments. You're not alone and you are not a failure. It's our mistakes that make us stronger. It's not an easy job, but it's the best job, and one in which you might not hear a daily "Thank You," but one which will pay out the biggest bonus in the end.