Updated: May 17, 2022
No one tells you about the challenges of motherhood.
I ran into isolation, sadness, short bursts of depression, frustration, and complete exhaustion. I know I’m not alone in this. Moms don’t admit they need HELP because at the end of the day we put ourselves last.
My son was about 18 months old. He had a deep desire to be independent but at the same time wanted constant comfort and reassurance. Everything I did or didn’t do would upset him. He started to have inconsolable tantrums that lasted between 30-60 minutes.
Between waking up with night terrors, lack of communication, painful teething, and growth spurts we were both exhausted. The full-time “job” of motherhood was getting the best of me.
I just wanted some peace and quiet. A full night’s sleep. And the energy to work out. I had a home to keep clean, four cats to feed, meals to prep, mountains of laundry to complete, and a toddler to keep alive.
My husband, the hero, was gone between 24-36 hours between a full-time Firefighter/EMT job and a full-time paramedic student. I was alone and isolated when Liam had his tantrums. Every day felt like survival of the fittest from when Liam woke up in the middle of the night to kicking and screaming before bedtime.
I’ll never forget the moment I felt completely lost and honestly had the horrible thoughts of running away. Liam had tantrums all morning and afternoon. He wasn’t sick, but teething and growing. He wanted things I couldn’t give him. I tried playing and making him laugh but he’d throw toys at my face.
I’d yell at him, immediately feeling guilty then he’d cry and then I’d cry. Nothing was getting better. It was January. I felt as dead inside as it looked outside. I imagined walking out that moment into the car. I imagined leaving my son behind, then driving far away ... I felt like a failure.
"Everyday I felt like a failure."
I was tired of it. This terrible feeling consumed me, and I hated it. I hated myself for even imagining such a scenario. Meanwhile, my son is crying. Begging to be picked up and comforted.
I immediately snapped out of it. I hugged my son, held him tight and vowed to never allow myself to feel that again.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to perform daily holistic self-care. Even if it's for five minutes a day. Why is this important? When you give yourself permission to perform a self-care practice you start to bring yourself back “home.” Back to what your body, mind, heart, and soul yearns and needs to feel whole. I currently do yoga, Reiki on myself and recently started jogging. I do things that give me joy and keep me sane.
Over time, I’ve become internally strong which makes me face any challenge with grace and gumption. We all have the power to make positive changes in our lives. You have to believe it, then take action.
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