Saturday, March 8, 2014

Emotionally drained

This past week has been exhausting. I feel like I’ve been pulled a million different directions.
Sometimes I wonder--what is more exhausting, physical exercise or emotional distress? I’d say emotional distress for sure.

Some people know how to drain the life out of you—if you let him.

I have to be careful to not allow myself to be drained. It’s hard when you want everyone to be happy and for things to not get out of control.

But then I have to ask myself—why should everyone be happy and what does out of control really mean?

I’ve learned the hard way that when I try to control things, I end up in utter chaos and completely wiped out emotionally. It’s hard to just let things go, but I have to remind myself that everyone is responsible for their own decisions and it’s not my job to make their life easier.

Also, just because someone is happy now, that doesn’t mean they will be happy later on. For example?
My daughter is now a teen and trying to find her independence and push the boundaries. Luckily it’s all pretty normal stuff, but it still requires punishment.

I understand that it’s okay to make her mad NOW in order to set her up for happiness LATER in life, but getting to that point is rough. It’s rough on all my relationships.

Just like all couples, I am the easy one and Robby is the strict one. I try hard to be strict, but it gets exhausting to always be “by the book.”

And just like all couples who want their children to grow up to be good adults, we fight over punishments and behaviors and how to co-parent in a world where there is another parent in the next town over who also gets a say-so in my daughter’s life.

And let’s not forget all the unsolicited, and some solicited, advice I get from grandparents, siblings, friends, co-workers, teachers, neighbors, etc.

While I need help, all the extra voices in my head tend to make decisions even harder. It’s like co-parenting with a village, but in the end, I am the one who has to make the ultimate decision. I am the one who has to make decisions that might make my children grow into productive adults or make them become larger children that suck the life out of me until I die.

I am the one who has to keep the ex in the loop while trying to maintain boundaries that don’t allow him to insult my parenting skills or make me feel like I need to defend the way I raise my children.

I am the one who feels the need to explain why I made a decision and why I think it was a good one.
Parenting comes with enough guilt and I’m not sure why I feel the need to constantly second guess my parenting skills.

At the end of the day, I have to depend on myself to come to terms with my ability to parent, my ability to be strong, my ability to maintain my boundaries and my knowledge that future happiness is something you have to work hard for and it doesn’t show up when you lie down and give up because things are tough.

I realized this week, I am a good parent. I’m not doing anything to hurt my children and I’m not going to let you make me think I am because you have insecurities and you would rather blame me than believe you have no idea what you are talking about.

I realize that things may seem black and white to some people, but I don’t see it that way and I don’t have to if I don’t want to. I have to make the ultimate decision so I have to make a choice I can live with.

I realized that there are always going to be people who want to make me doubt myself and there are some people who on some hidden level need me to doubt myself. It must be scary for them to encounter me—and if they aren’t scared, then they must not be living in reality.

It’s tough to be a mom—it’s tough to be a woman. It’s tough to be that person who is supposed to be everyone’s cheerleader and keep things moving smoothly but to also appear somewhat fragile so she doesn’t scare people away.

I interviewed a woman recently and she said, “My only downfall was that I was ‘before my time.’”
She said men didn’t know what to think about her because she was a good business person—she asked questions and called people out on their bullshit.

“If I was a man, I would have been applauded for being a great businessman, but I am a woman so I was the B-word,” she said.

Sometimes I wonder how I would be treated if I was a man and then I quickly realize there isn’t enough money in the world to make me ever want to be a man.

I’m not sure if it’s my quiet nature or if there is something else I am doing that makes people not take me seriously?

My husband always says, “Don’t mistake my politeness for weakness.”

I like that statement. I wanted to scream that phrase at the top of my lungs by the end of this week. To be honest, I wanted to just scream anything.

But most importantly, I just wanted to scream, “Give me a break!!!”

Seriously, give me a break.

I got this. I can do this. I’ve been doing this. I’m pretty damn good at it. But the constant second guessing coming from all angles is going to make me forget that I can do this.

Pretty sure that last sentence was written for me. I guess I need to be mad at myself for forgetting that. I guess I need to give myself a break, too.

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