Today, I’m tired of being a mother.
I’ve always wanted to be a mother. I’ve always looked forward to it. When I was a teenager, I got attached to my Baby Think It Over and didn’t want to give him back to my Family Studies teacher.
I like to be needed.
I like to take care of things.
Even PH’s Quidditch team has voted me their “Quidditch mom.” I already have refreshments ready for practice next week, and I’m going to make sure they’re wearing sunscreen. I may get a shirt.
However, there’s another side to me. I warned PH about it before we got married, but I think he already knew it:
I have a strong need to be cared for.
I am an only child. I like to be doted on, to be spoiled a bit. I like to have someone to lean on. Luckily, PH was always very good at that. He took care of me, I took care of the animals/baby, and it worked.
Over the last year, it hasn’t been working so well.
Overall, PH has been doing better. He stepped up wonderfully when I was sick, taking over a lot of the parenting while I slept, but it took its toll on him. As my functionality improved, he collapsed into a dip that he’s only just starting to emerge from. When he is in a dip, all of his physical and emotional energy are devoted to staying alive. I become the only functional parent and I still have to work at two jobs. I feel like my entire life from dawn to well after dusk is consumed by the overwhelming needs of others.
Owl needs me to get up in the morning. Owl needs me to play with him. Owl needs me to pull down his pants even though he is perfectly capable of doing it himself but needs the parental care and attention. The house needs me to wash its dishes and sweep its floors and clean its counters and scrub its toilet. Then my dog training clients need me. PH needs my love and support. Then work needs me.
And boy, how does work need me.
I’m not sure what is more demanding, my three year old or my job. In a strange turn of events, this particular workplace perceives me as competent. Since all my workplaces since 2007 had considered me to be a useless waste of space, I find this turnaround both flattering and bewildering. I didn’t mind being asked how to do insanely simple tasks, because it felt so good just to be needed instead of hated.
But with no one to actually take care of ME, I’m crumbling under the weight of it all. I’ve given and given and given until I’m hollow and still more is needed so I’m starting to just hand out pieces of myself and I’m not being gracious about it.
I’m losing my ability to handle it. I resent having to put on Owl’s shoes on the days when he wants me to do it. Sometimes I snap at him and make him do it himself anyway, even though I know that this really isn’t about shoes (Owl is Mr Independent and loves to do things by himself, so if he wants help it’s usually because he’s feeling lonely or insecure in some way, probably because Mommy has turned into a resentful ball of snark).
I’m no better at work.
Don’t know why your user profile has corrupted on your laptop? Neither do I. No, I don’t feel like fixing it for you. I am not an IT person, just someone who knows how to use Google. Google the solution. That’s what I always do. No, I don’t really feel like showing you how to do something that I’ve already shown you three times. I realize that you’re new, but I still don’t have the patience.
Today, I lost it completely.