This Work-Life Balance Thing Is A Big.Fat.Lie.
Bitches, if you are a parent and feel like you need to make a change, read this.
It’s a beautiful article written about the difference between being a family manager and being a family nurturer by the author over at www.handsfreemama.com.
I’ll let the piece speak for itself, but she really hit it on the head for me. Especially this week. As a working mom of two toddlers, I often feel stretched so thin that I am doing a shitty job at everything I do. It’s terrible to feel like you suck at everything you touch.
And I don’t even work full time.
I’ve been doing a lot of yelling lately. Buddy has been sick, and therefore not only exhausting me to the point of delirium, but sucking up all of the attention and leaving none for my Twee Destroyer. So she reacts to the unintentional neglect by acting like a total asshole.
The other issue is that they are both super needy, and on the days where Husband is working and I am single parenting I am having a hard time being in two places at the same goddamn time. It’s frustrating, I feel like a failure, and I just want to drink wine until I can’t remember my name.
After reading the above article, I analyzed the situation and realized a few things:
1. It’s always worse when we’re on a timeline. Sometimes it’s because I haven’t planned well and I need absolute cooperation for us to get to our destination on time. And by planning, I mean I think I need to accept the fact that toddlers need to stop and smell the flowers. And by flowers, I mean she needs to stop and look at every icicle formed in this god forsaken frozen wasteland. But the point is, we shouldn’t always be in a hurry. She needs to explore, and I need to be more patient.
2. My greatest frustration is when things don’t go according to my plan. The reason I need everything to go smoothly, is because I need to accomplish my mental list of chores and activities by the time I have to teach in the evening. That means everyday has a deadline of about 3:00pm, because I want everything in order for the babysitter to make it easy for them.
3. Raising a family is an enormous amount of work. Running a household is enormous amount of work. A career that means something to you is an enormous amount of work. At the present time, all of these things are suffering because I figured I could do it all.
This is bullshit, Bitches.
Two generations ago, before all the bra burning crap happened and women decided we should all get to join the workforce and been strung out, us girls had a manageable workload. Now, we’re working two full time jobs, except one of them is unpaid.
If you want to be a career woman instead of having kids, go right ahead. I applaud you. I used to be that girl. Hard working, ambitious, and uber dedicated to my task. But now, after kids?
Now, I long for the 1950’s, where a family could get by financially with one stay at home parent. Because even though my kids will still drive me crazy, the extra pressure wouldn’t be there. Most of all, I wouldn’t have put all these unrealistic expectations of myself to be amazing at everything.
I’m all out of amazing, Bitches. I feel mediocre at best. On a good day.
Hopefully I will figure out the best way to shuffle things around so I can be a kinder, more effective, less exhausted, more attentive, more patient, more present, more appreciative parent than I have been lately.
Maybe I’m in a slump. Maybe I need a vacation. But in the end, work will always be there and there will always be a new opportunity. My babies only have a short time to be babies and make memories that will shape who they are and how they cope with this thing called life.
Time to slow down.
Gladly taking suggestions on how to do that. How do YOU balance things, Bitches??