Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Things I Suck At: Tuesday Edition

I suck at asking for help.

There.  I said it.

And even in admitting it here, I feel like I'm wussing out.

But I really do.  And I (apparently, inadvertently, unfortunately) give off this air of "having my shit together," which makes people unlikely to offer help.  I once overheard an acquaintance say, about me, "She's like the ultimate mom."

I laughed.

Right now, I do not have my shit together.  There are a lot of reasons, but long story short, I'm struggling.  Yesterday was terrible.  My throat hurt from yelling by the time the kids fell asleep.  "Ultimate Mom" my ass.  I shudder to think what someone walking by our house would have thought of me last night.  (Claire has decided that she can't go pee alone, so she stands over the brand new carpet demanding that someone come watch her pee, and we've had it and we're not going along with it, because she can totally do it by herself, but she stands there and threatens to wet her pants on the new carpet until I lose my mind...  And I don't know how to make it stop.  Last night I told her that if she pees on my new carpet I will pee on her favorite toys, and I named names.  We'll see how that goes.  I hope I don't have to, but I'll totally do it if she pushes me.  Look out, Biscuit the Cat.)

But I've just had it.  I've been with these kids non-stop for 11 days now, without a break.  That's 264 hours of parenting in a row.  And I'm tired.  And I have 100,000 things to do at work that I'm not doing, and I'm getting more and more stressed the longer the things build up.  I feel like that old Ziggy cartoon.  "God put me on earth to do a certain number of things, and right now I'm so far behind, I will never die."

I finally, tearfully admitted to BJ last night that I can't take it much longer - just in time for him to go back to work this morning.  If I had a brain in my head I would've said, "Happy Memorial Day!  Take the kids and go away for a while!!" yesterday morning, but I didn't.  Because I can't ask for help.  Because I'm an idiot.

I talked to a friend about this once, and she said she's the same way.  She said that the phrase "I can do everything all by myself.... why isn't anyone helping me?!" summed up her life.  I feel the same way.

In my next life, I want to be one of those wilting-flower-type women who can't make Koolaid without someone saying, "Oh honey, let me do that for you - you go put your feet up."  I know a couple.  They're kind of a dying breed.  100 years ago they would've been frequent fainters, who carried smelling salts (no, whose friends carried smelling salts).  I don't know how they've pulled it off, but I think I would've had to start a long time ago to get anyone to go along with it.  It's too late at this point.  I have not managed anyone's expectations of me.

My dad's on his way over, thank goodness, so I probably won't snap today.  And our new sitter Delri starts tomorrow, so I'll be able to go to work and catch up.  There's a light at the end of the tunnel.

Today, my goal is to avoid yelling, and to remember to breathe. 


Yolanda said...

OMG Amy!!! I swear you were writing about me! I have the same problem. My deal is that I shouldn't have to ask for help. THEY SHOULD JUST KNOW DAMN IT!! I am slowly trying to rectify this but after 34 years, I'm afraid I have a long road ahead of me!

Anonymous said...

I send you a hug and empathy Amy. I get to be a "double mom" of my kids AND this morning to my own mother (who did NOT raise me as a child.) Mom called repeatedly to say the fire department evacuated her house b/c another house on another block is on fire and mom is worried about her cat. I called the fire department to be the voice of reason and calmly give them her cell phone, address and say she has a cat. Not part of my daily plan. I get it Amy.
Hugs, Becky:)

RobMonroe said...

Well, I think you are A super mom, even if you threaten to pee on Biscuit. (By the way, please don't pee on Biscuit - you will only realize later that you are the one stuck with cleaning it, too!)

Hope today is filled with laughter and iced tea. Those two things help me from snapping at work...

Theresa said...

Oh, I so get it! I feel like I yell constantly. I didn't want to be a yelling mom. But, it has happened. I'm learning (sloly) to save the yelling for the things that really need yelling, but it is difficult.

I'm not good about asking for help either. Mainly because the help I get is probably not how I would do it & I get even more frustrated!

I send you big hugs! You me and Casey should all get together sometime!

Anonymous said...

I think we "thought" our mothers never needed/asked for help, so we don't do it either! And then, by the time we really need help, we are so upset/angry that we scream at the kids or husband! The other day, I was just done. We had a fun filled day, but I was exhausted. Obviously my kids were too, because on the way home my daughter peed in her pants while sleeping in the car. She is FIVE! I was so mad, that at 10pm at night, I am screaming at her, trying to clean up the horrid mess in the van, and all while listening to the 7month old scream because it is time for him to eat! Ahhh...the joys of motherhood. Asking for help is never easy. Just remember that what our kids really need is love, and if we are providing that, then we are awesome moms!

Christiana said...

I know what you mean, when the boys were little, I couldn't ask for help either. With the potty thing...this won't last. Figure out some way to work around this, maybe she earns TV time/trip to the beach/other incentive for peeing by herself for a few days. Or loses a privilege if you have to go with her. Before you know it, she'll be a teenager and won't want you in her bedroom, let alone the bathroom with her! (Try to) enjoy this stage while it lasts!

mwiesjahn said...

I think it runs in the family. I am a planner and find that people in turn think that I have everything planned and ready to go, so no one volunteers to help to do anything for me. Mom is the same way. We're all screwed.

Amy said...

Thanks for the support, everyone. You guys are the wind beneath my wings. :)