Of Meltdowns and Such

The following was written last week. I didn't post it. I was worried what people would think... or that they would send me to the doctor to get on some anti-depressants. Truly, this was a post written at a low point. It's a woe-is-me, the-sky-is-falling type of thing. It's rather angsty and raw and ridiculous. And real. And maybe getting a sneak peek into one of my meltdowns will make us kindred spirits. Maybe it will make you nod and make you feel like you aren't alone. Or, y'know, maybe it'll make you feel awesome because you've never felt this pathetic - whatever floats your boat. I aim to please.

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Oh, August, you are finally almost over. I love you, you know. You are the month my daughter was born in. The month my boys were born in. You are a month of heat and sunshine. You are days full of splash parks, water fights, sunscreen, and floppy hats. You are full of fields of wheat ripening and yellow canola.
                You are an exhilarating birthday party, full of games, cake, and decorations. You are a sad birthday full of tears, cupcakes, flowers, and visits to a cemetery. You are exhausting. Mentally, emotionally, and this year, physically.
                This month was full of a one year old who stopped sleeping and started teething molars. He was all fevers and fussiness. Sleepless nights, long days with an active three year old and a miserable one year old and a husband in full out harvest mode. August brought man-colds, a kid cold, and then brought me a cold, too, because hey, why not.
                My house has fallen apart. Dishes and laundry are in dirty piles… I can’t remember the last time I dusted or vacuumed. I’ve felt zombie like. Going through the bare minimum motions. Waiting for… I’m not even sure what. Waiting for the tooth to come through. Waiting for the fever to break. Waiting for the baby to fall asleep.
                Waiting for Rory’s birthday to be over.
Every August I fixate on it. After the boys’ birthday, I think of nothing else. I obsess. I can’t stop thinking about it. Reliving it. I re-read my journal. I re-read the blog posts. And every year, I figure out a way to celebrate a little girl’s birthday when she isn’t here anymore.
                This year was the first year Kadon could be actively involved. He’s starting to understand. Sitting at the cemetery he asked, “Can we bring Rory home?”
                “We can’t, honey. She died and she’s in Heaven now.”
                He laid his head on his Daddy’s shoulder and pretty much summed up my month. “I’m so sad. And I’m so mad.”
                I feel unsettled. Unhappy. Incomplete. In a constant state of not good enough. I cannot be all things to all people. I know that. But lately I’ve felt like I suck in every aspect of life. Sometime I wonder what I even consider to be a perfect life. And then I get side-tracked by all the what-ifs and the greener grass of roads left untraveled. Like what if I had gone to university and become a psychiatrist, what if I was living in a big city in a loft apartment writing books, what if I was wandering around the world right now… ect. ect. ect.
                But at the end of the day, I just want the willpower, drive, motivation and energy to brush my teeth and wash my face twice a day, to floss once a day, to have sex four times a week, to actually get dressed and feel put together every day. To get up and have coffee and devotions in the quiet of the morning. To workout and lose weight and feel attractive again. To do baking, crafts, and playtime with my kids. To clean up a mess as soon as it’s made. To be tidier. To be organized. To de-clutter. To purge. To get my photos organized. To make my bed every day. To keep my bathrooms clean. To vacuum every second day. To keep on top of the laundry. To read books. To watch movies. To blog. To write. To finish my book and start another, and another. To work my Arbonne business. To be a successful business woman. To have a glorious, weed-free garden. To make my own flour. To have my own milk cow. To volunteer and be involved. To go out for coffees and playdates with friends. To go on dates with my husband. To have an organized, functioning office in which the bills always are paid on time and the papers are always filed.
In short, to be perfect. The perfect wife. The perfect mother. The perfect daughter. The perfect sister. The perfect aunt. The perfect friend. The perfect Christian. The perfect volunteer.
                It all seems so unattainable. So vastly over-whelming. And then I look over my list, and truly, separated they seem like pretty simple, mundane things that I really could have control over. But compiled into a to-do list, they just make me feel…
                Not good enough.
                I am weighted down by my own unbelief in myself. By my own unmet expectations I set for myself. It’s ridiculous, isn’t it?
                I cannot be all things to all people. Not even to myself.
                My husband, the person in this world who loves me the most, thinks I’m an amazing mother and beautiful wife. He has often said, “You may not be perfect, but you’re perfect for me.”
                I don’t know why I strive for perfection. I often don’t even realize I am. For the most part, I am a laid-back type of person. But I am weary. Emotionally spent. In this month, I still feel grief stricken. Physically exhausted. Tired. Tired of being tired. Spiritually deprived. I wish, when I felt like this, I read my Bible, prayed, and went to church MORE instead of, well, not at all.  
                I wonder, if maybe I feel like this because there isn’t a lot of glory in this life I chose. I rinse out the dishcloth at long last and look around with pride at my clean, clean kitchen… and then in three hours, it’s a mess again. The toy room… tidied… and tidied… and tidied again, and yet never tidy. Laundry. It’s never done. Bills, there’s always more coming. Dust, dirt, grime… nothing stays clean for long. Oh you wrote a blog post recently? Yeah, actually, that was like two weeks ago. You haven’t called that friend in weeks. You forgot to respond to that text. You had to cancel those plans. You had to say no to that volunteer position. You forgot to switch the laundry. Again. Your kid is sassing you. Your kid is disobeying you. Your kid is crying at your feet. Your kid is crying while you are holding him. Basically, in a nut shell, you suck. Every aspect of every job you are supposed to be doing is making you feel like you are not good at anything. Like you can do nothing right. And even if, by some miracle, you do get it right for a moment, or a day, or a week, it doesn’t stay right. If you don’t stay on it, keeping it right, it goes wrong so, so fast.
It feels like when you get it wrong, everyone notices. And when it’s right, no one cares, because really, no one congratulates you for having a clean floor and the clothes put away.

                Sometimes being labelled a house wife or stay at home mom can feel like a degrading title. Especially when the house is a mess and your kids are behaving horribly. Because right now, in this stage in my life, my kids and my house are my identity. So when I’m struggling with one or the other, or both at the same time, it feels like I am the most incapable and pathetic person in the universe. 

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Sorry, that was kind of lengthy, wasn't it? And that, my friends, is what a meltdown looks like in written form. Thankfully, writing is therapeutic and I'm feeling a lot better now. September, sleep, and some perspective are awesome things. Re-reading that crazy, long paragraph of everything I want to be and do makes me kind of smile and shake my head now. Why was I being so hard on myself? I don't suck. I'm kind of awesome. But even the most awesome person has moments of... well, all of that written above. And so, there it is. The next time you're having your own meltdown, just remember - you are entitled to your meltdowns. Have them. Feel them. They don't last forever. 

Comments

  1. Thanks so much for your honesty my dear. I think you're grand, well put together, and sometimes find myself wishing I was a more like you as a parent and friend. "Oh look! She's visiting friends again. I should do that." "Oh look! She's running! I should get on that." etc etc It's funny how we don't see how others struggle but we're certain everyone sees our own.

    As far as I'm concerned, I will poke anyone in the eye who says you need to have everything put together. Then I'd do it a second time to make myself feel better too. I might also offer to do their laundry and then light it on fire.

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