Tales From the Nursery

Tales From the Nursery: The Toddler Years

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Why I’m Not Winning Mom of the Year

Some days I think I’m an awesome mom.  I take care of my little girl – she’s clothed, fed, clean (usually), and has frequent diaper changes.  I breastfeed.  I cloth diaper.

While I may do those things, it doesn’t mean I’m perfect.  I’m not even close to perfect.

My house.. is a mess.  My husband still makes a lot of our dinners and still does extra chores that he picked up shortly before I gave birth.  I love him for it, but y’know, it makes me question myself.

My daughter is rather needy.  This is true, so I spend a lot of time and energy trying to keep her happy or calming her down because she’s unhappy.  She’s just about 8 months old and is still pretty clingy.  Sure, I love the cuddles and all but she has a knack for being the most clingy when I absolutely cannot be holding her.

Like when I’m trying to make our lunch.

I hate to admit it, but some days I think I’m going to lose my cool.

Correction, I do lose my cool – just in a modified fashion.

I will not harm her.  I couldn’t do that, even if my primal reaction is that of aggression.  But, I have thrown inanimate objects across the room and have yelled out in anger and frustration.

This isn’t my first reaction when she’s crying, whining, and/or tugging on me.  But, when she’s having a day (like this morning) where it is non-stop… well, my patience begins to wear thin.  My soothing voice and words get an edge to them.  It boils up.

I try to tend to it before boiling over, but when.it.just.won’t.stop. I feel like I’m losing my damn mind.

She’s not at an age where I can really reason with her.  I try to explain that I cannot hold her while making lunch, but she doesn’t really understand the concept.  She just wants to be held.  (Most days she’s content to play in her chair or on the kitchen floor as I prepare lunch but some days… well, she cries until she’s hyperventilating.)

Do I think I’m a bad mom? No.

Well, sometimes I think I am, but I know deep down I’m not.  I’m just not winning any awards.

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Comments ( 20 )

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  1. Mrs. Smitty June 28, 2011 Reply

    I could have written this post today. My toddler is nothing but whines and boredom (regardless of the options and activities I try to present to her) and my itty bitty girl just wants to be held.. ALL DAY LONG.

    I just want 10 minutes.

  2. Jo June 28, 2011 Reply

    yep. most days i think i suck!

  3. Carolyn June 28, 2011 Reply

    Girl, we’ve all been there. And sometimes it helps just to vent! I have 2 kids, and i’m not having anymore just because I’m not in any shape to deal with a child that I can’t have a conversation with. =P Even still, I have those days and I KNOW I’m not gonna win any “mom of the year” award! On those day, say an extra “i love you” to your spouse…he probably needs it! Hang in there!

  4. April G June 28, 2011 Reply

    Hang in there! I know some days can be extra frustrating, but we all have rough days. It doesn’t make us bad mamas! :)April

  5. Lori B June 28, 2011 Reply

    Oh Darcy, I have no major words of wisdom. Can only offer commiseration from a mommy who completely understands! About 90% of the time I feel like I’m doing ANYTHING well, just barely enough sometimes…and even not that. I admit that my floor hasn’t been vacuumed in over a week. MOUNDS of laundry to do. Dinner will have to be something nuked. And I really could go on and on about the sorry state of the Brouse House.

    Do what you can. What you can’t…well so be it. If you need to beat the wall with a pillow to vent some steam. Do it! (I understand that anger born of frustration and KNOW as you do that we’d never do anything to hurt the wee ones…but we do get angry. We’re human for heavens sake.)

    My only suggestion is to see if she’d take to a carrier if even only for 10-15 minute stretches at a time. That’s time enough to make a quick lunch, or fold laundry. I’d suggest one that holds baby right next to your body. My Moby wrap was great for when my guy was newborn, but now my Ergo carrier works best.

    Know that all mommys know the feeling…you are NOT alone! **Hugs!!** Hang in there girl! :)brousehouse

    • Darcy June 28, 2011 Reply

      Thanks :)

      She likes being in our Ergo for walks. Now she’s too curious and reachy. Last time I made dinner with her in it – omg – she was so squirmy trying to turn around and grab for everything. It was a bit dangerous :(DarcyZalewski

  6. Lindsay June 28, 2011 Reply

    It absolutely does NOT make you a bad mom. We’ve all those days where nothing seems to go right and our kids are driving us up a freaking wall. It’s human! It’s knowing how to handle it and not letting it overtake us that makes us good moms.

  7. carol anne June 28, 2011 Reply

    I am feeling for you! My suggestion would also be a carrier. They make them so you can hold them on your hip — then she will think she is more involved with what you are doing :) When she is tired of that, give her something you wouldn’t normally give to her. A spatula and a pot lid, a whisk, etc When my oldest ‘clinger’ was that age, we had a drawer in the kitchen (that was old and she couldn’t push closed) that I had filled with those type of things and I would open it to distract her.
    Oh, and my youngest is 20 months old and my husband is still doing those extra things around the house that he picked up when I was pregnant. And he cooks dinner EVERY night (mostly because I can’t cook, haha)
    Hang in there. Pretty soon she will be running :Dmikeyswife

    • Darcy July 3, 2011 Reply

      I keep forgetting the Ergo can do a hip position – I need to try that! I try to give her measuring cups and stuff, but when she’s really fussy I can’t seem to distract her!DarcyZalewski

  8. danielle b June 28, 2011 Reply

    This sounds just like my almost 6 month old. Some days are harder and some are ok. He usually only gives me enough time to make my food before he cries. I keep hoping it will get better.OCFObsessedcook

  9. Self Sagacity June 28, 2011 Reply

    Hi Darcy, I just wanted to stop by here first and thank you for playing Stumble Tuesday, thanks for stumbling my post. I now will go back and get your link and stumble you. Have a great day.

  10. Mariah June 28, 2011 Reply

    Thank you for the honesty in this post. I, like many moms, can completely relate to everything you said! There are moments when I just get frustrated. I like to think I’m growing in my patience but I’m not that perfect mom picture of patience and understanding when I’m tired and just want W to play or something! At least your husband is helping out. I think the post-baby life is a longer period of adjustment than any of us realize!formulamom

  11. Nicole June 28, 2011 Reply

    I have been there, and I am there again. I have a two year old and a (almost) 5 month old. Today my husband went to work and I wanted to cry. The baby wanted to be held ALL THE TIME and the toddler followed me around with the bouncer telling me he wanted me to put the baby down so I would hold him. I think you ARE the mom of the year because you admit your faults. Rock On!

    • Darcy July 3, 2011 Reply

      Thanks Nicole! It’s nice knowing I’m not alone and I feel like I can get through it better when I openly admit these things.DarcyZalewski

  12. Jamie McMillan June 30, 2011 Reply

    I’ve been known to say “oh for the love of god…will you just let me…make your lunch…clean your mess up…etc” on an almost daily basis. As if that will work :) And at least once a week I take my yelling 10 month old down to my neighbors so I can get his breakfast and my coffee ready in peace :)

  13. Laura O in AK July 3, 2011 Reply

    You are so not alone! I remember wanting to bounce my extra fussy baby across the room after hours of frustration trying to get him to nurse (when he was struggling.) Lack of sleep often does it for me.LauraOinAK

  14. Not a Perfect Mom July 3, 2011 Reply

    my third one was exactly like that, and she was my first girl.
    In order to do anything that required the use of my hands I had to sling her…luckily right around 10 months when she started crawling she became more independent…hang in there!notaperfectmama

    • Darcy July 3, 2011 Reply

      She’s still learning how to crawl. I wouldn’t be surprised if she gets more independent once she’s more mobile!DarcyZalewski

  15. Maria July 4, 2011 Reply

    I feel for you! I have two higher needs kids and a husband who doesn’t help. I have high standards about the cleanliness of my house and I can’t seem to chill out about it! We looked into getting help but it was too expensive. Someday we will get a babysitter and go on a date, I think that would help a lot! The last time we went out was a frend’s wedding more than 3 years ago!

  16. JulieK July 4, 2011 Reply

    I have the same problem – my son was always wanting to be picked up. NEVER liked me to be doing something else. Have you tried using a baby carrier like an Ergo and carrying her on your back while you get stuff done? I didn’t HAVE an Ergo at the time, but if I would have tried this. At 16 months, my hubby STILL is doing more than his “fair share” of the housework, and yes, I feel bad about it… I have more bad wife moments than bad mom moments. But trust me. I have both from time to time! :)
    Hang in there – it gets better. Once she is walking she will not be nearly as clingy I bet! ;0)

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