On Saturday night around 9 PM Eric and I were laying in bed with Charlotte, who was somehow on top of both of us after she refused to go to bed and also managed to Houdini the hell out of her crib. She was finally falling asleep after our bedtime routine somehow managed to cross over into the 2 hour range. I had not eaten in hours, Eric had barely eaten all day, we were tired and irritable and we lost a battle to a 2 year old. Now that she got out of the crib I had horrible thoughts of a future of her never going to sleep again. Look, I know the kid eventually will go into a “big girl bed”, but that time is not now. You should all have an idea of how Charlotte is with sleeping if you’ve read my blog for the past 2 years. She sucks the big one. A bed is not going to solve my problem. A bed is only going to grow my problem into an enormous shit bag that I am not prepared to deal with. It is not time for a bed. But I digress.
Anyway, Eric was falling asleep and I was texting my mom through rage/desperation tears. I kept saying how I can’t handle this anymore. I’ve sleep trained her so many times and it never seems to stick. I am always fucking up the sleep with her somehow. And then I said it. I said I wished I never had a kid. And as soon as I hit send the tears came hot and heavy out of my exhaustion-lined eyelids, but they were true. My mom didn’t berate me. She said think of all the times she is loving and sweet and all that. And of course I think of those times, but they are hard to put in the forefront of your mind when you are in the middle of a woe-is-me pity party.
Obviously I don’t want to erase time and never have Charlotte. She is the greatest thing to ever happen to me and I love her more than I thought I could love anything. But being a mother is also the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. It is exhausting and painful and fucking hard. It is also rewarding and wonderful. But I think, especially with social media, we see far too much of the wonderful side and not enough of the late night tears on behalf of moms (and dads too, I’m sure). It can be difficult to say things like you miss your old life, especially during a time when your toddler refuses to sleep on their own, when you know you will get shit on for saying it. You’ll get responses like, “you should be thankful you can even have children when so many people can’t.” “You should never complain about the treasures sent from Jesus that are your offspring.” You know, things similar to that. And of COURSE I am thankful that I was able to have a child. I know I am blessed to have her, really, I know it. But when things get hard I think you have to be able to say how you feel without reservations.
I am every lucky to have moms in my life who understand my feelings. It’s never going to be all sunshine and rainbows. I would bet my life that most moms out there sometimes long for the days of not having to be someone’s mother 24/7. Where we can eat takeout and watch Netflix and go to a movie whenever we want. I bet many of us can feel jealous of our single friends, dancing the night away in bars with no human alarm clock to wake them up the next morning. But we’re afraid to say it. We’re afraid to say anything other than #blessed.
So I never meant to say the words “I wish I never had a kid.” But on this Saturday night, they were true. I love my girl. She is the moon and the sun and the stars. I would give up my life for her. In fact, in some ways, I already have. And it’s OK to break down sometimes. We are only human after all.