Brutal Honesty About Motherhood....

>> Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I've got a newsflash for some of you.  Motherhood ain't easy.

Nothing else but motherhood can make you feel complete and total love for your child in one minute and then make you want to bang your head against the wall in the next minute.  Nothing else but motherhood can make you want to spend the whole day with your child, playing games, coloring, etc. - and then in the next minute make you wish that you could keep them locked in their room for the day so you can just catch a break.

Yesterday I had a really bad day.  A really, really bad day which started out in the morning before I took Nani to school and just never got better.  It was such a bad day that I completely shut myself off from everyone and everything.

I lost my temper with Nani yesterday morning.  I mean really lost my temper.  We're talking banshee-screaming, close to spanking losing my temper.  It was just one of those mornings where the not listening, the whining, and the disrespect just really got to me and I had had enough. 

After I screamed like a banshee, I shut down completely.  That's the way I am...I get so angry that I shut down completely....silent everyone.  I realize later how ridiculous it is - to give a 5-yr. old even a partial silent treatment.  But it was either that or spew words of anger that I know I can't take back.  Choosing limited conversation was the lesser of two evils - in my mind.

All day long I felt like a horrible mother.  How could I scream like that at her?  How could I just completely shut down like that?  The guilt just eats at me.  I cried all day yesterday, having internal conversations with myself - alternating between telling myself that I need to stop being so hard on myself and then telling myself -- she's 5 for God's sake.  How could you blow your top like that?  The stuff that I got so angry over was so stupid - in hindsight. 

Some mothers will never get to hold their children.  Some mothers are estranged from their children.  Some mothers have to watch their children die --- and I'm screaming at my child over a stupid hairbow.  How incredibly stupid is that? 

My friend, Robin, is so sweet.  She kept checking up on me yesterday -- phone calls, emails, and even a little surprise in my mailbox late last night.  I couldn't talk to her.  I knew she was reaching out, but I couldn't talk to her because I knew I would totally break down -- ashamed of my behavior.....and of hurting my daughter.  Not in a physical sense.

But I know what it's like to be yelled at for stupid stuff.  To have something so small blown so out of proportion.  I remember what it was like to be yelled at like that.  I hated that feeling and I hate that I made my own daughter feel like that today.  She didn't deserve my behavior. 

Sometimes I seriously wonder why God chose me to be a parent.


Truthful Mommy April 21, 2010 at 12:10 AM  

Sweetie, Obviously we have both been having a rough week (as I can tell from your post and you can tell from mine). WE are not bad Mommies...if we were, we wouldn't have cried about it and felt like such shitty assholes afterward.Everything is relevant and believe me, these things that may seem minuscule in hindsight can hold the weight of the world when piled one after another on your shoulders. It's hard being a Mommy...damn hard. SOmetimes I want to quit..just for a moment. It doesn't help that my husband is working out of town all week, every this single Mommy shit has got me hanging on to my sanity by a very small thread. I love my girls, as I know you do yours, with everything I am. I would never want to hurt them, physically or mentally. That's why my lions roar sent me into tears. Hearing the crazy bitch I had turned into made me think..oh my GOd! What am I doing? What must my girls be thinking? I'm glad I caught myself. It taught me to step back from the situation next time... and to re-prioritize. The problem is we get so caught up in all of the things we have to do that the kids are one more giant thing on that list... so, now I have been reminded that none of the other stuff really matters. They are my most important job but we all need a day off...even Mommies. Even if its just 30 minutes in the bathroom. Hugs right back at ya girl. If you ever need to unload some of that weight of your got a new bloggy sister friend in me:) You know where to find me!
Debi(truthful Mommy)

Suzanne April 21, 2010 at 4:55 AM  

You of course are not the first mommy to blow up. Be encouraged by the other mommy blogs out there that this is normal. Forgive, move on and enjoy friends like Robin, you understand you... :)

Here's to a better day!

Charity April 21, 2010 at 7:23 AM  

I hate days like that, I hope today is a much easier day for you. Thankfully kids can be very forgiving, goodness knows I have had to ask mine several times for forgiveness for loosing my cool.

Judy April 21, 2010 at 7:29 AM  

One of the things I have learned from being a mommy is that we're in this to learn to. Our children are helping to shape's two ways.

I hate the days that are hard, not because they are hard, but because I don't handle them as well as I should. I'm trying though. It's hard not to be furious when my oldest pushes my youngest, etc. Like Charity said, I am incredibly grateful for the forgiveness my children manifest towards me on a daily basis!

♥ Jennerific ♥ April 21, 2010 at 7:38 AM  

Amen sista!! Motherhood is hard ass sometimes. Something no one bothers telling you ahead of time... not that most of us would believe it anyway.
xoxo great big cyber hugs and kisses

Annette W. April 21, 2010 at 7:46 AM  

We all have bad days. Really. Some days we are ashamed...and others we place blame elsewhere. It's not just you!

Read your "about me" paragraphs again for encouragement!

A Lil Story April 21, 2010 at 8:32 AM  

There are definitely some hard days, (I do the shut down thing too) I yell sometimes and feel so bad about it after, but I am working on it... Corner-time has been working well so far. =)

Don't be so hard on yourself! God choose you because you are a fabulous mama- if you weren't, you wouldn't feel bad... Hugs to you!!


melonbelly April 21, 2010 at 12:11 PM  

umm...did I write this in my sleep and post it on your site? UGH. I HATE THAT I DO THIS! I don't do th silent treatment, but if I don't get my patience in check I think I should consider it. My three year old said one day, "mommy, please dont use your loud voice." Breaks my heart. I, too, remember what it was like to get yelled at over stupid things...I HATED IT!! I know I need to put myself in check!

That being said...You obviously realize that its not ok AND are not immune to the fact that you do it. You probably dont do it that often if it upsets you this much(at least thats what I think about my situation).

PS great friends are awesome. even when you cant talk about it...just knowing someone cares is sometimes all we need!

Aging Mommy April 21, 2010 at 12:47 PM  

Jennifer you write so poignantly and heart wrenchingly about how bad you felt yesterday that I was going "oh, ahhhh" all the way through reading it. Honestly we all have days like that, or if not a day then a few minutes or hours but however long it lasts you hate yourself for doing it, shouting at your child. It is always the little silly things that tip you over the edge and it really is hard being a Mom, listening to a child ask over and over again the same question and then cry and complain when the answer is still no is enough to drive anyone mad, now and again. So don't beat yourself up any more. When this happens to me I always, once I have calmed down, sit with my daughter and tell her how sorry I am, that I was wrong to shout but I got mad because of what was happening, although I know that was wrong. Our children need to know we are not perfect, that no one is and you know it's not a bad lesson to learn now for them that the world is not perfect and people can and will have bad days. Also I tell myself that talking it through like that shows my daughter the right way to behave when she knows she has done wrong.

I hope the rest of your week goes better.

Helene April 21, 2010 at 9:54 PM  

I love that you are real, Jen. That's why I enjoy reading your blog so don't sugarcoat anything, you say it like it is and you're not afraid to show your human side.

We all have days like that. You know I do. I scream and screech til the cows come home and then at the end of the day I feel wracked with guilt. But we all have our breaking point.

Tomorrow's another day...a fresh start. I hope it gets better!!!

~City Love... now, forever, always~ April 22, 2010 at 5:35 AM  

Keep your chin up, Mama.

We all lose our tempers.

We all have really really bad days.

Parenting isn't easy!!!

The wonderful thing about kids is that they don't hold grudges.

Apologize to your daughter, tell her you're sorry Mommy responded that way and you'll try to learn from your mistake and do better next time you're angry. Give her a great big hug.

Move on and be the wonderful Mama you are the other 99% of the time :o)


help4newmoms April 22, 2010 at 8:05 AM  

It's so interesting that you said that you remembered what it was like to be yelled at like that and how bad it felt... I totally get that. We kind of now understand our own Moms a little better when we blow up like that. At least I do. Anyway, don't get down on yourself, apologize (like you did) and take it for what it is - a sign. You need a break. Find a way to get some time to re-group. Eat egg sandwiches for a week and pay a sitter and go see a movie - by yourself. All moms need a break and when we flip out on little stuff it's because we need some space. Take it. You've earned it.

Bethany April 23, 2010 at 7:52 AM  

Any mama who says she's never lost her temper and yelled at her child is a doggone liar. Straight up.

I lose my temper... and with 2 boys who wrestle like bear cubs and never seem to hear me speak and a little girl who - I swear - has the complete list of everything you can do to drive mommy nuts under her pillow, it's more often than I'd like.

But, my God do I love them. So much so that I'd give my life for them. And when I do blow up, I always calm down and apologize and let them know I know it's not nice to do that to someone. And I always explain why I got so upset.

Life is a learning lesson for all of us. And your children can learn from your mistakes, too. Have you talked to your daughter about how terrible you feel? She'll understand more than you realize.

A big part of the reason I love my kids so much is that they never judge you and they really, truly love you unconditionally, like no one else can.

Denise April 23, 2010 at 8:30 AM  

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Raising a Happy Child April 23, 2010 at 5:17 PM  

Oh boy, I so totally could connect to this post. I've been there just recently - not exactly same way but it was the same "death by the thousand cuts" - blowup over something minor. But daughter is always so very miserable when I am angry with her that I cannot stay angry for long. In fact, I apologized to her for yelling, since it was really not warranted. (((Hugs)))

melaniet42 April 24, 2010 at 8:01 PM  

I've wondered the same thing, but clearly you're not alone. I have those moments too, and feel ultra-ridiculous for banshee-screaming at a two year old. But we get through it and hopefully learn from it (I'm working on the learning from it part still!).

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