Stefani's most-fantastical-reads book montage

Crooked Kingdom
Six of Crows
Yellow Brick War
The Wicked Will Rise
Charm & Strange
Their Fractured Light
These Broken Stars
Big Little Lies
I'll Be There
Red Queen

Stefani's favorite books »

Thursday, July 19, 2012


This post has been a few weeks in the making... it started as a few fleeting thoughts and built until it was all consuming, leaving me sitting in the bathroom, calling my best friend, and driving out to see her after my children were in bed [yes, my husband was home]. I broke down - I cried like a baby all the way to her house and *this* song came on while I was listening to Pandora. I've heard it a million times but for the first time it applied to parenting, not being in a relationship, and it hit home. HARD.

I haven't worked since February 20th. I got up and went to work on the 21st but I only made it ten minutes before the contractions started and I got my ass landed on bed rest. That means for the past FIVE months, I have pretty much been confined to my house. Now obviously, since Cohen has arrived I have gotten out and done things but still - I'm at home. A lot. I've never been one of those people who did well with just hanging out at the house - I like having things to do, I like my job, and I like having a schedule that is demanding enough to keep me on track. So, as you might imagine, [especially if you have small children at home with you] being a summer SAHM is driving me bat-shit-crazy.

Before I really dive in, I need to say that the single factor that has kept me from writing this post earlier is fear. Fear of what other people [who I know IRL and via the interwebs] would think of me. Fear of what I would think of me looking back on it six months or a year from now. But in the past few weeks I have talked to several moms with kids around the same age as mine and I have discovered something shocking - I'm not actually crazy. I know, my mind was blown too.

So, here it goes.

I'm not cut out for the stay-at-home mom gig. Some of my closest friends are SAHM's and child care providers and they are my heroes. I don't mean that jokingly - I look at them with reverence because I can't understand how they do it day after day and stay sane. I love my kids. I ADORE them. I would step in front of a bullet in a heartbeat for them without thinking. I would give anything in this world to ensure them a healthy and happy life. The hugs and snuggles and kisses I get throughout the day are everything that I hoped motherhood would be. Waking up Addison by crawling in bed with her and cuddling, having Cohen sleep on my chest, hearing, "I love you mommy!" out of the blue - those are all things that get me out of bed in the morning after the long nights. BUT [and there is a big ole fat BUTT here] the whining, crying, tantrums, neediness, flat out craziness, and epic quantities of shit [literally] is all more than I can take most days. I think I could kind of handle it when it was just Addison - we could go places and do things according to her schedule and I could keep her pretty well entertained. But throwing Cohen into the mix, who gets a heat rash the second we step outside, seriously limits what we can do, where we can do it, and when we can go. Plus, leaving the house with a potty-training-in-progress 2 1/2 year old and a 11 week old is like packing for a month long vacation and a lot of the time it's more work than it's worth. [As a side note, how we decided to potty train our daughter RIGHT AFTER HAVING A NEWBORN is lost on me... bad idea... EPIC bad idea. But that, my friends, is another post all on it's own]. So we stay home. A lot. And because I fear being dubbed a bad mom for letting my child sit in front of the TV watching Dora or Diego or Guppies all day long, I feel obligated to plan activities to keep her entertained. Planning those days is exhausting, let alone executing the plans. So, a week ago I found myself fifteen pairs of poopy panties deep in shit [not my own, thankyouverymuch] and the icing on the cake was the puddle of diarrhea that I was mopping up on the bathroom floor and off my daughter. I hadn't eaten in, I don't know, 36 hours probably, slept at best three or four hours at a time the night before and had one of the WHINIEST days ever with Addison. I lost it. I managed to get her in the tub and rinsed off and then scrubbed clean and let her play while I sat outside the door in the hall and bawled my eyes out. I felt like the world's worst mother - I was so, SO sick of the accidents that by the time the diarrhea occurred I was fuming mad. So, to avoid taking it out on her I sat in the hall and cried. Who gets mad at their kid for having diarrhea???? What kind of mother feels like that?? I begged Derek to let me go out and mow the lawn while he fed the kids and put them to bed - I BEGGED for manual labor - anything that got me out of the house and alone for a few minutes. After I finished, I called my best friend [who was thankfully in town] and bawled on the phone to her. After my shower I headed to meet up with her and just vent - something I needed so badly. And that was the first time someone told me that they had felt the same way... I can't really explain what it felt like but just knowing that I wasn't the only one who wasn't basking in the glow of 'relaxing' at home with my kids made me feel so much better. And since then, I've had the same conversation, and read similar posts to this, and come to the conclusion that it is a cruel joke that NO ONE talks about this until someone has a mental break. If I had known that other mom's really did want to pull their hair out, or would actually pay to pee in private, I might have been better prepared for what was coming.

I guess it shouldn't have been a shock - I dealt with PPD with Addison and I kind of assumed it would rear it's ugly head again this time around. In fact, there is proof of it here. I'm not eating - not because it's a conscious decision, but I don't get hungry and truthfully, most days, I don't have time to make food... if Derek hadn't yelled at me yesterday I'm pretty sure it would have been almost two days since my last meal... I sleep when I can but even if Cohen sleeps through the night - which he's done officially twice - I still have to wake up and pump and since my supply is sucky right now [sorry TMI] it takes me almost 30 minutes to get the 8 or so ounces I need to get us through the night. My emotions are all screwy - whether it's due to hormones or just stress, I have no idea. I get angry way to easily - if you heard my rant about how pictures when the other night you'll understand that one and I feel like half the time I'm on the verge of breaking down and crying. So yes, I called my doctor's office today and maybe a little tweak to my meds is all it'll take. I sincerely hope so because I can't take feeling like this for another month before I go back to work - I'll lose my mind.

I'm not proud of the feelings that I've had these past few weeks and, although I know my kids are well taken care of and well loved, I don't feel like I've been the best mama that I could be lately. I don't like the person I've become under all this stress and I don't want it to rub off on my babies. I need to get out of the house - to workout, to work in my classroom, to see friends... anything to feel a little more like me again and a little less like the frazzled mom I feel like I've become.

This shit was SO not in the parenting classes... false advertising. I'm suing someone.  

Who I Am Hates Who I've Been
Relient K

I watched the proverbial sunrise
Coming up over the Pacific and
You might think I'm losing my mind,
But I will shy away from the specifics...

'cause I don't want you to know where I am
'cause then you'll see my heart
In the saddest state it's ever been.

This is no place to try and live my life.

Stop right there. That's exactly where I lost it.
See that line. Well I never should have crossed it.
Stop right there. Well I never should have said
That it's the very moment that
I wish that I could take back.

I'm sorry for the person I became.
I'm sorry that it took so long for me to change.
I'm ready to be sure I never become that way again
'cause who I am hates who I've been.
Who I am hates who I've been.

I talk to absolutely no one.
Couldn't keep to myself enough.
And the things bottled inside have finally begun
To create so much pressure that I'll soon blow up.

I heard the reverberating footsteps
Synching up to the beating of my heart,
And I was positive that unless I got myself together,
I would watch me fall apart.

And I can't let that happen again
'cause then you'll see my heart
In the saddest state it's ever been.

This is no place to try and live my life.

Who I am hates who I've been
And who I am will take the second chance you gave me.
Who I am hates who I've been
'cause who I've been only ever made me...

So sorry for the person I became.
So sorry that it took so long for me to change.
I'm ready to be sure I never become that way again
'cause who I am hates who I've been.
Who I am hates who I've been.


  1. Oh my sweet friend. It's so hard. I feel the same way. I'm so glad to know that I'm not alone as well. It's so hard. I only have one, but the filling of the days for her when I'm alone so much is so daunting. Some women are cut out for it and others aren't. At least we're being honest about it. It doesn't mean we love our children any less. I wish you lived near me so I could drive to your house and cry :)

  2. O sweetie. It's true. We all feel this way. Saturday, I broke. I bawled when we went for the sibling hospital tour and Landon was a terror. we had to leave within 5 minutes. He was screaming and hitting and biting my husband. The hormones, the impending baby, the HORRIBLE 3s rearing their ugly head, my inability to manhandle him this pregnant...it all came crashing down. When we got home we sent him to his room and after awhile I went in...tears and all. I bawled with him. I told him that when he was like this, it made me sad. Maybe that wasn't the right thing to do but he did calm down a bit and come to me for a hug. He knows empathy. It's hard. I didn't want to mask my emotions...

    Good for you calling to get your meds looked at. No one is super mom...I promise. The super mom is the one who knows how to take care of herself for her babies. There are days I let him zone out to Ice Age so I can zone out too...AND I WORK ALL DAY :). SAHMing needs to come with a medal because I couldn't do it either.

    So I just rambled a lot but just know you aren't alone. I am no best friend down the road but never hesitate to email me in the wee hours...I will be up soon too :)


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