I was a school teacher. I was a coach. I was a writer. I was an editorial assistant.
I was good at those jobs.
I worked hard and was successful. I was a good coworker. My bosses always seemed pleased with me. I got good reviews. I received raises.
And now my job is mom.
I feel like I suck at it.
I wrote this post a few times and used other words instead of suck. I used stink or am not good at and they just didn't have the punch that I was feeling inside when I was writing this.
Those I love will tell me this is not true. They will tell me that I am a good mom. Or they will go at it from another angle and tell me that they understand. That they feel the same way.
I appreciate people who say that. I really need to hear it. It does help to feel like we are not alone.
But the truth is, no one is with me everyday except me. No one sees me in the trenches. They see what I allow them to see.
If I am being honest, I think I know, deep down, that this is probably more PMS than actual truth. It's sthe culmination of a very busy week, a move three weeks away, a triathlon race on the horizon, trying to homeschool and eliminate pull-ups, a husband who did way too many 12-hour shifts in one week, the showings of our house for our landlord who wants to sell it after we move out, and a 20 month old that is simply into ev-ery-thing!
But still, right now, at this exact moment, I feel like I am not capable of doing this job well.
My first job fail so to speak.
I waited soooooo long to be a mom. So many years of begging and pleading make you think you'd have a handle on this more than the next guy.
I try so hard. I wake up each morning vowing to do this day better than the day before. I pray and worship and educate myself to be the mom I want to be. But there are four kids. And one me. I am outnumbered and lately, I not only know I am outnumbered, but I feel very outnumbered.
I know there are successes. I see them when Isaac learns to tie his shoes or Hannah masters eating with a spoon or a child successfully wipes their own butt or stays dry during naptime or manages to put their dirty clothes in the laundry basket.
But there are so many moments, interspersed within all the successes, that make me feel I just missed it.
In my mind, I feel like I know that I don't really, completely suck, but these little miss-it moments add up and at the end of the day I can't help feeling like I did a really lousy job.
I lay in bed at night thinking, "I shouldn't have nagged them to pick up their legos. I shouldn't have punished Isaac for that. I shouldn't have tried to do math right after dinner. I should have hugged Hannah instead of getting exasperated with her."
Those types of things.
I want so badly to do motherhood like I did my other jobs. I want to go to work each day and work hard and do the right things and make my boss satisfied and leave knowing I did a good job.
And yet I don't.
Even though the day is filled with so many hugs and snuggles and kisses and silly moments (like Abigail telling me, when my tires hit the bumps on the side of the road that it makes her "bottom tickle"), at the end of the day, I often still think about all the things that didn't go as planned.
As I wrote this post, I tried to come up with a good conclusion. A good way of tying up all these emotions with a neat little bow. Instead, I felt like I just needed to write it without a happy-ever-after ending. I truly believe that because I have opted to make my life so public through my blog, people believe I have some miracle mom magic.
I love this job.
I wouldn't trade it for the world.
My kids are nestled in my heart deeper than I can explain in words.
But I don't feel good at what I am doing. I don't feel good enough to mold four little souls to become successful grown-ups. I don't know if I can homeschool them adequately. I am not sure Hannah will ever stop finding things (like my prescription sunglasses) and destroying them in a matter of 3 seconds flat despite the fact that they were tucked into a bag up on the counter!
(She also emptied the entire bottom part of the dishwasher -- steak knives included -- onto the counter. Oh and I have to put her shoes on .4 seconds before we walk out the door or she talks them off again which she does in the car anyways so what is the point.)
Some days I feel like motherhood has kicked my butt.
And so if you feel that way too today, I say YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
(And if you don't feel like you suck at it, then please keep it to yourself so that I don't start crying even harder than I have been most of today.)
That is all.
Back to my job.
(Which I love.)
(And which I know, deep down inside I am good enough at.)
(Just wishing I was a wee bit better -- mostly on days like today.)