Saturday, February 23, 2008

The truth about motherhood

Hello from San Diego. I'm here visiting my sister, who just had a baby -- her second, an adorable, healthy, and totally mellow baby boy. And it's the mellow part I want to talk about today: Of course, I'm thrilled that my sister has been blessed with an easy baby, but part of me is envious, too.

It's not really because my son, Carson, screamed for the first six months of his life (I wouldn't wish colic on anyone) or the fact that he whined for the next four months. But it's really because in the four days I've been here, my toddler has cried more than her infant. I probably should mention that Carson is 14 months old (AKA: too old to be having newborn-style meltdowns all the time).

In fact, as I'm sitting here typing, I'm recovering from one of Carson's meltdowns, or as my sister, my mom and I have all named it "the meltdown that will go down in infamy." It started in the car, and then continued in the restaurant. He screamed and kicked. He threw food and wailed. He drew a crowd of onlookers, and a few dirty looks. He nearly was the cause of a car accident.

And this went on for about three hours.

I don't know where I'm going with this post. I'm kind of discouraged, kind of tired, and kind of in need of a drink (I know, it's 2 p.m. -- shame on me). I guess what I'm trying to say is that motherhood is not all giggles and cupcakes. Frankly, I believe it's the most exhausting job in the world.

And I'm not going to follow this up with "but it's such a joy and such a blessing." Of course it is. But I think it's OK to just take a deep sigh and be honest about the fact that my son nearly kicked my butt today.

Maybe things will be better tomorrow. (And, just to remind myself, I'm including a photo from an outing a few days ago, to the beach in La Jolla where Carson walked on the sand for the first time.)


Mimi said...

Deep breath, Sarah... and HUGS! (I laughed at your comment about Carson "kicking your butt" today) Motherhood is extremely hard and exhausting. We don't get nearly enough credit as we deserve. I have a feeling that Carson will be the most well-mannered, well-behaved teenage boy.. and no one will ever guess he gave you hell as a baby. :P

Sarah/A Full Plate said...

Thanks so much for the encouragement Mimi! What a day! :)

k/ said...

It is by far the HARDEST job I've ever done and it is the job I have failed most at..and it is lovely a lot of the time but a LOT of the time it blows...there is no way to sugar coat that. Be well and sorry you had to go through it. I so feel for mamas when kids are melting down. My kids have always been fabulous at throwing tantrums-among the best out there. Liv still is and she is 7 1/2. God bless us all. k

k/ said...

One more thing...JUST after I read your post and commented on how challenging mamahood is for me as well--I checked emails. This is what Olivia sent me, "Mom,
I just hurt my eye and the door slammed it. It dosen't hurt right now but it did and I think that is a problem. Audrey is upstairs as happy as a bee. I am downstairs doing this. I love you so much. I think you open up my heart. (Well at least that is what it feels like) You will always be in my heart. You are one of the greatest things that god ever gave to me. I think you are very smart, kind, a very very hard worker, a very smart women, you are an awesome mommy to me and Audrey! I think you should be crowned for being the best mommy ever! You rock! Olivia Bliss Wilkinson P.S. you sing like a sweetheart!" I will say in mid meltdown I forget how dear, dear, dear she is because it is so dreadful in the trenches BUT then this pops into my inbox and I can't believe I've been blessed with such a wonderful human being as Liv in my life. I agree with Meme ---these days will pay off. if we can survive them. k

Pollywog Baby said...


I know you keep telling me what a darling boy I have in Chicken Little but even now there are days I have to talk myself out of eating him for dinner. At least you have your mother and sister with you! Hugs,

Sarah/A Full Plate said...

Katie, I just love the fact that your girls email you!! It is so sweet to think of your child sending you an EMAIL! I guess, because mine can't even talk yet, this just seems so amazing and impossible! But, I loved how your story reminded me that one day I'll be sitting at my computer and I'll get an email from Carson -- as sweet as Olivia's note was.

Annette, thanks for your note, too! Such great encouragement!

tami said...

My youngest had HUGE meltdowns. I hardly wanted to take him out in public. We had his tonsils and adnoids taken out-Changed our lives! Totally changed everything about him. He is fourteen and Wendi will vouch for me, he is nice guy.
PS- Never had ear infections or sore throats-just sleep apnea.