My girl is now a year old and I’ve hit somewhat of a stride of parenting where it feels like my normal. Some days I think I’m really good at this, it’s what I’ve been built for. The management of our lives and balance of all the little things that make up our days. Other days I feel so new to it, so fresh and so lost and when you look at the whole of a child’s life, I am exactly those things. Trying to figure out what kind of mama I am is a weird feeling. In Orange County (and I’m sure other places too) there seems to be real divisions.
Crunchy moms who do yoga all day and eat organic and are home schooling. Plastic mamas who like to do all the nipping and tucking and tan. That have nannies and probably vote republican. The minivan moms who have 3 plus children and seem to know how to do everything and where to get the best deals. Oh and the religious mamas, the ones who want to know what church you go to, ask you to go to their bible study mom group and seemingly are always available? And that doesn’t even start to address the stay at home moms versus the working moms which I’m also somewhere in between as a part time working mom of my own business with weird ass hours. I’m supposed to fit somewhere in that mix and I’m not sure where. Because I am both none and most of those things.
Trying to figure out what kind of
mama I am is a weird feeling.
Not only that but I’m fighting the fight about how to stay present. How to enjoy those moments that you are supposed to remember forever. Somewhere between breakfast and middle of the night wake ups I want to make memories. Sometimes I can do it, today it rained. I love rain. I had just gotten back from therapy (yay self care!) so I was feeling pretty good. We could have just said oh it’s pouring we will watch Moana again (which no doubt we did later). Instead I decided no, lets go get that rain coat and teach her to jump in puddles. And it was beautiful and joyful and memorable.
But just a few hours later I’m back to the drag. It’s 3 pm and she doesn’t want to nap and we’ve played with all the toys and watched Moana again and an episode of Daniel Tiger and I think, GODDAMNIT HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO STAY PRESENT. How am I supposed to stay in this? Why doesn’t anyone admit that kids are boring? Like she can’t even talk, I mean I talk to her and she babbles but it’s clearly not a fulfilling conversation for an adult person. Am I the only one who thinks these thoughts? That is fighting to not want to check my phone and try to connect with someone else, an adult, who can talk about politics and what’s on T.V. while giving her half my attention? I know I’m not. I don’t know how to do it it, to stay in this thing.
I don’t know how to do it it, to stay in this thing.
Because part of me thinks it’s okay to only be half way there.
I’m just not sure. Just the way that I am not sure where in that mom type break down I fit, I don’t know how to fit into this day to day staying committed to each moment with my kid, or if I even should have to? Because part of me thinks it’s okay to only be half way there as long as she knows she is LOVED. That we have far too high of expectations of ourselves. That previous generations knew it was alright to not give yourself 100% to every single thing you are doing at all times, that it’s unrealistic to expect ourselves to. Did our grandmothers say “man I really need to be more PRESENT for my child so they don’t feel like I don’t care”. No they accepted that they were doing their best and their children would have to wait sometimes. They also had a community of other women around them though and lived closer together in larger family units. So when something couldn’t get done or someone needed attention it wasn’t only on them. But I’ll get through today, and take a deep breath and say “I’m doing my best and some things have to wait”. And that thing that will wait, is finding out what kind of mama I am, because I’m the right kind of mama for my daughter, right now.