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Being a parent, a mother can be overwhelming. There are days when I feel shackled, unable do anything on a whim. There is always a routine I need to stick to, a timetable I need to follow. A certain inflexibility has crept in. Most things need to go as planned. In order to find those few moments just for myself. Times when I try not to be a worrying mother. So it’s always one chore after the other waiting for a few days off. In between everything though the realisation dawns that you don’t really get to take a day off from being a mum. On my worse days, that is what makes me breathless and anxious. And I wonder if this is how life is going to be from now on.
So many things have changed now that I have a toddler in tow. Waking up when I want to or sleeping whenever I want to seem like a distant dream now. All simple things really but still. There was a time when I loved sleeping and reading on flights. Or, curling up with a book for the whole day on a holiday without worrying about anything else. Everything happens differently now.
Being a mother, a parent is tough because now you are responsible. And being responsible 24X7 is anything but easy. It’s like have a night shift daily with no mornings in between. I think parents will know what I’m talking about. What I’m probably trying to say is, it sometimes gets a little too much especially with a baby or a toddler at home. Perhaps, it gets easier when they grow up.
Finding time for myself is sometimes impossible now. I haven’t been to the parlour for months, something which I could do anytime before. Well, now where’s the time? 5 days out of 7, I’m too busy to go anywhere. The time I find, I try to spend reading or writing which I can’t compromise on. And the remaining 2 days? Well, I just want to hide at home to rest as much as possible. It’s not as bad as it sounds but it’s definitely taxing.
Of course, one hug from M, her smile or her kisses makes me forget everything. And as cliched as it sounds makes everything worth it but that doesn’t take away from the fact that my life is not as carefree as it used to be before.
Any new project I take up at work, I need to make sure that I leave office in time to pick her up because I cannot keep her waiting. I don’t want to as well. But sometimes I just feel that the freedom that I was used to earlier is now gone. I am always running against time. Always.
There’s no flexibility in my schedule. If there’s too much work at the office I still need to do that within the 9-hour time frame. And it’s not always easy to do that. I feel like I’m always on the run with this fear of missing the last bus out. I’m always on the clock, timing myself.
Then there are those decisions that you need to take, some compromises or sacrifices. They sort of come with the territory, I suppose. I have, for example, categorically told at work that I can’t be travelling to the client site even for a short term. I work in an industry where your growth often depends on working from the client location. The truth is even before M I wasn’t much inclined towards living abroad. But then I had a choice to take up short term assignments if they aided my career.
I want to be here for her. No second thoughts there. I do know parents who leave their kids with grandparents and go abroad to pursue their careers. They are really strong if you ask me. It’s not an easy step to take but they still do it. I’m just not as brave or as strong as them for I need to be with M at the end of the day, every day. I need to kiss her goodnight. I just do. But there are moments when I see S or my sister travelling and wonder if I will ever have that freedom to go out without being worried or even guilty. If at every juncture of my career it won’t be an either-or decision?
#Motherhood is not always hugs and kisses, there are some difficult, stressful and selfish moments too. Click To Tweet
It’s not that I’m not doing the things I want to because I very much am. I’m working which I wanted to. I’m writing and reading like I wanted to but everything always has to fit in a tight schedule. There is a particular timeframe I have to do things in and that gets suffocating sometimes. Things, like reading or listening to music while commuting, are now a thing of the past. I’m never free in spite of having a very, very helpful partner and that upsets me sometimes.
I love M more than anyone else in this universe. I love being her mother. A little crazy and an extremely paranoid mother. But it’s hard. Juggling all the things that I have to, it sometimes gets difficult holding on to all the things I want to. That’s when I feel a little sad. The fact is no matter what once you decide to become a parent there are some sacrifices which you invariably have to make. You even do it willingly but that can sometimes be a touch frustrating in spite of that.
They say life is not a bed of roses and that’s true of parenting, of being a mother too. It’s not always hugs and kisses. There are some difficult, stressful and selfish moments too.
I hope I haven’t scared you. Have I?
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