Tuesday, January 17, 2012

When Bad Days Are Normal, Censoring Is Optional.

What is a 'blog'?

Well, it's like an online journal, except it has people reading it, which means I end up censoring what I write and not saying some of the things I may be more game to if it was truly for my eyes only. I don't do 'journalling', though, I'm not sure why, or how blogging is different. I think it's the extrovert in me (or, as I am into being totally honest, it's probably got more to do with my deepseated need for validation - but anyway, that's all a bit heavy for a lighthearted blog like this.)

Today was another one of those bad days. The kind that drive me to blog, to spew it all out onto paper (or screen) and tell it like it really is... humour with a tinge of anger, because fuck! No-one told me it would be this bloody hard! We seem to go through patches where the good days are rare, and the bad days are worse than normal. I'm sure it's pretty common, I'm sure every parent feels this way sometimes, but here is what they are not likely to say out loud.

Sometimes, I don't like my children.

Sometimes, I like one of my children more than the others.

Sometimes, it feels like a long time since I liked a certain one of my children the best of all.

Sometimes, it feels like leaving would be a very easy thing to do.

Sometimes, I wonder if motherhood is really for me.

Sometimes, I am quite certain my children go to bed not having heard a single warm thing from me all day.

Don't misunderstand me. This is not how I feel all of the time. But certainly more than I would like. And the guilt that results from these feelings sets me off on an awful merry-go-round of useless, tired emotions, and useless, tired days.

But, here's the thing. It's normal to feel this way. I know it is, because I have very good and forgiving friends and when I whisper fragments of these feelings to them, they don't look at me in disgust. They nod their heads. And they share their own stories. And after some time in their company, I begin to feel as if I could go home and keep plugging away.

I read a blog post today that took my breath away. And not just mine, judging by how quickly it's gone viral. This mother has captured how millions of mothers around the world feel about parenting their own little ones, in such an honest, insightful way. And it got me thinking.

So, I wonder if it is enough to just catch glimpses of the good days in between all the shitty stuff that happens as we parent. I wonder if it's enough that my children experience me as being warm and loving, just sometimes. I wonder if they go to bed knowing that I love them, even when the words have not fallen from my lips that day.

Mothering is damn hard work. I joke about it alot, whinge about it more, but rarely do I stop and commend myself for doing the hard slog through the bad days as well as helping to create the good days. The good days are easy! Its the bad, heavy, bickering days that we need to be congratulating ourselves for surviving!

I may not be the best mother in the world. But I am most definitely the best mother for my children, and trying to get better all the time.

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