What No One Told Me About Mothering {Top 10}

No one ever tells you there will be days you hate it.
That mothering is the hardest job there is and 
I’ll be the first to admit I went back to work for awhile
because it was easier than being with them full-time.
Then the inability to be the mom I wanted
was compromised by being mom to so many others
so I came back home.
And now that summer’s here in full-swing
{i.e. school’s out}
those intense moments no one talks about
have hit full-force.
What no one told me about mothering…
1.  I will never feel good enough.  Surrounded by other moms who appear to have it together, seeing crafts and recipes and activities galore all over the internet, paired with my own insecurity complex means I never feel like I’m doing enough or being enough.  As a thirty-two year old college graduate with eight years teaching experience and six younger siblings, you’d think I’d have more confidence in myself.  But I don’t.
2.  Sometimes everyone is unhappy and there’s nothing I can do to fix it.  It never fails that the moment the baby starts wailing, the sisters kick it up a notch.  He’s hungry, they’re aggravating each other, and I’m yelling.  It’s a recipe for destruction and in the moments before the dust settles, I’m sure I’m the worst mom ever.
3.  I can be completely undone by a six year old.  Yesterday we both cried when she let loose in hysterics about the gift we made for her teacher.  I didn’t have it together for the last day of school and according to her, she was the only one who didn’t have a present for her teacher.  Wow.  Way to make me feel horrible.
4.  Sleep is an alternate universe.  I know I’ll sleep again.  There was a period of time between the two youngest and prior to the pregnancy insomnia, that I got a full night of sleep.  But I always forget what the newborn stage is like and how nothing would be better than an uninterrupted stretch that lasts longer than 90 minutes.
5.  Somedays I will have nothing left for my husband.  He’s great, he’s patient, and he helps.  But I’ve got nothing left for him at the end of the day and the last thing I want is any activity that involves touching because all I’ve done all day long is soothe and hold and rock.  It makes me feel so guilty.
6.  There’s no magic switch for potty training.  I don’t think my two year old is quite ready and I don’t think I can really handle one more responsibility right now, but between her and the baby I change at least 15 diapers a day.  Awful for the environment, disgusting for me.  I read articles and books and listen to other moms, and I think I can help her do this, but then I realize I’ll have to add mopping the floor to my daily list, and I pull out another pack of Pampers.
7.  Scheduling a baby is impossible.  We’re on day one of trying to consciously extend the time between nursing sessions.  It’s not working.  But what am I supposed to do when he starts crying before we leave Chic-fil-A and I’ve still got to go into Wal-mart or the dog will starve?  In the end, they both got to eat and I figured we’d try again at home.  So take that, Baby Wise.
8.  I will become a different person.  There was a time in my life when I cared a lot less about what people thought, when I knew I didn’t fit in with the in crowd, but what I had was right for me.  There was a time when I was confident in what I was pursuing and sure there would be a day when I’d be ready for my bigger dream.  Then I became a mom and what I thought would come so naturally was actually work and the child I thought would conform to me, tricked me into conforming to her.  I’m more introverted now, more cautious, more shaky, less confident.  Sometimes I find strength in my faith, in the promise that God has not forsaken me or left me, but sometimes I just want to crawl back into bed and forget that it’s not just about me anymore.
9.  There are times when I will really lose it.  I knew I had a temper. I just didn’t know how volatile it could be.  I hate when I yell at my kids.  I hate how ugly it makes them and me feel.  The truth is, I let their behavior dictate how I feel about myself, so when I lose it, it’s because I {again} am feeling insecure.
10.  I will feel so alone.  Even now, I’m debating about posting this.  Maybe I’m the only one who feels this way.  But I know that’s not true.  I know we can all talk a good game about enjoying every moment because these years are precious, but when your blinds are down and your doors are closed and you’re alone with your kids, do you really love it all the time?  It doesn’t mean I would trade my kids for anything, but sometimes, I don’t love every moment I spend with them.

Today I’m linking up with Angie at Many Little Blessings.  It’s amazing to me that she homeschools.  I’d love for her to post about how she can do that everyday without losing her cool.

Top Ten Tuesday at Many Little Blessings

8 thoughts on “What No One Told Me About Mothering {Top 10}

  1. Dear, dear, Lindsey.

    First of all: YOU ARE NOT A FAILURE.
    No, you're not perfect, but for heaven's sake, who is?!?

    All those moms who seem to have it all together…THEY DON'T. Not all the time. They're not perfect.

    Most of us bloggers put out our best, shining faces. We post pictures of our {clean} homes. We write about our {successful} recipes. We talk about our {happy} days as wives and mothers. What most of us don't share is that 99% of the time, our house is not really all that clean. We do not always make fantastic food that tastes and looks great. We often have really sucky days when nothing seems to go right.

    That's NORMAL. That's to be EXPECTED. We live in a SINFUL WORLD. And–this isn't the end of all things! We have eternity, in heaven, with Jesus, to look forward to.

    Plus–no matter how often you yell at your kids or refuse your husband or just plain lose it–Jesus has already taken away all that sin. Kaput. Done for. Gone. Outta here.

    Don't let it get you down, my dear. I know, we all have THOSE days. I hear ya. Despite not having kids, I hear ya.

    Don't forget: you might be a sinner, but you're a saint, too. You have the Holy Spirit in your heart. You are doing for your kids the bravest, best thing in the world: you are a stay-at-home mommy.

    I am so proud of you. So thankful, that you're doing this for your kids, because not only are you raising them to be a blessing to the world, you are raising them to be godly women and man and they will have an impact on the world for Christ one day.

    That is worth every dirty diaper, every temper tantrum, every crappy day you'll ever have.

    I know it doesn't seem like it right now. But you're in this with millions of other mothers. You all can do it. Hang in there.


  2. You are ABSOLUTELY not the only one with these thoughts and feelings. You are a wonderful mother in a multitude of ways, but mostly because at the end of the day your children feel loved and safe in the knowledge that you will continue to love them each and every day in the future.


  3. Reading this reminds me of how fragile my life felt as a mom to three who are all in a five year span of ages. My husband traveled most of the week, so he was always the good guy. In addition to not having anything for him, there were also times when I felt jealous of his job. I learned to do many things that were “his chores”, so when he returned and began to do them, I felt like he didn't think I could do as well as he could. We moved 5 times in 5 years too – and he was always at the new place so I had to make all the moving arrangements and deal completely with the movers. Also, I was either pregnant or nursing every time we moved. Then, at about the time I was settled in a part time job and the kids were in middle and high school (my expertise was early childhood – he was supposed to get them through to college!), he had brain cancer, and I was totally alone in parenting. How many times did I completely lose it? Couldn't count and don't want to remember them. But all the kids are near or over 30 now, and they all say I did a great job! So, it all works out, you know? Hang in there – your faith family is the best resource to help you through.


  4. Once again you've nailed it Lindsey! As for homeschooling, I think you could add #11. It would have to do with #1-10 all rolled into a really bad day of schooling and lots of guilt and tears for everyone.


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