Number 4 came out of the womb like a bat out of hell.
She was not normal.
She cried a lot.
Unless I held her.
She didn’t want to sleep much.
Unless I held her.
She wouldn’t take a bottle.
I had to nurse her.
It was a little draining at times, but I have to be honest.
I liked that she needed me.
She had to have me.
No one else could calm her down.
No one else could make her happy.
To this one little person, the whole entire world revolved around me.
I liked feeling needed.
I felt important.
But then I came to depend upon feeling needed.
It wasn’t healthy.
For either one of us.
I loosened up a little bit over time.
But not much.
And now, seven years later, I have created this situation for myself where my whole identity is as a mom.
Where I have deluded myself into thinking that nothing will run smoothly unless I have control over it.
And if I let go of complete and total control, well, where does that leave me?
I’m supposed to be a mom to these kids 24/7.
If I’m not doing that, well…
What is my purpose?
This codependency thing I’ve got going on is not good.
When I started on this motherhood journey, I made it clear that I wanted to be a stay at home mom.
A full-time, non-stop, around-the-clock-mom.
I was wrong.
It’s not enough.
I feel a little guilty acknowledging this.
But I want more.
I want my own identity.
Separate from being a mom.
I have put too much pressure on myself, and I have created an unhealthy environment for myself.
And the kids.
And my husband.
Now don’t get me wrong.
I’m not looking for a 9-5 job.
I know what I want to do, and making it happen will involve some creativity and some thinking outside the box.
But it will also require me to let go.
To loosen the grip on the reins.
To allow someone else to take the lead.
I don’t have to do everything for my kids.
And, contrary to what I’d like to believe,
my way is not the only way.
(And don’t tell my husband I said this, but maybe my way isn’t even always the best way).
Admitting that I want a break, that I want something else, that maybe I want to establish a career for myself?
In fact, it might be more than okay.
It might be totally awesome!
It doesn’t mean that I don’t love being a mom.
Allowing someone else to take the kids to basketball practice or a swim meet is okay.
It doesn’t mean that I love my kids any less.
Surrendering some control to my husband is okay.
I mean, he’s their father, for Christ’s sake.
I have a loving, supportive husband who wants to be involved in his children’s lives.
Instead of looking at that as a blessing, I’ve spent many years feeling threatened by that.
Threatened by my husband.
We are on the same team for crying out loud.
Why haven’t I leaned on my number one teammate more?
It won’t diminish my importance or value in our children’s lives.
No matter what, my children still need me.
But they also need me to be happy.
Casting the net of support available to my children (and me) far and wide does not make me a bad mom.
I’m pretty sure,
it’s going to make me a better one.
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