Hey Mama, It’s Okay to Have a Bad Day
I meant to write a different post today.
Inspired this week by Hunter’s fearlessness in learning to take both figurative and literal leaps around his crib — and the living room furniture — I wanted to write about his infant tenacity and self-discovery. It’s adorable and incredible to watch him figure it out; sometimes making it from (non-sharp) corner to corner, sometimes safely falling, and most times being very excited to try again.
That was my plan.
But, I didn’t. Because today sucked. And you know what? That’s okay.
When Everything is Below Average //
Today sucked, big time. Everything about it was below average, and nothing about it made me feel accomplished or productive, or even joyful about my role as a mom.
I was super irritable from the classic mom-combo of poor sleep, poor eating habits, and less water intake than an orchid needs to survive. The babies are super whiny and have decided to stop nursing during the day, which stresses me out beyond description, and my husband and I were kinda snarky to each other for
no reason all the reasons listed above.
At 10:30 a.m. I thought to myself, “I can’t wait for this day to be over.” At 5:00 p.m. I was convinced that this had been the longest, suckiest day in recent twin history.
And then in true mom fashion, I felt guilty about it.
And then in true mom fashion, I felt guilty about it. Guilty that I had let a whole day pass me by with me essentially phoning it in. A whole day where I didn’t relish in the beauty and wonder of motherhood. Guilty about counting down the hours for the twins to fall asleep so I could be lazy and watch tv while flipping through Instagram, alone and in silence.
How. Dare. I.
It was a weekend day so at least my husband was home, though, feeling equally shitty. We did our parenting duty and cared for our children; fed, changed, bathed, and played with them. But I didn’t really enjoy it, at all. Even the babies were a little “off” today. I’m pretty sure they are going through a massive teething push right now, which comes through as whining and needy 23 hours of the day.
A No-Win Situation //
It’s a tricky stage because there’s nothing more I want than to make them feel better. To give them all the cuddles and some magic mama skin-to-skin that used to solve all our problems when they were teeny. Now, they want to be held all the time, but then the second you pick them up to comfort them they want out. ASAP. They no longer want to snuggle, which makes me sad and a little regretful I didn’t take more advantage of tiny humans sleeping across my chest. Now, they just want to use me as a human obstacle course.
There’s nothing more I want than to make them feel better. To give them all the cuddles and some magic mama skin-to-skin that used to solve all our problems when they were teeny.
So, I let them. I lay in the middle of our play area and let them crawl, stomp, smack, hair pull, lick, and (happy) scream however they want. They love it. They are adorable. And yet, today still sucked.
It’s Okay to Have a Shitty Day //
Here’s the thing about us mothers: we are 100% allowed to have days that fall way below the productivity meter. There is no conceivable way on earth for use to love every damn second of motherhood, every moment of our children’s lives, or even every interaction with our partners.
But, for whatever reason, we believe that we have to. That we’re supposed to. And if we don’t, we are failures. That we are the exceptions, not the norm. Well, that is some Grade A Bullshit. We are the norm. It is normal.
It’s okay if you ditch educational activities with your kids to watch a Say Yes to the Dress marathon.
It’s okay if you don’t leave the house or a single room for that matter. (#condolife)
It’s okay if you choose to sit in silence with a hot coffee instead of washing your hair.
It’s okay if you skip pumping during one nap so you can do something, anything, you actually enjoy that isn’t literally sucking the life out of you.
Give Yourself Permission to Suck //
I’m here to tell you that it’s okay to phone it in every once in a while if you just don’t have the energy or the patience to deal with the weight of motherhood.
If your children are fed, clean, safe and loved, give yourself permission to flip on Moana, park your kids in jolly jumpers in front of the TV, and order in McDonald’s via Uber Eats.
(DO IT. DO IT NOW.)
Give yourself permission to lower your expectations and embrace being below average for a day. You will survive.
Give yourself permission to be below average for a day. You will survive. Your babies will survive. Tell your partner that you feel blah and you realize you’re highly irritable and you just don’t want to talk, at all, really. Your relationship will survive.
You are doing a great job. You really are. Even if you let your kid hang out in the
circle of neglect exersaucer for longer than recommended so could have a hand free to shove microwaved leftover Kraft Dinner into your mouth at 10:30 a.m AND a hand free for the Apple TV remote. Even if your baby sneezed in your face and usually it’s kind of cute but today it made you cry because you are exhausted and haven’t showered in 3 days and now you have infant snot and saliva all over you.
So, if today sucked it’s ok. Tomorrow will be better.
** If you find yourself having multiple days that suck, or are feeling in a slump that you can’t get out of, please please please talk to a trusted friend or health care provider. Post-Partum Depression and Post-Partum Anxiety are very real conditions that affect more moms than you think. Help are resources are available; you don’t have to be afraid to ask. **
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AMEN!!! I had a guilt-ful day. BUt it was because I had to work while the kids were home, which I wouldn’t normally do. I’ve let it go now, because a) there was nothing I could do about it and b) in the greater schemes it was only ONE day… there might be a few more, but so long as its not everyday – it won’t hurt them long term. 🙂
AMEN!!! I feel nowadays there is so much pressure to be “the mom” but truth be told it is all a show if a mom has it all together all the time we all have bad days, we all fail at motherhood from time to time, Like you said “as long as they are fed, clean, safe and loved, give yourself permission to flip on Moana, park your kids in jolly jumpers in front of the TV, and order in McDonald’s via Uber Eats.” just love this post so much after the day… days I have had lately. Thank you so much for taking the time to write this!!
I love this! I fed don’t allow myself enough of these!
Totally had one of those days recently. There was nothing more to do than just go to bed and know tomorrow would be better! ha
Thank you for sharing this! I nearly had a breakdown in carpool line the other day. Hahaha, sometimes we just have to allow ourselves to have a bad day.