Yesterday a friend got in touch and sent me the most absurd message. “How do you keep it together and do so well as a mum?”
What? Have we met? Keep what together exactly? On a good day, I am one meltdown away from being institutionalized!
Then I had a pregnant friend ask me for any tips on how to deal with a new baby. I have genuinely forgotten those newborn months for both of my children. I’m not sure if that’s a reaction to trauma or minor brain damage. Caffeine, wine and a good sense of humour might be a start.
The reason I started this whole blog was to expose a very real side of parenting that people didn’t talk about. From fear of being judged or fear of confirmation that they were actually losing their mind. But I don’t care what people think of me and I lost my mind ages ago.
So to anyone about to have a baby or needs to know how I “keep it together” here are some very real truths about parenting:
• At one point or another, you will hate your kid/s. You will think it, then you will immediately regret it, then berate yourself for months until the next time you think it again. Between the sleep deprivation, the hormonal changes and the isolation, there comes a point where you think that you hate your spawn.
• You’re going to yell at your kid – maybe not when they’re a newborn as such, but when that fucker is old enough to wear shoes and you can never find that god damn shoe, be prepared to unleash your fury over footwear.
• Frozen will push you to your limits – It might be Frozen, Moana, Dory, who the fuck cares. It will have music and knowing “happy family man Disney”, more than likely a fucking parent will die, and you will understand what it means to be at the end of your tether. Your tether may even be set on fire or explode. It really depends on how many times you are subjected to said movie.
• It’s not easy – just before I entered my world of darkness that is depression, I saw a friend who straight up quoted, “I find parenting really easy and fun”.
I’ll spare you the details of the extent to which I fell apart at those words, but I will say this, even if you do find parenting easy, under no circumstances say that to a frazzled woman with very small children that hasn’t slept in 6 months.
I’m not at all suggesting that I hate my kids and I hate being a mum. Far from it. If you want Zen Mumma rainbows and organic baby puree, there are 850 million places on the interwebs to get your information from. I’m just saying that every now and then, shit gets real. And that’s absolutely fine!! Don’t doubt yourself, don’t for a second think you’re the only one. You’re not. It’s hard, it’s testing, it’s physically, emotionally and spiritually gruelling. But know this, it gets easier. For every asshole phase, your kid goes through, it won’t last forever.
And if it all gets to be too much and you’re not coping, ASK FOR HELP. This is not a shameful thing to do, nor is it a sign of weakness or failure. While we’re at it, can we please fuck off that stigma right now. Say it with me, IT’S OK TO ASK FOR HELP!! O’Shea out. *mic drop*