I am not the mother that I want to be.
I am patient but only when I am not tired, which is most of the time. I am too easily irritated. I blow up in a rage too easily (I am getting better at avoiding this). I don't always enjoy the company of my son - THAT is the worst one, for me, the bringer of the biggest load of guilt. God, how I used to "feel sad" for kids whose parents didn't want to spend every waking moment with them. Hi guise. I am sorry. Please can I join your club?
When he was tiny I had all of these expectations and plans and everything was going to be perfect. Well, I failed my first hurdle when I tried EC (elimination communication). That's where you hold them over a pot every time you think they need a wee, and somehow your superior connection with them allows them to do this. Skips potty training. Yeah, failed that one. Once he could crawl he didn't want to be held over a potty, he wanted to be out there, crawling and doing stuff. Didn't potty train until he was over 3. Still won't poo anywhere other than home two years later.
I was going to get him used to all of these lovely home cooked foods and instead when we were first on our own we had no oven and no microwave, he lived off veggieburgers and frozen veg for months and then stopped eating and since then has been the fussiest eater ever. I see people whose children eat couscous and chickpeas and soup - fucking soup!! - and feel shit. Baby-Led weaning, you lied.
I was useless at wrap slings. I forgave myself for this one (like I forgave myself for the EC thing, once I realised MOST PEOPLE DON'T DO THIS and IT IS A MAD IDEA.)
I think I took from my mum, and my grandma, that to be a good mother you just had to be kind. And so I sort of sat back and relaxed, because I am pretty kind, I am a nice person, job done. I read all of these theories and they fitted in with my "be kind" mantra, and I think I felt like I was done. This is the old "clever but lazy" thing coming out in me again from school. Oh yes. I have the theories, I know how to do this right, I have great ideas about how to carry it out, too. This will be awesome. Do you know what I did this year? I planned little activities to do every day of Advent to celebrate Christmas and get the Christmas excitement flowing. Well, it's the 11th of December, 2 weeks to go and we have done not one thing on that list.
This is just, basically, a perfect illustration of every fucking thing I do. I have a good idea. I get really psyched about the idea. It's going to be fun. It's really going to work this time - look, I made a pretty colour coded chart and everything! Then, whatever it is happens, I'm motivated for maybe the first one or two, if that, and then I fall back on my usual which is to do nothing and stay up on the internet for hours.
It's some kind of torture. I know exactly what I want to do, I watch myself not do it, and then I have the exact details of what I should have done (and failed to do, again) differently to beat myself up with. Maybe my standards are too high and I'm setting myself up to fail, I don't know. But, to be honest, even when I make myself a totally piss-easy target I fall short from that after a short while, and I get down because it's not even that I don't do something well enough, it's that I quite often don't do it at all.
It gets me down. I can't seem to be the person I so desperately want to be. Hell, I can't even seem to be a normal person who functions adequately.