The thought seemed to jump out at me as I was frantically loading the dishwasher, exhausted but nearly done cleaning the kitchen on a Monday night.
I don’t want to be a mommy anymore.
I stood up abruptly, a dirty dish in each hand. Where did THAT just come from? That very loud, disturbing thought?
Then I saw my sweet little son’s face and I had to run to the bathroom to compose myself.
This thought was unthinkable.
I sat on the closed toilet lid quickly trying to make sense of the shameful thought. It’s just the hormones, I told myself. After all, I’m feeling very pregnant these days. Possibly more unattractive than I have ever felt before. That had to be it. I was tired, trying to do too much. Maybe I just needed to rest and take a break.
It disturbed me on so many levels to think that I might not want to be all that goes along with being a mommy. After all, I chose to be a stay at home mom. I could have kept my full-time job, put my son in daycare, and hired a maid to cook and clean up. Or chosen not to have children, for that matter.
But since seeing my son for the first time, all I’ve really wanted to do is baby stuff. Our son sleeps with us at night, and I spend nearly every waking moment with him, too. It’s natural for me. I never believed I needed a break.
Being a mommy is what defines me as a human being now. It’s the most important job I’ll ever do. And not something you really can take a break from.
Of course this thought would not inspire action. At least not beyond some introspection and perhaps renewed efforts to take better care of myself.
It’s funny how my husband’s most striking memory of our first few days at home with our son is me sitting in the rocking chair holding our baby, tears streaming down my face, voicing the thought that everything about this new little being is now our responsibility.
Since then, it’s been tons of laughter and giggles, exciting firsts, and a new adventure nearly every day. Sure, there are plenty of tough times, too. I felt like a zombie for much of his first two years of life. But lately I’ve been happier than ever. And compared to most, our son is easy. He’s affectionate, neat, conscientious, helpful, and he’s not even three yet! It’s not his fault I had this thought.
But as my son grows, and we add another one, I’m feeling the weight of that responsibility again. Having children is such a thrilling part of life. But it’s also the greatest challenge of life.
Some days I miss my old self, the lazy evenings, getting dressed up and wining and dining with my husband. We won’t be there again for a long time. If ever.
Have you ever had thoughts like this? Please tell me if I’m not the only one.