Mama in the City

A blog about raising my family in downtown Vancouver

I'm Not Going To Lie To You

I am not a natural Superwoman. I would rather get a good nights sleep (that starts at 9 PM these days) than stay up cleaning or making the perfect batch of muffins. I happen to know a Super Women who finds the energy to decorate their home in an appropriate manner for each changing Season and who stays up till midnight working on fun crafts. The thing is, I just don't have it in me to even try to be this person.

I don't know if I ever had it in me, but it seems that these days I am struggling with working full time and growing a baby and all the rest of life. The idea of going 'all out' no longer is even an option for me. I definitely don't have an infinite amount of energy to go go go and I really have to set my priorities for my down time.

Unfortunately, my lack of Superwoman abilities means that I don't get to see my friends nearly as much as I would love to. I don't make play dates for Ben on my days off like we used to. There are less outings and adventures overall and I am trying to be okay with that. Some days I feel like I am truly just moving through the motions of working, playing with my boy, cleaning the bathrooms, buying milk, etc etc etc.

Digging for worms can be an adventure for a tired mama.

The problem is: I feel guilty about about saying no and doing less. I feel like I should somehow be able to suck it up and do IT ALL. I should be able to make fabulous dinners on a regular basis and take my boy out on adventures and never ever complain about being tired! Oh what a concept to never complain about feeling tired these days.

I wish that my Superwoman senses would take over and I could do it all...or at least more. In the mean time, I will be dreaming of what packaged dinner I can fool my family with and counting down till my 9 PM bedtime.

PS. I'd like to apologize to my coworkers for my constant remarks of how tired I am. 12+ hours of hearing me talking about it can't be that fun!


Ashley said...

I wrote an article for Mamapedia a few years back talking about being a "Supermom", or maybe the myth of being a Supermom.  It's all relative, we bring to the table, to our families exactly what they need, because what Ben needs is YOU, and what your husband needs is YOU!  It doesn't matter if it's a 5 star dinner or take order #5 from the Chinese Food restaurant, their tummies are full.  It makes no difference if it's a million play dates or a cuddle on the couch because love is what makes him feel special and when you're pregnant you're allowed to be tired, you're expected to be tired (never mind the fact that you work 12 HOUR SHIFTS!!!!) and it's acceptable to complain.

And the big secret, the really, really big secret behind every Supermom is this - her cape's not real!  It's an old tablecloth she found at Value Village, the tights have spanx underneith and when it all comes off - she's just as tired as the rest of us.

Hope tomorrow feels a little less exhausting!

September 26, 2011 at 7:12 PM  
Tarable said...

I used to feel guilty about not being able to do all the stuff I used to do before #2 came along (in utero and out), but then I became too busy to feel guilty and now I just accept things as they are. 

You are totally normal by my standards. Those supermomwoman types are a rare breed these days - thank god because they make the rest of us look bad.

September 26, 2011 at 8:00 PM  
Lisa S. said...

Growing a baby and working full time and all that other stuff is hard work.  I remember when I was pregnant with Jack, once I got Sarah to bed, I would lay on the couch most of the night.  I don't remember when or how the house got cleaned.  Don't feel guilty.  Take care of yourself.

September 26, 2011 at 8:17 PM  
kristin said...

Oh Andrea!  I can almost feel the emotion seeping through this post.  First off, (((( hug )))) to you and secondly, like any experience in baby growing and parenting, "this too shall pass".  Breathe it in.  
I think we are are all Supermoms in some way or another, sometimes we wear our capes loudly, sometimes they are at the dry cleaners (where they forget to get picked up for days, weeks, even months at a time).  Your cape will come back again, maybe with different super powers, but I am sure that when you wear it on your back, your boy and baby will think that you are an amazing Supa-Mama!!  Be kind to yourself, your body and your baby and know that we are all cheering for you!  P.S.  The dinner making superwoman cape is highly over rated these days anyway.  Anything that I have made lately has been met with faces of disgust.  I'm thinking that any frozen or packaged dinner might be the way to go these days!   ; )      

September 26, 2011 at 8:20 PM  
Sarah M. said...

Andrea, know this:  You are your own Supermom.  You take excellent care of Ben, you are pregnant, you write this amazing blog AND you work as a full time nurse.  To me that is deserving of Supermom status.  So you don't make fiddly little crafts till all hours (which usually don't have much of a purpose and get thrown away) or always have fresh baking. The most decorated my house is for Fall comes from a leaf cutout that Eric created at his weekly playgroup!  It takes me thinking about baking for 2 weeks before I actually get around to doing it. Food is food and you have provided for your family no matter what dinner is or where it comes from.
As for doing things for and with Ben, I think parents often forget that children don't care about extravagance.  They are the simplest creatures that get excited over the picture you draw for them, a special treat or even digging for worms. Sometimes even going to a new park or a new coffee shop is enough to make them happy.  Don't feel like you have to keep up with what other moms do.  It's true those moms who seem to do it all are rare and will one day run out of gas.

You are doing a great job of listening to your body,  when you are pregnant you are tired, simple fact.  And when you are tired it's ok not to push it.  Let your household a couple of "lazy" days and then try and sneak in at least 1 day of adventure, but keep it simple.  

Big hugs to you, hope your spirits brighten with all the support you have. 

September 28, 2011 at 11:25 AM  

Um, well for one, you're pregnant. I've never been so physically tired as I was when I was pregnant. So right there, you have a pass. But even without that, the thing is not everyone has ability to do all things. As a single person I was fine with that, as a mom I feel guilty. However on my good days I realize that it's okay to be who we are and manage what we can. Ben is still happy digging in the dirt so that's all good. :)

September 30, 2011 at 4:29 PM  

Thanks Marilyn, I can feel the love! I did do a lot more 'extras' when I was single. That is a great point. Sort of was hoping to keep it up as my life kept changing. I am figuring it out that it might not be possible.

October 1, 2011 at 9:18 PM  

What a sweet message Sarah. Thank you! Ben is just fine with not doing anything big. It's the days when I want to laze on the couch and he pulls my hand and says, 'let's go outside mama!' that start to break my heart. Overall, the boy is happy and will be in a for a big shock when baby #2 comes along. 

October 1, 2011 at 9:19 PM  

Thanks for being a true supporter of women! I'm so tired of hearing, 'your life is about to change forever!' from other moms with more than 1 child.  Your perceptions and support are fantastic :)

October 1, 2011 at 9:20 PM  

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