Superwoman sucks

While hubby was away during his birthday/soccer (which involved no soccer) weekend, I came to a realization.  I gotta relax.  Yep, you heard it here first.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, I have limitless potential and I’ve learned my capacity is huge but I have waited to long to be a parent, I seriously want to take the time to appreciate what I have, not worry about what I DON’T have and what I CAN’T do.  Sometimes our culture promotes the alpha mum image to the extreme.  Look, you too can be a sex goddess and have a slamming body at 40 something and be a career woman and be a mother and have an immaculate house.  You just need a personal trainer, a nanny, an assistant, a housekeeper, a mobile esthetician, a party planner and 8 more hours in your day.  Don’t eat, don’t sleep and multi-task every waking second.  I’ve been feeling like shit cause I can’t seem to wake up and be perfect.  I start thinking about all the things I HAVEN’T done yet and TIME is running out.

So I have to either shift my attitude or become a meticulous planner.  Uh, err, meticulous planner – not really my forte, but I can learn.

First of all, I was getting a little lonely and bored, so I called arranged to a dog walk with a friend of mine who has 2 kids of her own.  It rained all day, so that was off.  Another friend of mine who is undergoing a divorce called me in crisis.  I invited her over for dinner.  So I went out to buy pizza and wine.  Later, she  called to cancel.  So the bottle of wine was all mine.  Alas, I only had one glass.  At least the remote was mine.  I had devised a plan that if I attached a sheet over the blinds in K’s room, then maybe just maybe he would sleep in and I could stay up late.   Of course, that night was the night he woke up in the middle of the night for the first time in months.  He woke up wet and cranky.  So I was up at 3:30 and did the fastest diaper and outfit change ever.  I thrust him back into his bed, and almost thought I had gotten away with it, and was composing my award speech when he started screeching 4 minutes later.  Somehow the soft rattle I had given him at bedtime (which I neglected to retrieve) had worked its way underneath him and he was protesting like the princess who couldn’t sleep with the pea under her mattress.   Once I solved that problem, only a bottle of milk would lull him back to sleep.  I was reminded of all the early mornings we had spent together and frankly, it was really peaceful and quiet and I didn’t mind being up at all.   I didn’t feel tired or resentful, I just felt calm.  It was just me and him in the half light.  I flashed back to his 5th night on earth when I thought I might have to give him back and all I wanted was to soak in the gaze from his dark eyes. I wanted that moment to last forever.

Clearly, he was reminding me how inflexible I was.  He was telling me to slow my roll.  Or else, I might lose something infinitely more precious than money or a sunshade.  I AM capable of accomplishing a great deal, but not when I am feeling overwhelmed and incompetent.  I had given advice to my friend who is not coping well with her impending divorce.  I had told her to give herself credit for what she HAD done and that her life was precious and worth fighting for.  She is so stuck  in grief and what she thought she had.  An illusion.  She doesn’t know who she is anymore and she needs to recreate herself.  Find a new dream and a new way of being in the world.  Sound familiar?  And that’s something I do know about, so I need to be telling myself the same thing.

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9 thoughts on “Superwoman sucks

  1. Mrs. Spit had a great post recently in which she realized the same thing. It’s a lesson I sometimes I have to remind myself of, but it’s so true. Funny how K set you straight on things, eh?? ; ) Hope you enjoy your weekend with him.

  2. You are sooooooo right. In a recent chat with my best friend, we decided that multitasking is evil. Along the same lines… Just another way we keep telling ourselves we can get it all done, if only we are properly organized. And that’s bullshit.

    I’ve taken to refusing to leave the house unless absolutely necessary. I mean walks and things are ok, but not errands and just outings for outings’ sake. If that makes sense. Reminds me of something a woman said at our circle this weekend: sometimes the most radical thing you can do is stay home. I really believe that in this mothering life – it helps keep the focus on what is really important (ie the sacred relationship with our children) and away from what is not (ie shopping, feeling inadequate, trying to keep up with expectations). So we are doing a lot of that.

    I love that you are able to extend your experience to your friend who is divorcing – you are probably a real beacon for her.

    xoxo

  3. That early morning bottle, when you’re not stressed and you are just enjoying K, THOSE are the moments that make all the rest of it worth it. So yeah, if you can find a way to capture more of them, DO IT!!!

  4. I want you to bookmark this post and read it at least once a week. Heed your own words. Sometimes we are so good at KNOWING what to do, but DOING is the hard part.

    I always loved those, just before dawn moments, when the only sound was my son slurping his bottle, and making those little noises that mean contentment.

    There were weeks where I thought that certainly being “just” a mom would rot my brain and would lead to a nothing life. I had countless arguments with husband about the lack of a spotless house (like HIS mother had) and toys not put away before we crashed at night. There were times I wanted to kick him to the curb with a pointed shoe. Now that my boys are self sufficient, they actually have told me that I was the one that made them feel that all was right with the world. In essence I gave them that carefree childhood, where things that go bump in the night will be taken care of and they could just be kids. It was a wonderful thing hearing that. Now, husband sighs that the house is pretty quiet. Yep. It’s finally clean, but now it is more of a house than a home.

    • You know what’s funny? This morning I took the baby and the dog and a bag and headed over to a fruit and vegetable store cause I couldn’t just go for a walk without thinking of all the grocery shopping that needed to be done. And then I thought, the dog was not getting enough of a walk. Then maybe after I bathe and feed the baby we can jet over to Costco or Safeway and pick up some chicken, etc. Sigh. I didn’t. I put him down for his nap, nuked some lunch and I am attempting to do the little things around the house that never gets done.

  5. Don’t forget to ask your husband to bring home takeout or pick up gorceries on the way home. Or have him come home first, put the baby to bed and then one of you go out for groceries…

    Also just parenting a new baby is all a person can realistically do at the beginning. It’s F-ing exhausting. No one should feel like that have to make dinner, clean etc especially when the baby is young.

    Take it easy.

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