I feel like I need to apologise for my lack of blogging. I feel like I'm being a bad bloggy friend. I promise I've been reading your blogs, I just haven't felt profound, or inspired, or even remotely funny - all things I try to do when I blog. Just part of my goal to pretend that I'm cool like that. I have planned on writing some posts requested by some comments. I've done a lot of mental drafts, just haven't sat at my computer long enough to do more than that.
But this post got me thinking today.
Like Besty, I struggle to decide where all my anger comes from. As my siblings can attest - I had a lot as a teen too, especially certain times of the month. I remember how great it was when I got my own room, and could just hide in there for a week. Everyone was so much happier when I could withdraw myself from life, including myself.
But I haven't struggled this much with my temper since I hit 20. So why to I go from mildly upset to a lunatic in 3 sentences?
I really did NOT like the idea that mommy rage could be some form of "buyers remorse." I love my kids, and have never once regretted the decision to have them. I have however really hated their actions, or my reactions to them.
Yes, I have a raving demon within me. Personally, 90% of the time it’s manifest because of the kids - something they did. For me I don’t think it’s ever been “buyers remorse”. With me it’s all about control.
Think about it: for the past X # of years, you were in control of everything you did. You decided where you wanted to go. You decided what to wear. You decided who to play with, what to eat, how to behave. Especially after high school, you had almost complete control over everything in your life.
Did you want a clean room? That’s your job. Did you want straight A’s? You can control that too. Hate the feel of your place? Just move somewhere else. Your success (or lack of it) was mostly a product of your effort.
Having kids changes that completely. No matter how much I clean, someone else is there to mess it up. No matter how much I play with my kids, they want more. No matter how nice I am to them, they will fight with each other. I no longer have complete control over the environment I live in. I can be as nice and wonderful and clean and perfect as I can try, but these other creatures inflict their own wants and needs and emotions directly on my life.
For me the monster usually surfaces when that control is completely lost - kids trying to kill each other over a toy, painting walls with diaper contents, breaking something after they’ve been told to leave it alone. I still want the control over my life I had 5 years ago.
But the joys of having my children are worth taming this monster. To hear them giggling together as they have a water party in my basement, even when it's over our very nice new carpet - isn't that worth the effort of cleaning it up? It's only water. Or watching them discover a strange new bug - does my need to get milk really demand them to come this very second away from the fascination?
At the end of the day, when all is said and done, I am happy to be a mom. There is nothing more rewarding. My lack of control over myself (let alone everything else), is very disturbing to me. But since one of the reasons we are here is to gain control over our bodies, I just have to keep on trying. Eventually, I will be able to let the frustrations roll off my back with ease. There IS a good chance that that will not happen until my kids have left the house and aren't there to test it so frequently. But I won't give up trying until I succeed. Because I owe it, to my kids, to my spouse, and to me.