I never thought Motherhood would be so lonely.
I feel ashamed to say that I am or to even have something negative to say about it at all. Yes, there are so many blessings every day when you are a parent. Lochlan melts my heart and brings joy in a way no other entity on earth can invoke in me. But with that being said, it can be very lonely…the hours you are awake at night, the many moments of sleep deprivation where you still have to carry on and pay attention to what is going on because your child could get hurt from a falling lamp, or an outlet or the dog jumping on their abdomen or their fingers getting slammed in a door, or whatever else could happen. You’re just exhausted and the exhaustion takes over you and you can’t understand how you can carry on one second longer or survive the rest of the day without losing your mind and in that moment when you are at a loss you look at your child and they smile at you and that smile regenerates you in a way that nothing else can. It brings this burst of energy of love into your life.
But it is lonely and it is tiring and there are days you realize you haven’t spoken to an adult in over eight hours and you realize that you have lost sense of time and you lose your sense of self. The person you were is no longer there and you have to find your identity all over again. But there’s this little being constantly in need and you have to take care of your home, your family and then you have to remember to take care of yourself, because if you don’t take care of yourself you’re not going to be any good to anybody.
That has been a really hard lesson for me to learn.
I am a very giving person, a very nurturing, mothering type of person. I have always been that way. When I had my son I knew what type of Mom I wanted to be. I wanted to be very hands on and at home. I wanted to be calm and patient and nurturing and educate him and love him for who HE is and leave my expectations at the door, but it’s hard. It’s hard to be a good Mom sometimes. It’s hard to be always present. It’s hard not to take the easy way out and have someone else watch him for me.
When he was a couple of months old I had to go back to work to make money so we could get a place of our own and I realized that it was easier to work out of the house in a lot of aspects than being home with him. I could get out of the house and not be a Mom for a couple of hours, not be thrown up on, or pooped on or peed on or kicked or scratched. I could be an adult and sit in an office and have adult conversations and then come home and be with my family. But then I’d see my baby and realize that he had learned to hold a rattle that day or sat up and I missed it. And then the money wasn’t worth it to me. I didn’t want to miss out on all those moments. I wanted to teach him. I wanted to be there for him. I didn’t want to have to pay someone else to educate my son and watch him grow. Luckily, now our family is in a position where I can be home. David brings enough money into the house so I don’t have to work and I am so thankful for that. But because of the job he has sometimes he is gone for 15 hours a day and we barely get to see him. We are on opposite schedules. While Lochlan is up he is sleeping and vice versa. There are weeks that we go without much interaction. It’s hard for our relationship but at the end of the day it’s worth it to me, to us. It’s important for us for me to be able to take care of him. I do sacrifice aspects of my life. I am not as social as I used to be. I don’t paint as much anymore. I barely read books these days but I know that my son is taken care of and happy. In a couple of months to a year he will have different needs than what I give him right now. He won’t need me on the level that he does at this point in his life. I have to remember that a couple of years of sacrifice are worth a lifetime of health and a good foundation.
I still have to remember to take care of myself. That it’s okay to be selfish and say I need a break and admit that I’m tired and admit that I’m struggling and that it’s hard to be a good mom sometimes and that I don’t have all the answers and to ask for help when I need help. It’s very hard for me to ask for help and I’m trying to learn to not be so controlling about everything and not to be so scared to fail as a parent because I know I am going to fail. I am going to make mistakes. My son will be mad at me and not like me just like I did not always like my parents but that’s okay because that’s part of evolving and learning and growing. And just like my son is learning to make his way in the world and figuring things out, I too, as a 27 year old woman am trying to figure it all out and make my way and learn how to be a Mother and a friend, a partner and myself all at the same time.
So, I guess what I’m trying to say is I can’t let the loneliness overtake me because I have a choice in the matter. I need to get over my fear of failure and imperfection and step out and make my way as a parent and myself in this world and show my son that even with fear it’s okay to take chances in life but it’s important to remember to take care of your family and be there for them because at the end of the day without them nothing else matters. So with the loneliness being said my child is worth it all and I am so thankful that I get to be home with him.