For the first time in nearly three years, I wished myself away from my children.
I wished not just in my head but out loud that I had a job outside of the home, a job that took me away from them so I wouldn't have to talk over them all day, reprimand them, to yell at them, my commands falling on deaf toddler ears.
Some days I feel like a broken record. "Don't sit on the table. Don't jump on the couch. Don't pull the baby's leg. Don't drag the baby across the floor. Don't throw your trucks. Stop taking his toys. Please share your things. Help me clean up. Just sit down. SIT STILL FOR A MINUTE. NO! NO! NO!"
Most days are good days. Great days, even. But some moments are just bad enough that they almost make you forget the great days.
It was seconds after the toddler head-butted the baby down the single step down in the kitchen that I lost my shit. He was fine, of course, shaken up no doubt, but I lost it so bad by the time I was done yelling at the toddler, with tears streaming down his face, he was asking for his daddy.
With tears streaming down my face, I told him I know exactly how that feels.
It was not my finest mothering moment. In fact, it's one among many that I'm not particularly proud of but this shit is hard. Mothering is no joke. It's not playing house. It's not all dandelions and pancakes, pinterest projects and perfect pictures.
It's a text message to your husband at 5:30pm asking him to come home because you can't, not for another minute, be in the same house as your kids. Because walking out on them, as crasy as it sounds, actually seems like a really good idea at the moment.
It's a baby gate on the toddler's bedroom door and quiet time for the baby in his crib as you sit in the cold, quiet basement, monitors turned off so that you can't hear the constant calls, "Mom! Mommy? Momma!" Ashamed for how you reacted, racking your brain for other ways in which you could have handled the situation.
I've never wished myself away from my kids and almost as quickly as I wished that wish, I regretted it. But I'm only human. I only have so much patience. There is no manual to mothering. I don't know about your kids but mine certainly didn't come with a handbook, let alone a loose set of "guidelines" or shit, helpful tips even.
I'm so grateful for a husband who, without hearing the frustration or the sadness and regret in my voice, knew immediately that he had to come home. Who walked through the door after a crazy day at work and said, "go."
He also said, "boys, take it easy on your mama or you're going to leave me with a ragged, empty shell of a woman I used to know," but that's neither here nor there.
I'm writing this because I know I can't be the only know who feels like this sometimes and it's reassuring to know I'm not the only one who maybe once (or twice) wished themselves away from their kids only to find themselves curled up on the edge of their sleeping toddler's bed a mere three hours later, tears streaming down their face as they apologized to their sleeping toddler, hoping that when he wakes he won't remember Scary Mommy, but rather the mommy who blew bubbles and painted pictures and splashed around in the backyard kiddie pool that hot Wednesday morning.
Mothering isn't easy but I find peace knowing that tomorrow is a new day. I don't know about you but I could sure use more grace, please.