Monday, October 19, 2009

Post #100

I've learned a few things in my (almost) 6 years of being a Mom. I AM human. And only 1 person. There is a limit of what I can do each day. Physically. Mentally. Emotionally.

I thank my lucky stars that I can stay at home with our kids. Not everyone gets that choice/chance. And in these hard economic times, I'm thankful my husband's paycheck is providing for our family. (Despite the long hours he has to put in most days.)
(Maybe I should add, I'm not writing this to get pity from anyone. I simply write to free myself, clear my head, get it off my chest.)

I used to think that I needed to be perfect in order to be a good Mom. It was a frustrating battle I was quickly losing. I can't think of anything else I'd rather do than stay at home with our 4 kids. But truth be known, it isn't always a piece of cake. Some days it seems we barely make it thru the day. Other days are filled with happiness, contentment, joy and pure pleasure. Some days we're running on a full tank. Other days we run on low. Some days the tank is empty.

Deep down I knew what I needed. At the time, I felt like it was something I wanted, not REALLY needing. I felt I was being selfish - Wanting just for me. In all reality, it was just for ME. But everyone would benefit.

I needed 'me' time. And I needed 'me and him' time.

I thought good Mom's didn't need breaks away from their kids. Good Mom's certainly didn't need help from someone else; if you were good, you could do it all. I missed many chances to be alone, or alone with him... because I felt I was a 'bad' Mom, for leaving my kid behind. I quickly realized while I was trying SO hard to be perfect, I was really turning into something I wasn't proud of. Someone I didn't want to be as a wife or a mother.

Last month was the breaking point for me. It looked so bleak and dreary. The prior weeks left me hanging onto a breaking piece of thread. But life doesn't stop. I would fake a smile, swallow those big lumps in my throat and carry on. A good Mom doesn't show weakness, or admit defeat. If you read this previous post, you'll know what happens next.

For almost a week it was just me and him. It wasn't the 'romantic' setting like our honeymoon, since his work took up much of the daylight hours. But we were alone. And at times I was alone too. And you know what? It felt so good. And that guilty feeling about leaving the kids behind... it was gone by the time we crossed over the WI state line. We had time to talk about the big things. We had time to talk about the little things. We had time to just sit and not talk at all. Just enjoying the moment. And in those moments I realized so much. About being a wife. And about being a good Mom.

Most importantly, I came back a 'new' Mom. Refreshed, refueled, recharged. It doesn't mean all our days since have been perfect. My kids are just as human as I am. I've already snuck off for more alone time (at the grocery store, but I was alone). But I know that a good Mom is NOT necessarily a perfect Mom.

A good Mom can and does lose her cool, her patience's, her sanity, her head.. but she is willing to admit when she does. A good Mom knows she needs to re-fuel her tank more often than she realizes. Time alone is not a want. It's a need for a good Mom. A good Mom may get knocked down. But a good Mom will always get back up, stand tall, brush the dirt off and start over. Many, many times until the job is done.

I've learned that just like kids, every Mom is different. What works for one might not work for another. And just because one doesn't do 'this', or someone does 'that'.. doesn't mean anything. I don't feel I'm a 'bad' Mom to my 4 kids, not even close. But I realized I can be a better Mom if I take care of me. Doing what ever it takes to recharge my batteries. Because if you have kids.. you know you go thru lots of batteries!


  1. Well said :) I am so looking forward to an entire weekend away this weekend! I haven't done that EVER, and while I feel a little guilty, I am giddy about the freedom I'm going to have. And while it wasn't my plan...Jason is going to get a chance to experience just what I go through living/talking/breathing the needs of our children day after day. Like you said, I wouldn't change it for anything, but a break is warranted once in awhile. Good for you!

  2. I completely agree with Amber, well said, well put and I feel exactly the same way! You are a great Mom in my eyes and I am sure in everyone elses:)

    Amber-I am SO jealous!!!! Where you going?

  3. WOW! I know what you mean. I think kids would prefer a good mom then a perfect mom. When mom has time to herself, it helps with the kids. you seem to restock your patience. When my kids were gone for a week camping with g&g, by the time they got home, I felt like a new mom.
    The first time I realized that I needed, no, deserved some "me" time, I felt so guilty. Needless to say, I don't feel that way anymore. :)

  4. I have nothing to said it perfectly!!

  5. Great post. I needed to read this today. I am always down on myself as a mom. I haven't had any me time in a while and can tell I am over due.

  6. I keep telling John while he hugs me, "I don't even know what I need." And I don't. But you're probably right, I need time to myself without having to duck when the phone rings, and cross my fingers that it's not the school nurse calling. I need more than a couple hours. Preferably a couple days, but I don't see that happening any time soon so I get more frustrated and a worse headache and more crabby. My batteries died last week and I still haven't gotten to recharge them. Today came close, but all my reserves drained out when I had to pick up Joel from school.
    Whine whine whine. Poor me, right?

  7. Every GOOD mother needs time to herself! I don't think more of moms who have never been away from there kids at all. I dont find that a great accomplishment. No reason to feel guilty to have time to yourself. And like you said you feel refreshed! Good for you!

  8. Wonderful post/thoughts, Heather. I remember those days... it does get better, at the cost of some of the precious times you're enjoying with your young ones now. I think you're doing well just to analyze your needs/their needs/his needs... etc.

    Hang in there! You too, Jenny...