“It takes a village to raise a child”
Parenting is challenging in many ways. As a single parent to one child I salute the other single parents who are raising more than one. I love my little man more than I could ever possibly describe, and without him I would be completely lost. Yet there are many days when I feel like a complete and utter failure. I feel as though I was not cut out for this role. I am too selfish, I struggle with the high expectation and pressure I put upon myself, the poor little guy gets to experience this too. What I feel sometimes makes this worse is the fact that I am acutely aware of it. So I beat myself up about it. My mind whirls with negativity, phrases such as “I can’t do this”, “Its too much”. I daydream about future times when he is grown up and I ‘get my life back’. See what I mean about selfish? I mean isn’t he my life?
When I watch TV programmes and read magazines which have stories about motherhood and parenting it seems that all the mothers are saints. Self sacrificing, totally commited to their roles as mothers. It all comes across as picture perfect. How a mother ‘should’ be. I put the pressure on myself once more. I don’t possess the patience, I am not cut out for this. I am a ‘bad’ mother.
My parenting journey at present has hit a rough patch. I sneek to the bathroom for some respite and solitude, only to have little legs follow me and begin telling me stories through the closed door. I feel irritation rising up within me.
“Just give mummy a minute darling”
I feel trapped. It feels like the summer holidays are dragging on for too long. I ought not to say though, I guess I should enjoy every moment I get to spend with my little guy. And do not get me wrong, most of the time I do. But somedays it just all gets a little too much.
I am overwhelmed by motherhood on a daily basis. Still everyday is different. On a good day I may read this and not recognise the person who wrote it. I will no longer be in this space.
A wise woman I met in Tenerife over the start of summer told me, after seeing my exasperation with my attempts to get my little guy to sit down for five minutes to eat breakfast, said to me, ” Little people bring small problems, adults bring major problems – enjoy the time whilst they are small, even though it gets stressful, just remember this is the small time stuff. Once he’s grown and the problems grow you’ll be wishing it was simple struggles such as this”. And she is so true in what she said. Sometimes it’s hard to remember. But I am going to try my hardest to always keep it at the fore front of my mind.
Now to take some deep breaths and count to ten. The bad days never last, and without them one would never realise or appreciate the intense joy and happiness which follows.