I remember when I was pregnant with Claire, and everyone told me, “Oh, it’s so wonderful! Enjoy every moment!” and I immediately though, oh no. What if I don’t? Does that make me a bad mother?
Then I had kid after kid after kid and guess what? I don’t enjoy every moment. And those who say they do are liars.
It comes in waves, I understand, but when it gets bad, sometimes it just gets bad.
I’ve got the perfect storm brewing here. I’m super pregnant. I can’t bend well, getting off the couch sometimes is painful, chasing kids down to correct them is monotonous, I don’t feel like standing in the kitchen cooking after a long day and it’s cold outside. I have pent up children, Claire was sick last week so we couldn’t go anywhere, and it’s COLD OUTSIDE.
As soon as Claire started to feel better, I took that as a good sign and tore apart the nursery to get it ready for baby and then tackled the basement because it was a horrible, horrible mess. And in the coming weeks it’ll be housing an elliptical. I needed the space. Claire helped by vacuuming the dust and litter, Luca took trip after trip of things that needed to go upstairs and Mae ran around trying not to get in the way. Mission failed on her part.
I think Luca took at least twenty trips up and down the stairs. I brought up a big chair, a dining room chair after I fixed it, crafting supplies…
We were all spent.
That night, Luca woke up at 2 AM crying and literally whimpering. He had a fever – the yuck that Claire had just gotten over. And of course, the only thing he wanted was his mom, so I crawled into bed with him. He tossed and turned and took about 2 hours to fall asleep. I went to go get him some medicine and water, and Matt started telling me he felt sick, too.
So I called off work. There was no way Matt could handle all the kids feeling the way he did. And I was running on only a few hours of sleep.
I slept in Luca’s bed with him, which is usually OK, but being that pregnant and only having one spot you can lay in with your back against the wall isn’t really ideal when you get sore easily.
But honestly there was no where else I wanted to be. He was whimpering.
I woke up sore, but OK, and Matt said he felt OK enough, so he went for a six mile run. Because, you know, that’s what you do when you’re fighting off a cold. I can’t blame him, I would have done the same thing in his position. I’ve taught spin under less than ideal conditions and am not regretful at all.
But Matt was certainly regretful come the afternoon when he had full on chills and fevers.
This carried on all weekend into this morning. He’s been 100% out of commission and it’s not even just man-whininess that usually comes when a guy is sick, it’s legit sick. He’s got body aches, fevers, chills, cough – everything. For a man who never misses work is still up in bed sleeping.
Last night, however, I was done being a mom. I was spent. Mae peed on the couch, Luca spilled yogurt all over the floor, they whined, complained, drove me nuts and all I wanted to do was sit on the couch and enjoy the Penguins game because I was so. freaking. tired. But no. No. I didn’t get to.
Matt felt awful, laying there the color of parchment paper and coughing his lungs up. I started to yell. Mae peed on the couch and I yelled. Luca spilled the yogurt and I yelled. I’m not proud of it, but any person who says they’d keep a level head at this point is either lying or doing it wrong because after over a week of just everything happening and nothing going right, one would lose it.
And I lost it.
I said, “Everyone in bed! Get ready. EVERYONE. NOW.”
Tears. Everyone in tears. Well, not Claire. She read me well, and quickly picked up her toys, and got ready. Luca, however, carried on. Maelie carried on. I was near tears.
I got them in bed, and started to read a book when Mae, who I’ve been trying to potty train for the past week, crapped her pants.
No. No, no, no, no. NO.
I changed her, plunked her in bed and said goodnight and was done.
But Mae wasn’t! She and her monkey got out of bed and proceeded to wander around upstairs.
Up and down the stairs I went putting her back to bed, her being defiant. Finally, I took the damn monkey from her.
She cried. And cried. And cried. MONKEEEEEY! MOOOOONKEEEEY!
Then I cried.
She finally calmed down and I gave her back her monkey and she went right back to bed.
And I sat on the couch and cried some more. I said to Matt, “I don’t want to be a mom anymore. Not today. I’m so tired.”
I still want to be a mom. I just wanted some breathing room and I got none. I’ve been caring for sick person after sick person and I’m tired. And all I want is just five minutes to myself, which I think I’m allowed.
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Having three kids aged five and under is hard. And soon? It’ll be FOUR kids aged five and under. Last night I felt overwhelmed for the first time in a long time. I’m not proud that I cried, but it’s the only thing I had control over at that very moment.
This morning, when Mae woke up, I found her standing at the top of the stairs holding that damn monkey.
I still love her, that won’t ever change. But last night? Didn’t like her so much.
Today is a new day.