I don’t know what it is – but since having children, I have never felt so much anger in all my life. Is it my kids? Of course not. Is it regret? …Kinda. Now, I’m not saying in the slightest that I regret having children. But, sometimes I feel so much pressure to be #blessed, and to ‘cherish every moment’ with my children when some days all I want to do is to take a long shower without a baby crying or go to the toilet and actually be able to finish my poo. Yeah, I just said poo – you can tell I’m a mother right?
There is no guilt admitting that sometimes we do like to reminisce about our lives before having children. How we took advantage of sleep and rarely appreciated how lovely it is to be able to drink our coffee hot.
Although people had joked to me about the hardship of having children, I hadn’t really thought how hard I would actually find it. Some days are good, but the majority are bad days. I have days when I can’t stand Holly constantly touching me or whingeing about the slightest bloody thing. Then I have days where I think breastfeeding is wonderful and her little smile can light up my entire day. Usually, there are more bad ones than good.
Now, I understand that the word ‘depressed’ can get thrown around a lot, especially when us mums lose our sh*t once and everyone thinks you’re DEPRESSED. I’m not depressed – I’m tired, worn out, fed up and sometimes I find myself sitting on my sofa, staring into space and thinking how wonderful it would be to have an all day spa day. That’s normal though, right?
When you become a mum, your life is no longer just yours. You share it with your children and you spend the next 18 or so years spending most of your day cleaning up after them, feeding them and trying to make them happy and content. It’s draining, and I’m an honest enough person to say that I do struggle… I am struggling.
I am so grateful to have two such wonderful kids, but I feel so much pressure to always be happy, to cherish every moment and to be grateful to have the gift of children which many people aren’t able to have. Time does go by far too quickly when you have children, they grow up right before your eyes and before you know it, you’re questioning whether you really have cherished every moment.
I spend far too many days moaning that my house is a mess, that we’re running late for something or that Holly won’t stop following me around the house like a lost dog. Are those the sort of things that, as a mum, I should be grateful for?
I do try my hardest each and every day to appreciate the little things which come with motherhood, whether that be Holly pouring her leftover Weetabix over her head, Alfie having one of his usual strops or moaning at Alfie for the 1000th time to wipe his wee off the toilet seat. All of those things, one day, I’ll look back on and laugh about with the kids – or at least that’s something I hope to eventually happen anyway.
It’s true that the moments we’re living now, are moments that we will never get back again. It’s true that it will be over right before our eyes without us even realising and you’ll wake up and wonder where all the time has gone and question why you wished certain days away. However, there also will be times when you’re up every hour in the night night-feeding, to then be woken up at 6 am by a child shouting “I’M BORED!” in your ear, when you’ll wonder why the hell you decided to have children.
No one cherishes every moment, and that’s okay. Some days, I’ll wonder how or why I have been blessed with two of the most beautiful, wonderful children, but they’re other days when I wonder whether or not I’m cut out for motherhood. It’s almost impossible to cherish the moments when Holly has completely trashed my living room, is screaming for 3 hours straight and feeding so much I think my nipples are going to shrivel up and die.
There is no shame to admit that we as mums struggle, or that we don’t cherish our children as much as we’re told to. There is no guilt in admitting that sometimes a little bit of help wouldn’t go amiss. Asking for a little bit of help or guidance in motherhood shows sheer determination you’re wanting to give your children the best of your ability, and if that means inviting someone over to watch the kids while you take a 30-minute nap, so be it.
Social media definitely plays a huge part in us mums questioning our abilities and whether or not we’re doing it right. A huge sense of self-doubt and envy comes dawning on us when Jane and her 3 kids are up, dressed, fed and out of the front door at 7 am whilst you’re still lounging in your pyjamas with greasy hair and your baby is running around with no nappy on, pissing on the floor at 12 pm. Social media is not real life.
If you’re a new parent, please know that you are not alone when you think you’re failing, that’s just a given in parenthood. There are some magical moments to come which you’ll be able to cherish forever, but also some sh*t ones – which you’re not at all obliged to cherish.