Friday, October 05, 2007

Dark Places Where Monsters Dwell

I’ve been kind of in a bad place the last several days. I’m not sure what it is, exactly. I was emailing with a Girlfriend of mine, JDEgirl (, and wondering whether there was, quite literally, a bad cloud hanging over the greater Midwest.

I was expressing to Husband (after I went kind of psychotic b**ch on him because he was trying to fix a leak in a faucet in our master bathroom while I was trying to take a bubble bath, and all I wanted was 15 minutes of absolute silence) – that our children are making me feel like I cannot breathe. And like I cannot remember who I am.

I feel like kind of a cold-blooded witch for saying that my children make me feel like I cannot breathe when I know that there are people who read my blog who are desperately trying to bring their children home. Or who are trying to conceive, or trying to heal from some horrifying losses. So, for me to sit here and tell you that I feel like I am being driven bat-shit crazy by my two beautiful children, seems, I don’t know…wrong and selfish and petty, and I apologize for being this way. I don’t mean to be a witch, I guess I was just made that way. This is just brutal honesty, served up with a side of bitter wit.

Maybe it’s because I am NEVER ALONE. Well, I suppose, technically, I am alone for about 15 minutes in the car on the way to my office from the nursery school in the morning, and again from my office to the nursery school at the end of the day. (But, I am usually spending those minutes alternately worrying about everything I have to get done when I get to work, or worrying that I am going to be late getting the daycare center, which closes at 5:30, and I am usually running in the door at 5:29, and I find this very stressful. Also, I swear all of the city’s idiot drivers congregate on the road I need to take from downtown where I work to the University where the nursery school is, and if I had a rocket launcher mounted on the front of my car, I would probably be tempted to divorce myself from a lifetime of pacifism…)

Anyway, I’m never alone, ALONE – like completely alone. And rarely alone with Husband, which is equally frustrating. I swear that every time I try to have a conversation with Husband, one of the kids MUST HAVE OUR ATTENTION RIGHT NOW.

If I was sitting, quietly, on the couch, and both kids were in another room, and I opened my mouth to try to have a meaningful (or even meaningless) conversation with Husband, both children would suddenly demand to be heard. It’s like the muscles that open my mouth are hardwired to their heads and they simply don’t want me to be able to have a grown-up conversation with their father. And so I find myself often not saying things that I would like to say, because I don’t have the energy to get what I have to say out, because I just don’t have it in me to try to talk around, above, over and below the children.

I realize how paranoid that sounds, I do. They’ve just both been incredibly whiny and falling asleep late and waking up early and, frankly, it’s times like these when the dark places in my soul threaten to eat me alive.

I’m spending the weekend with my Girlfriends from college (who are always good at reminding me that I'm still me and I'm still still here somewhere), and Husband and I have tickets to a show tonight, and I’m hopeful that all will seem bright and shiny and new after some time with Husband and some time with Girlfriends…thank god for good Husbands and good Girlfriends…



Blogger mam said...

Oy. Again, I appreciate and am terrified by the honesty. Even before baby, I liked a LOT of alone-time, which my husband was happy to accommodate. We've only had Lucy for 3.5 months now, and happily she's going to bed super-early so I get some alone time at night, but I anticipate feeling much like you describe sometime soon. I'm glad you've got some plans to get out with good husbands and girlfriends. Have fun.

Friday, October 05, 2007 12:05:00 PM  
Blogger Danielle said...

You are still there. Our kids just need to suck the life out of us for a bit. Then we get to appreaciate the 15 minutes we actually do get alone all the more. Can't wait to see you tomorrow. We need to have this fun time.

And... we will lock the kids in the basement with food and snacks!!! No reason to come upstairs because they can poop on the floor.

Friday, October 05, 2007 3:45:00 PM  
Anonymous Christina said...

I hear you. There are days when I literally don't have one minute to myself until like 10:30 at night. I used to think of myself as a very "social" person but now I think I'm a closet introvert because I just hunger for those quiet alone times! Time away with girlfriends and husbands is awesome, I wish I found a way to do it more often. Enjoy your weekend!!

Friday, October 05, 2007 7:09:00 PM  
Blogger maxhelcal said...

All the time I have people asking me how I can have seven kids and still work....this is why.

I don't really have an inner need for "alone time" though so for me this is just "away from kids time ". I enjoy laughing and having fun with my friends at work and by the time I come home....I miss the children and look forward to the evening with them. Work is more of a social thing for me rather than a financial necessity. I spend most of my money on extras for the kids and an occasional bath and body works or yankee candle shopping spree! :-) It keeps me sane and happy!

If's it's any consolation
Gretchen...the children will grow out of this stage and eventually, you'll be begging for them to spend some time with you! LOL


Saturday, October 06, 2007 12:08:00 PM  
Anonymous E. said...

Oh, I am so with you on this one. I love my children, and I can't wait to get Quinn home, but they do suck the life out of me and I do have times when those dark clouds not only hang over me, but seem to press down and suffocate me. As much of a blessing as it is to be a parent, it is also a huge emotional sacrifice. The hugest. And I sooooooo know what you mean about having to talk over, under and around the kids. Gaaaahhhhh! Enjoy your weekend.

Saturday, October 06, 2007 12:16:00 PM  
Blogger S. said...

I am sure you will feel much better after some adult time. You aren't alone--the never being able to have a conversation with Dh is getting to me--and L. can't even talk yet...and we are adding one more in.

I don't think you sound like a witch--motherhood can be suffocating sometimes. Recognizing it and getting sometime away from them is huge.

Sunday, October 07, 2007 2:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe there are dementors in your neighborhood :) j/k

Anyway, I was kind of afraid of feeling like that because I've always been the kind of person who likes a good amount of alone time...fortunately, with kids I don't seem to need's adults that I need time away from.

I had a friend when I was a kid that twice a week his parents had "alone time". The kids were told that for the next 15 minutes no one was to knock on their bedroom door unless it was truly a matter of physical well-being. Then, his mom or dad or both would go in and just relax (or do whatever). Never know, it may work after a little training.

Monday, October 08, 2007 11:15:00 AM  
Blogger niobe said...

Believe me, I really do understand where you're coming from on this one. Really.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007 6:08:00 PM  

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