I felt like a bad mom today… And a bad wife… And a bad friend…
I even burnt the split pea soup, so you might as well add ‘bad cook’ to the list.
I should have known it was going to be one of those days the minute I woke up. I awakened to the desperate cries of a very unhappy little boy. He had woken up to the very uncomfortable feeling of poop squishing out of his diaper and up his back.
There should be some kind of rule in the universe against this. Like the Mom’s Law of Thermodynamics: blow-outs shall not befall a baby before the warmth of 6am.
But instead, my day followed something a little closer to Murphy’s Law. (Which brings a random thought to my head… Who was Murphy and why did the poor guy get such a horrible law named after him? I mean, ‘If something can go wrong, it will go wrong’? Poor Murphy. I doubt he deserved that kind of legacy).
Anyway, while grocery shopping, I was the one who grabbed an egg carton… that held a broken egg…that messed up the register. And I’d grabbed over-ripe bananas that broke off the stem the minute the cashier grabbed for the fruit. And I’d accidentally mixed up organic veggies (for Brady) with the cheaper veggies (for me and Nate), which caused confusion and a bit of chaos. (Maybe a bit too much confusion and chaos if you ask me…).
“You’re on a roll today, aren’t you?” the cashier asked rather sarcastically.
As if to say, “Oh, we’re not finished yet,” Brady began to scream at the top of his lungs. They were happy screams, in his defense. He’d picked up on the fact that the cashier was ignoring his cute little smiles and laughs, unlike everyone else in the store; and so he obviously came to the conclusion that an ear-splitting, excited scream would bring her around. Everyone in the store stared, I’m pretty sure we destroyed the hearing aid of the elderly gentleman behind us, two other babies in nearby aisles decided to join in, and the cashier hissed, “See what you’ve started!”
Normally I probably would have turned beat red and hastily made an exit. But I was too busy thinking about poor Murphy and how he must have had a much worse day than mine. So I just smiled absentmindedly and waved in sympathy at the other moms who now had screaming babies too.
Going home was even worse though…
Lately I’ve kind of felt like I’m drowning. I’m trying to sort through summer clothes, while washing fall clothes, while keeping up with day-to-day laundry. The house has to be cleaned for piano lessons, which I need to prep for. Brady is eating solids (but not the solids we’re usually eating), so meal planning just got a whole lot more interesting. And after long days of playing and cuddling, I usually fall into bed exhausted, ignoring emails that need to be replied to. When I do reply to emails, most times I’m saying that while I’d love to hang out, I just really can’t right now. This leads to some friends being hurt, especially when I took so long to reply in the first place. 😦
“Sending an email takes two minutes, Nicole, ” you might be thinking. I know, I know! But somehow, when I’m that tired, the thought of putting together a logical sentence feels painful.
And my wife status? I feel as though I don’t have anything to give emotionally some days. I want to be the bubbly, encouraging girl that my husband married; but I just don’t feel it some days. I’m tired physically, but – after giving so much to Brady – I’m also tired emotionally. So after being bubbly with the baby all day, there’s often only the tired, cranky version left come evening.
Being a mom is tough most days, but – at the same time – the good always outweighs the bad. I always say that Brady’s smile is better than caffeine… 🙂 No matter how exhausted I am in the morning, the sight of his chubby cheeks and ear-to-ear grin puts the spring back in my step. But some days? Some days, the bad, the hard, and the tired just kind of pile up (like those never-ending piles of laundry) and leave a mom feeling like maybe she doesn’t have this.
Maybe she’s not the mom, wife, and friend that she should be. That she wants to be…
But here’s the thing… We moms are going to make mistakes. And, although we often forget it, we are only human. It’s completely normal to be a new mom and to feel overwhelmed sometimes. To wonder how in the world you’re going to get everything done while still putting your precious bundle of joy first. And sadly, your availability to ‘hang out’ or chat with friends usually suffers too, just as it’s tough to adjust to wife and mommy.
So thank goodness for the way these rough days often end… My tough day ended with two chubby arms around my neck and a curly head lying on my shoulder. One extra-long snuggle with him before his bedtime helped wash all the uncertainty and frustration away.
I kissed my little guy goodnight and gently lay him down in his crib. And as I tiptoed out of his room (dodging a pile of laundry), I smiled to myself. I am a good mom, and a good friend, and a good wife. I don’t need a perfectly clean house or neatly folded laundry. This joyful, healthy little boy is all the proof I need. 🙂
Tomorrow is a brand new day. I’ll do my best to reach out to a friend. Maybe I’ll make a dent in the laundry. I’ll make being the world’s best wife and mom my top priority, as I always do. And in the end, I’ll try to focus on the love I have for my little family. I can only do my best. That IS good enough!
And guess what? Your best is good enough too! 🙂