I remember when we were getting ready to bring Emma home. We were scared, excited and convinced we’d be the best parents EVER! Leaving the shelter that day with Emma in her car seat Wanita called me aside and said “if you ever feel like you’re going to snap, just put Emma in her cot and go make yourself a cup of tea!”
At first I had no idea what she meant. I had waited so long for this little bundle there was no way I would ‘snap’ with her. Oh no, not me.
Until yesterday. It only dawned on me then what Wanita had meant. Mark was at a hockey tournament all day and Emma and I were going to a birthday party. The party was loads of fun, with Emma swinging, going on the slide and even having a pony ride, but she didn’t know any of the kiddies there and I only knew one or two adults. Needless to say I was Emma’s entertainment for the morning. It’s at times like these that I wish had a pocket sized Thabani with me.
We got home and had a snooze. Unfortunately I wasn’t feeling great and Emma’s nap was shorter than I had hoped. All in all I felt like crap and probably needed to rest a little more. It was almost as if Emma could ‘smell’ my irritation yesterday. It was as if she was doing it on purpose. You know how a cat will always go to the one person in the room that can’t stand them. Well, that was Emma yesterday. Imagine me the rather annoyed house guest and she the feline. It was a recipe for disaster…
After me shouting at her and losing my cool one too many times, I put Emma to bed at 8pm. I went downstairs and put the TV a little louder. I kept wishing that I had asked a friend to come round and let me have some time-out but I thought that that would be a sign of weakness. The night would have gone so differently. I wouldn’t be feeling so guilty but I honestly figured it would be a bad reflection on me as a mother and as a human being. Surely I shouldn’t need someone to be looking after my baby? Surely I should be cherishing every moment with her?
Berating myself for being a horrible person and an even worse mother I realized it’s not weak people who ask for help. It’s the brave! It’s okay to need a break from our kids for a little while. It’s not a bad thing to get the chance to miss them. And it’s good for them to miss us too…
We all want to be Super-Moms. We put pressure on ourselves to be super moms, wives, partners, lovers, career women but sometimes it’s okay to just be super-tired!