Across the country, moms and dads have been cooped up with their kids this week in what seems like an endless string of snow days. Fellow parents can attest that these frosty furloughs from our daily routines aren’t all rosy cheeks and hot chocolate. Sure, I “like” Facebook posts of friends’ kids out in the snow with their frozen snot mustaches atop chattering blue lips, but I relate more to the on-the-verge cries for help. When you have no physical contact with anyone over the age of nine for days on end, it’s a slippery slope from Norman Rockwell to Norman Bates.
One of my dearest friends summed it up best in a text she sent me yesterday. I give you her three stages of snow days:
Going on day 5 of snow day.
Day 1 = play in snow, hot cocoa
Day 2 = baking and crafts
Day 4 = Son on his Kindle all day while I get drunk and binge watch Veep
I haven’t left the house since Monday morning (it is now Friday). We live on a private mountain road that my husband can barely get up and down in his truck right now so my Leaf can just forget it. This means that while I’ve been housebound, he’s been able to escape. Yesterday at 3pm, I texted the following list of requested items from the outside world:
- a good bottle of red wine
- a deck of cards*
- Rock’em Sock’em Robots
* I was teaching Jed to play black jack and we quite literally weren’t playing with a full deck.
If I were a rock star, I think I would make one hell of a rider list.
I’m a very impatient person. I want the Walmart checkout line/Internet connection/school bus on the highway to move faster. I want my post-baby belly gone now. I want this weight (which is quite heavy for being invisible) lifted off my chest yesterday. I wonder which I’ll lose first: The weight or the crazy?
They say it takes nine months for your body to get that way, and that long — or longer — for it to go back to “normal.” I hate They. (Almost as much as I hate the women I see who had babies after me who are already back in their skinny jeans.)
So while I feel paralyzed by my anxiety and while I’m stomping mentally on the inside like a two-year-old because I’m not getting what I want right now, I’m at least thinking about making healthy decisions. Planning — whether it comes to fruition or not — keeps me from pushing my cuticles down past my knuckles. It’s possible none of this stuff will happen, but better to obsess virtually via Internet searches, going blurry-eyed from the bright screen light than to turn inward. It’s dark in there.
I’m thinking about:
But it’s not all talk and no walk. I said before that I was going to ask for help, and I did. Unfortunately, the perfect person to help me is not available until mid-December, but I’m going to wait it out. It’s like when you have a craving for a specific dish, but when you get to the restaurant, it’s a 45-minute wait. If you leave and try somewhere else, it will likely take almost as long but the result won’t be nearly as satisfying. So I’m going to hold out another six weeks for the ultimate mental health veggie burrito as it were.
I’ve also discovered the healthy wonder that is spaghetti squash. Not figuratively, but the real thing. The way it transforms when you scoop it out with a spoon? Blows my mind.
I’m sick of putting on a face for Facebook and only showing my bright side… it’s exhausting. So Lindsey Living is now where I’m going to come to be me. All of me. Not just “look at the cute thing my son did the other day” me. I love to write, but I’m a very private person so this is a big step.
Okay, so I LOVE being a mom. I adore my children. I do not wish to hurt them or hurt myself. (Sometimes I want to hurt my husband, but that’s for many different reasons). My daughter was born 12 weeks ago and she’s a joy. I was told when I went back to work that I would be SO ready and actually relieved to rejoin the living. Truth is, I’m not. I could spend every second of the day with Abbie and be perfectly, blissfully happy. I’m not saying this to make anyone feel like a bad mom who was indeed ready to get back to work. It’s just how I feel. So there’s that.
And then there’s this sudden, overwhelming imperfect storm of anxiety, irritation and sadness that has me mentally paralyzed. I’ve read on the interwebs that this could have to do with weaning. I remember feeling the same sometime during the middle of the first year of my son’s life. I sought help, I felt better. So once again, I’m seeking help. I hope that it is in fact helpful. In the meantime, I’m trying to keep it together, keep my job (which I actually really like) and not to scare the crap out of or totally disorient my family. All while keeping up with the laundry and dishes.
Sorry, there’s no cute pic or stock image to go along with this post.