Love Story

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Mommy Meltdown

I wish I could tell you all that I had it all together all the time. Shoot, I wish I could just pretend that about myself! But the truth is, sometimes it is hard. Sometimes things pile on top of each other until I just can't take it anymore. This leads to what I like to call a mommy meltdown.
Now meltdowns aren't something that just started happening once I had children. I have them from time to time when life becomes overwhelming. I suspect that if I were to ask my mom about it she would confirm that this has been going on since I was old enough to whine or through myself on the floor. But mommy meltdowns are a whole new level of losing it. Maybe because once you become a mom you start juggling a lot more. I can handle a lot more on my plate then I could pre-kids and be okay. But when the right circumstances hit, when you combine new baby with things piling up around the house and new responsibilities outside the house, you create the perfect storm.
I had said meltdown last night. Fortunately not taking it out on my children, which I hate to admit does happen from time to time, but instead in the form of losing it in front of my husband. The whole self-deprecating speal, with tears of course, about how I am a failure and not cutting it and can't do what other moms/wives seem to be able to do. Of course my husband being the amazing man he is and having been subjected to such tirades for the past 7 and 1/2 years, knew exactly what to do. First he tried countering my negativity by telling me all the things I DO get done and that I shouldn't compare myself to others and that I don't give myself enough credit. This didn't work to calm me down but it is always nice to hear that he feels that way. He then did the thing that always makes the biggest difference and asked, "What do you need me to do?" These seven words are always enough to bring me down from my ledge. It is like in a movie when someone is threatening to jump, and you know they don't really want to, and someone peeks their head out of the window to talk them down. Just having that support and knowing someone is there for you can be enough to change the situation.
In talking through the things that I needed help with to feel like I could get done what I wanted to and attempt to be the person I want to be, we came up with some good stuff. He has also been great at reminding me that I always feel this way when we have a baby in the house and that this too shall pass. He is right. I wish I didn't need such frequent reminders lately but that is why I am so glad he is here. I can't even begin to imagine trying to walk this road all by myself. More than being for me in that moment, as if that wasn't enough, he is forcing offering to give me some much needed "me" time on Friday morning. From getting up and getting only myself ready while he prepares the kids to having an hour to hit a coffee shop all by myself. He is going to tackle all 3 kids for the morning so that I can have some peace and hopefully regain my sanity for another week What a wonderful man!! He knows me so well and this is exactly the kind of thing that will recharge my batteries and help me to do my job as wife and mother that much better.
I wish I could say I was perfect. But I take comfort in knowing that I am not alone on this imperfect journey. Here's hoping the next mommy meltdown is miles away!


  1. Chrystal, first let me tell you how amazing I think you are. You are a wonderful wife and mother, always looking out for your family's best interests and stretching your time for the maximum benefit of them. Second, let me just say I know exactly how you feel. Although we are fortunate enough to be stay-at-home moms, our job is never-ending, always with us 24/7 and sometimes you just feel like screaming "WHEN DO I GET MY ME TIME!!!!!!!!!!" Whether it be sitting in a room separate from the rest of the family and enjoying the peace and quiet or physically leaving the house for a little while, it is very real and very much needed. That all being said, I simply think you are doing an amazing job raising your boys and don't think for one second you are falling short!

  2. Thanks Courtney, that means a lot. Especially coming from a wonder woman like you:) I think sometimes there is that guilt when I don't love every minute of being home. But who does love every minute of their job? I guess it is realizing that feeling that way doesn't make me a bad mom or change the love I have for my kids. I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts with me, it helps immensely to know I am not the only one.

  3. Oh you are most definintely not alone! I have my fair share of 'mommy meltdowns' too! I think you hit the nail on the head when you said there is the guilt. Just this time home on maternity leave has me feeling guilty when I'm not loving every minute of it (like when I have two kids screaming while one is not wanting to get out of the bath and the other needs to be fed -- trying to find the balance). And then when I go back to work I feel guilty for leaving my kids and not feeling motivated to have dinner on the table every night... oh the list goes on!

    You are so lucky to have a husband who is so supportive and loving. It sounds like you are doing an amazing job as mommy and wife! Keep up the good work and have comfort knowing you are not alone. Be sure to enjoy your 'me time' on Friday mornings... that sounds fabulous! :)

  4. That balance with more than one kid is so hard Tatum! It does get easier as they get older but with a baby who can't be told, "Wait a minute, I'm dealing with your brother/sister," it is extra hard.

    Thanks for the kind words. I love that as mommies we can all share our experiences good and bad. I do feel very blessed by my husband, God was good in picking him for me!

  5. Chrystal, I totally agree with what you are saying. The issue I have with my situation is the guilt I have for having to work outside the home. You are so fortunate that you get to stay home with your beautiful boys! Don't get me wrong...I love my teaching job, but I love being a mom even more. The sad reality is that I have to work. The guilt I feel most days is sometimes unbearable. I want to stay at home and raise my family. However, the way I get through it is that I tell myself this..."Think of how proud my kids will be of me when they realize how much I am helping other children achieve the gift of education." That usually makes me feel better. I also feel guilty when I want me time when I already work 5 days a week. It sure is a struggle to find a balance that works for everyone.

  6. I here ya Michelle. You know I really do feel incredibly blessed to have the choice to stay home as I know that so many mom's don't. That does add to my guilt when I get frustrated in my situation. I feel like I don't have the right. But I think all of us mom's struggle with whatever situation we have been given. There is balance in all of it...being a wife, a mother, an employee. Hard stuff!


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