‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Sunday, November 15, 2009

the fear of her becoming me

I have caught Sugarplum trying to keep me from breaking.

I don't know why I'm so fragile right now. I miss my solitude. I am tired of doing everything for everyone. I'm tired of people complaining. I'm tired of being taken for granted. I'm tired of not being able to work on my own projects. I miss being able to disappear for an afternoon without asking someone. I resent that Chris can disappear for a day without asking someone. I miss and resent and envy and mourn.

I love love love Sugarplum and Studley. I wouldn't trade them for the world.

I don't know what I want.

I want to not feel sad when my MiL won't eat what I've made for dinner.

I want to not feel taken for granted when I find myself alone with the kids, again.

I want more hours in the day so I can have some solitude without giving up my family time.

I want more hours in the day so I can make some progress on my own career alongside my full time job of keeping the family alive and well.

You're imagining how difficult it must be to deal with me, but really, it's not. What you hear now? It doesn't come out. It just sits there, inside. Where Sugarplum sees it.

And she does her best to keep me from breaking.


Lisa said...

It sounds like you're teaching Sugarplum to be loving and thoughtful - and honest.
Sometimes stuff is just hard, and it's o.k. to let her notice - everyone is loved and safe and this moment will pass.

And you will all be stronger and better for it. All of it.

All Adither said...

That's all part of parenting isn't it? Resentment, envy, etc.

Bella said...

amen, sister! i know what you mean. only i don't have a sugarplum. here's hoping that one of my sweet angels blossoms into a sugarplum.....someday. but mostly you are not alone.

Zip n Tizzy said...

I'm sorry to have had a (little) chuckle that your MIL won't eat you cooking. Isn't that role reserved for the children? Some people, it seems, never grow up.

As for your feelings... understandable, grown-up, mom feelings. It's intense this job! Take little steps now and someday the time will open up again. Perhaps not now, but someday this time will be a dreamlike memory.

Enjoy your Sugarplum

♥ Braja said...

Sounds like a normal day for most of the population of the world, my friend.....

Guwi said...

I have totally been there and will be again. I'm struggling with some different stuff right now, but on the periphery is always, 'I could handle this so much better if I just had two hours to think! With no interruptions!' so I guess it's always bubbling under the surface.

I have no words of wisdom to impart (not sure if you wanted them, anyway), but I've been there. You're not alone, and if your sweet girl becomes you, then she's darn lucky, in so many ways.

You're a great mom and person, and you're totally justified in feeling that way sometimes!! :)

Susan said...

Thank you all so much. I can't tell you how much I appreciate your chiming in.

At this point, my concern is that Sugarplum feels responsible for my happiness. I don't think this should be part of her childhood and I will work even harder to find a balance so she may simply be a child.

But I am very proud of her compassion, now that you mention it.

Peace Turkey said...


Janine said...

I remember these feelings.

Back then, when my kids were small, I got up very early so I could have some solitude. Of course, my kids thought they'd try to join me, but I put the stops to that immediately. My husband also thought he could cozy in on this time, but I "corrected" him too. After the sacred nature of this time was recognized by those who threatened to destroy it, all was better. I still couldn't figure out how to manage the disappearing time though, or how to browse a book store alone without looking at my watch.....but I hear that some women do it. Could be an urban myth.

for a different kind of girl said...

I want you to know you're not alone in these feelings. Many hours of many days, I am quite overwhelmed by them. Sadly, I can't say finally exploding, sometimes in the most polite of fashions, sometimes not, isn't really getting me too far. I do think there is some benefit to letting Sugarplum in when these moments strike. I know when my own youngest one runs up and lands on me, that moment of clarity helps, even if it doesn't completely take it all away.

Lisa said...

This was so lovely, but it made me achey. I think she's just very tuned in to you, and it's not a burden to her. It's a very sweet closeness. Anyway, that's my take on it, not knowing you in person.

Kelly said...

Oh dear, I feel so sad when I read this. Then I have a moment of sadness for myself, unable thus far to have a family of my own. I have more time for my own pursuits since I don't have children, but still... I guess there are rewards and sacrifices in both scenarios.

I am with Lisa on the Sugarplum thing - she is learning to be aware and responsive to other people when they are unhappy, and that is not a bad thing. Consider the alternative! She will not become your emotional caretaker because you have the awareness to prevent that from happening.

Laggin said...

Your Sugarplum sounds deserving of her name. It's scary when you find them taking care of you, isn't it? It happens with Younger, when I am failing with Eldest (or FEEL like I am failing with Eldest).

As for the not-for-granted and needing alone time and disappearing, perhaps you just disappear some afternoon when you know Chris is there and let him experience it? You know how we teach our kids through natural consequences? Sometimes we adults need those too.

I should shut up. You didn't ask for my advice, now did you? Sorry.


Susan said...

Kelly - I'm never sure how to tell my truth without making people sad - or sounding ungrateful. Thank you for not taking offense. And especially thank you for the "emotional caretaker" bit. You hit the nail on the head.

Laggin - Natural consequences! I love that. I am afraid, though, that Chris would up and leave without thinking about it. I'd have to warn Sugarplum of the plan, so she could call me when he wandered off.

Faye said...

Worry not! (Or at least try to worry less, lol) about wanting/needing time for yourself...

FWIW IMHO, your heart and soul tug restlessly to remind you of the fact you need time here and there to refill, to renew in order to be able to continue giving. It's not selfish, but essential. When you renew & recharge EVERYone benefits..

Sugarplum sounds a lot like her mom(tuned-in to the emotional ebb and flow that is part of really living life). I wonder if one of the best lessons you can share with her is seeing you take time for yourself. Seeing you show that it's important (and ok) to take time for oneself in addition to taking care of those we love and all who need us? :-)

Could/maybe/may be a great thing for you to do (and for her to see) if you pencil yourself in on the Trout Towers TLC schedule....