Thursday, March 27, 2008

Compys, baby birds & me

Do you remember in Jurassic park when the compeys show up? You know, they are small & look kinda cute? Then they start getting closer, making chirpy sounds & looking at the guy curiously...and then one jumps up & takes a bite. Then another, and another and soon they are swarming all over him & he goes down screaming, being eaten alive one tiny bite at a time?

Yeah well instead of the guy it's me & instead of the compeys it's my kids.

My other favorite analogy is baby birds in a nest when the momma comes home. She's tired from flying around finding food for everyone & just wants a break. But all she gets is a bunch of screeching beaks demanding more, more, MORE!

Obviously I'm not doing so great right now.
I hate feeling like this. I get so overwhelmed by it all that I just want to disappear.

Every time I hear "mom" I want to hide. I've been known to throw a blanket over my head & sit there, hoping nobody will notice me. You know, the I-can't-see-you-you-can't-see-me delusion that kids have? Yeah, that's rubbed off on me.

There's laundry all over the house. My kitchen is a disaster area. The kids have been super grumpy. (Eli in particular has been extra aggressive.) And I'm PMS'ing which exacerbates my depression. Mrfph!! (don't know what that means, it just felt like the thing to write)

I'm having a very hard time getting anything done. I'm having a hard time not screaming at the kids every 10 minutes. And I don't mean the "I told you to pick up your ___ 3 times!" kind of screaming. I mean "Why do you do this to me?" "Why can't you just leave me alone?" "I wish I could go back in time 6 years!" "Don't touch me, don't talk to me, don't look at me, I don't want to know you are here!!!" kind of screaming. Sometimes I really think like that & frankly it freaks me out. I don't want to be this kind of mom. I want to be the one who sees the teachable moments in situations & calmly takes advantage of them. I want to be the one who can be an example of how to react well to difficult situations.

I have a friend at my old church that I was jealous of before I met her. Gorgeous woman, skinny, curvy, great hair, loves the lord, nice hubby...she's got it made right?

Wrong. She was actually in a huge battle with depression during the time I was envious of her. She was going through absolute hell everyday. Sometimes it would get so bad she'd curl up in a ball, rocking in a corner & wouldn't talk for days.

After I got to know her I was amazed at all this & felt sorry for her. What a hard thing to go through! And all that time I thought she had it all.

A few years later she had a little boy - not too long after I started on my depression meds. And now it's come full circle & I'm envious of her again. Not like last time, I'm not guessing her life is fan-fiddily-tastic or anything but I wish my depression & having my kids had happened in the same order hers did.

You see, she got her issues worked out before she had children. I didn't even know about mine until after the twins were born. Having kids makes depression so much harder, more complicated. It's not just you to worry about, you've got these little people depending on you & the pressure is enormous. My funks usually don't last more than a couple of days but it's so hard on my kids. Sam especially, my sensitive boy, gets hurt so easily by the things I say.

And then there's the guilt. I think of those families who are have kids with cancer or other rotten diseases. Why can't I see my kids as the blessings that they are? Why can't I be happy with healthy, normal kids? Why can't I treasure every moment with them like I should? No I am resentful & think of them like compys or baby birds. How sad is that?

All that rambling to say I've had a crappy day.

So, how was yours?


Kalynne Pudner said...

Oh, Alane. I don't know whether to begin by saying "Bless your heart!" or answering the question about my day.

So having done the first, I'll do the second: It was oddly, remarkably, freakishly like yours! Except larger, because my kids are older. My 17-year old is telling everyone at the high school that he fell out of our van while I was driving, and I just kept going. In reality, we were arguing, and he -- to make a point with all due drama -- decided to jump out of the car. Thank God he got up! I pulled over and told him to get in (so I could take him to Urgent Care) and he flicked me off. His 11-year old sister was in the backseat, crying hysterically. He ran away to stay with friends (calling me to demand I pack and deliver a couple dozen specified items)...which I think is a very good thing, even as I agonize over what I did wrong as a mother to have arrived at this point.

But really, we do the best we can and count on God for the rest. Right? And if we can get a few funny stories out of it, so much the better.

Practically speaking, I always thought the best strategy was a hug (even a grin-and-bear-it type), with a sincere "Mommy's having a sad time right now, but it's not your fault. I love you and always will." Prepackaged humor can help -- like a sign you can hang in the kitchen or outside your bedroom door that warns "Beware of Crabby Mommy."

But I think you're spot on with the flesh-eating analogies. And the word "Mom" -- especially with the drawn out, crescendoing vowel and tonal drop for the final "m" -- may be the ugliest human sound ever produced.

Mari said...

Oh Alane - I'm sorry about your day. Mine wasn't great either, but in my case it wasn't kids - it was sick patients, their families and managers at work who were taking a bite out of me. At least I can get away from that for a while. :)
You say you want to see your kids as blessings... Well you do - you say you know they are. However - there is not a Mom out there who doesn't get tired and frustrated. There is no one who is always happy or has everything together. You are allowed your frazzled days too! I remember telling my daughter once that although I loved her so much, I really didn't like her very much at the time. If you have days like this, is it possible for you to go out for coffee with a friend at night? Sometimes just a little time away is so refreshing. I'm stopping now and am going to pray for today to be a better day for you.

Wani said...

I totally understand what you're going through! Not that its good for you to be having a hard time... but its good for me to know I'm not alone in seriously wanting to not be anywhere near my kids sometimes. No matter how much we do, no matter how hard we work to take care of them its never ending. There is always another meal to make, feed and clean up after. There is always, always more laundry piling up somewhere. There is always something. The responsibility we carry as moms is so overwhelming sometimes. I wish I had some meaningful words of wisdom (I can only think of things that are so cliche - and I know I get a little tired of the same thing: "This too shall pass"... "Treasure these times because they go by so fast"... etc, and they're all true, but not always helpful in times like this. I will say this: YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Being a mom is a hard, demanding job and sometimes we just have to stick it out through the rough times to make it to the sweet smiles that make it worth it.

Kate said...

I'm so sorry that you had such a crummy day! I'm sending hugs and prayers.

I am also sorry that everything that you have in your life compounded with your depression is getting you down. It's so hard-- depression steals your joy and even with meds sometimes it's still hard.

I also sometimes want to hide under a blanket and the DOG drives me crazy. She needs food once a day and to be let out twice, at least. How sad is it that on those days even that is too much? One sweet, low maintenance dog and I want to hide and scream at her for bothering me. Does that make you feel better? You're coping so well with SO much!

And if it helps you, my mom had a lot of days like you're describing and I turned out fine. Mostly. J/K. I know that she loves me and I grew up in a very loving and HUMAN environment. If anything it taught me about learning to deal with my emotions, which was good. You're a good mama.

I'm praying for you!

Megan (FriedOkra) said...

I think that just about any mother who says this post could NOT be found on her own blog one day within the next two weeks either doesn't have a blog or is lying through her teeth. We ALL feel what you're feeling. Motherhood is a full and rolling gamut of every emotion known to mankind, including the seriously bad ones. Hang in there, another one's gonna roll around shortly and you will look back at your bad day and know you handled it pretty darn well and it didn't make you or them complete monsters. Hugs - M

Sandra said...

Oh I'm so sorry about your day. Motherhood is tough at times and we all have our days.

Sending you hugs,

mylhibug said...

I am sorry that you had a crummy day, and I hope that it gets better soon. I know how it feels, being one that is now dependent on anti-depressant, anti-anxiety medicine. It sucks being dependent on it, but it sure the hell beats the alternative - you know the part where I hate myself and all that other stuff.

It does get better and your kids love you so much, contrary to how you might be feeling at the time. Does that make sense?

Anyway, I hope that you are feeling better and I will keep you in my prayers.

God Bless!

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