Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Mother's Lament and/or A Spiritual Journey

The words felt like big chunky things stuck in my throat. So when I dislodged them, they fell so hard out of me, they broke a dam. Tears rushed my eys.

"I feel so desperate," my head hung down in the yellow light of the kitchen, "I feel so desperate for time alone." The whispered words raw against the darkness framed in the windows. I could barely look at you.

"I'm running on empty. I feel so out of gas that even when someone takes him. I'm so far below 'E' that it doesn't even change it. I still feel so in need."

The truth made me feel ashamed. 

I went to the bookstore the other day. I used to browse for hours, a kind of lazy meditation. This time I whizzed passed the random sections that used to amuse me, in lieu of what I came for: Reprieve via the Parenting Section. I have no time for languid browsing. Another thought: To mourn this is a waste of time.

The past is the past. It IS a compilation of memory and our feelings about those memories. It no longer exists.

The future is an illusion. F**k the future. I can not sit around waiting for my babies to grow up before I start living again.

I choose to live in The Now.

But how? My spirit is limping.

I imagine myself posting quotes on my mirror (and I'm paraphrasing here because I don't feel like googling these exact quotes so here's my approximations):

"the measure of a man is not how he does during the good times, but how he reacts during the challenging ones"

"think not of all the ways something can not be, but instead think of all the ways that it might be"

"think not that something is a hindrance or a problem, but instead as a challenge."

I do not tack these on my mirror though. Instead

I buy a book called "Buddhism for Mothers of Young Children." I'm thinking (praying) a little spirituality might keep me steady. I read it in the bath. I cancelled all my Real Housewives shows on my DVR. I am looking for the time. I played Pandora all day today and felt better, a soft guitar makes pouring the fresh pureed carrots into the blue ice cube trays seem poetic and light. I try to rearrange my thinking: Every moment is a moment for me.

Dax holds me in The Present. He requires me to be there almost every second. It's exhausting. It's exhilerating. It simply IS. And it IS NOT changing. I've never been in a tough place that I didn't want To Leave. This parenthood thing. This is different. I don't want out. (Obviously).

But...if I am to come out of this thing buoyant and glowing...

How can I stand the standing still? The most precious pain of The Present?

12 comments:

starnes family said...

Oh, I can relate. We have 3 kids and I have a traveling husband. I am home with them and also work part time. I feel like I never stop. Ever.

But.....when I do get breaks.....and I allow them as much as possible......I love the following:

1. going to a movie alone - no friends, no need to please anyone with chitchat or small talk.....just me and some really unhealthy food.

2. read - I read nearly a book a week......people always ask where I get the time......I watch almost no TV

3. sleep - husband often allows me to sleep in on the weekends b/c he's gone several days of the week, especially during his "busy" time, which is right now

We, unfortunately, do not get a lot of time for us as a couple (rarely get babysitters). For this reason, our kids go to bed earlier than most. 7pm for the 3 and 5 year old. 8 for the 10 year old. Then, it's OUR time. Wine, music, US. No kids. You have to take advantage of what you can!

Hope my suggestions are a tiny bit helpful. You're on the right track......you're searching for the balance.....and you'll find it soon enough. Hang in there!

Laura Seymour said...

you are not alone (uh, no pun intended). you are searching for balance, and you are doing the right thing-look for it, do things for yourself, allow yourself breaks. also? allow yourself to feel these feelings. they are ok. they don't make you a bad person-or a bad mom.

all of this is a balancing act, and some of us have more balls in the air while trying to do that act, and we're all struggling to stay atop the high wire. guess what? we'll make it. :)

Darcy said...

starnes: Well I certainly feel ashamed being that I only have ONE baby and you have THREE!!! How do you do it? In my head, I feel like I want three, but then when I have nights like this where i break down, I think ONE, ONE baby is enough :-)!

I do need to curb television. Not that I watch a lot, but sometimes one hour per day is a lot, especially right now. So I knuckled down on my DVR recently. It was easier than I thought.

Laura: thank you so much for the kind words. I think I do feel hard on myself about feeling so mucky sometimes. I love my little guy so much, but lately I feel just completely spent. I used to get so much time alone, this adjustment has been hard. thanks for the encouragement :-)

Holli said...

I feel for you Darcy because had my daughter lived I would have felt the exact same way you feel. It's normal and natural and I know all of my friends have felt the same way you are now. I know that doesn't make it easier but it might make you feel less alone in your thoughts.

Darcy said...

Holli: it makes me feel shameful to be feeling like i want time alone at all when i hear about the loss of your daughter. i am so sorry Holli.

starnes family said...

Don't get me wrong. TV is not bad. TV can be really good. Any release from "normal" life is good. I prefer to read most of the time, but don't think there are many Real Housewives episodes I haven't seen.

Do what you have to do. Everything else will fall into place.

Promise.

-Starnes :)

Darcy said...

starnes: oh, yes, real housewives of beverly hills? yeah, definitely NOT deleted! i'm pretty sure i want TO BE Kyle Richards ;-)

Erica said...

New lifestyle, ugh, growing pains. You are not alone. I think this is quite "normal".
I knew going back to work created instant balance. And yes, the Job drives me nuts, makes it hard to feel like I can get it all done, but it does give balance. It gives me purpose other than Grant and I really like that.
Do you have a sitter? I wish I lived closer so I could help you find some respite.
*Hugs*

Darcy said...

erica: it's so funny you mentioned a sitter because we were JUST talking about that. I just feel that sometimes we need just that: RESPITE! I don't know why, but lately it's really hit me hard. Maybe it's because he's much better on his own now and doesn't need my CONSTANT attention, but lately, I've been like, 'give me some time alone!'
YES, i do wish i had more family here to give us some babysitting, I would trade to. I love my family. I love you and would love to spend more time with Grant :-(

CalKet said...

Oh Darcy! What a lovely writer you are, and what a straight to the heart topic here. I find myself beginning so many sentences with: "You know I love being home with Michelle, but...".

It is strange to feel an overwhelming desire to be everything to this little person, and to love every second of it, but to also have a need that grows greater every day for some peace.

I try to let go of guilt, and remind myself that to our babies...we are everything. We are perfect. We give them everything they could need because we are their only Mamas. (Or less inspirationally, as I tell my husband - she's only a baby, she doesn't know any better!)

Christine M (M&M)

Darcy said...

oh my gosh CHRISTINE!!!!

I had no idea that was YOU!!!!!!

Oh hurrayyy!!!!! I am so glad to have met you :-)!

Phoenix said...

I think this is a beautifully honest post that seemed absolutely necessary for you to write and for others to hear - I'm sure every mother goes through this period and the more she stifles it or feels guilty for having these thoughts and feelings, the worse it gets.

Let go of the guilt, begin trusting yourself to ask for what you need, and maybe things will get better.

Hugs and love,
Tracy

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