Monday, August 23, 2010

The Dichotomy of Mothering Babies

Motherhood is definitely a strange journey. And, those cute little bundles of joy sure know how to drag a mother around on an emotional leash. One minute I'm tearing my hair out and on the verge of tears and the next, I'm laughing hysterically at something either Aaron or Adrian is doing.

I think it is the mothering of a baby that more distinctly brings out the dichotomy of motherhood. Sure, I had the swings of emotions from one end of the spectrum to the opposite with the three year old Aaron last year but nothing as contrasting as now. I guess its the lack of sleep that exaggerates the whole effect.

A thought that has been replaying itself many times over the past month is "Oh no, this is going to be the last time we have a cute little baby in the house." I really think I'm done. No more kids coming out of me. This makes Adrian and all his baby time extremely cherished.


What often happens is that two seconds after I have the above thought, I have the exact opposite. "I can't wait for this baby to grow up so that I don't have to be putting him to sleep/changing his nappy/entertaining him/cleaning up his mess etc".

So, I want them to be babies but I don't.

I started this post in the morning and am only finishing it up now at 8pm. Since the morning, I have been thinking about this dichotomy. I wondered if the awareness of those intense, negatively charged episodes would lesson them or somehow soften them. Yes and No. Maybe a little.

Adrian was incredibly over stimulated and started crying each time I tried to put him to bed. I started getting frustrated each time and just gave up and allowed him to stay up instead. Yes, bad parenting but I was just too lazy to do the work and feel all frustrated and negative. Finally, when I did resolve to put him to sleep, I found that there wasn't all that much frustration. And when he was asleep, I stood there and looked at him, enjoying all the positive emotions instead.

I know that he's going to be up again soon and I'll probably get a little frustrated again but it will pass and then we'll swing to the happy side again.

Back and forth. Up and down. Over and over again.

I'm sure the see-saw effect will lesson as it did with Aaron. After that, I suppose its going to be the teenage years that drive me nuts. those years come with loss of sleep as well?


Mike said...

"teenage years"

I think we've warned you already about the teenage years. Just keep that in the back of your mind when you THINK things are going badly.

Scott and Elaine said...

I totally understand your swings of emotions Amanda. I've experienced them already many times. Earlier when Isabella was younger and harder to manage,.. I wished she would grow faster. Now she's at such an adorable stage.. I keep saying to her, that I'd like to keep her that way. Now, another one is on the way, I am getting extremely nervous how I'm going to cope with 2 and still keep sane. Hopefully, my experience with raising Isabella will kick in and all my worry will be for nothing. However, I am not looking forward to the sleepless nights as I am one of those people who really cherishes and needs good sleep, otherwise I go mad.

elizabeth embracing life said...

I would never have thought that kids grow up in a blink of an eye, but you know what they do. I read once that the days are long, but the months are fast and it's true.

We survive and live to tell the many stories, and then we pass along to those younger moms, when we see them drinking coffee to stay away, and faking that smile of love and compassion one moment, and then truly eating up the moment with that real love and compassion. It's crazy we all don't end up in the looney-bin.