Letting Go.August 30, 2010 at 7:59 am | Posted in Battles (aka: toddlerhood), motherhood, My life | 23 Comments
We did get packed in order to go up to North Conway. O fell asleep in the car, late. We pulled into the driveway about 9:30.
When J opened his door to get out, because we had forgotten to turn on the interior lights, O woke up.
And because it was a new place, he didn’t want to EVER go to sleep.
My child was up until after midnight that night. I did everything I could to get him to relax enough to sleep. I watched TV with him. I left him in the pack and play with the TV ON. (No joke, he watched a high school football game.)
Finally I turned off the TV and left him in the finished basement, alone, calling for me, while I went upstairs and had a beer with the others.
They all were sympathetic. We drank beers and just talked, and not only did I feel like noone was judging me for leaving my toddler crying; I actually forgot that he was crying because it was so nice to catch up with our friends.
He stopped crying within 15 minutes of me being upstairs. And was fast asleep by midnight.
We were up until 2 that night, and by then I had given up on the idea that I was going to run 10 miles first thing in the morning.
It was really nice.
So the next morning we all slept in. Then had breakfast. Then decided to take a hike.
Which we were SO unprepared for. Our backpack kid carrier was in the garage, I think. My ergo was with my SIL. J and I didn’t have any hiking shoes – just sneakers.
But we decided to see how O did on his own, and we’d carry him in our arms if he got tired.
My kid hiked ALL THE WAY IN. At LEAST a half mile. On his own. He was chasing our friends’ dog, but he was also really interested in the hike. It was amazing, and awesome, because up until now our attempts at hiking have been met with toddler resistance. This time he just went.
Even our friends told us that they were sort of amazed at how well he did. How FAST he went. Because the other two youngest kids, three and six months older than O, didn’t walk at all.
And then we headed back, and when he and J took a nap, I went for a run. I managed only FOUR miles. I was supposed to do 10. I will say that, hands down, that was the hardest four miles I’ve ever run. In the sun, dehydrated, tired from only 6 hours of sleep, during the time where *I* really needed a nap. It was awful. Every moment of it.
And at that moment that was the hardest, when I decided to just turn around and head back to my car, I just decided to let it all go.
I put so much fucking pressure on myself.
To be a better person, a better friend, a better parent. To manage this life I’ve got; to make sure the dishes are done, the house is clean, O is fed and bathed and happy. To run a half marathon in under 2 hours. To please my boss and do an amazing job at work.
I apparently want to be a SuperMom. And SuperFriend. And SuperWife. And SuperWorker. And SuperRunner. All at once.
And so when things fall apart like they did at the end of last week, it made me feel like I was failing at EVERYTHING. And I couldn’t handle it.
So I let it go. And for the rest of the weekend, I just rolled with the punches. O stayed up the next night until 9pm, and I wasn’t nervous or upset about it at all. He barely ate until our friend K made some macaroni and cheese, and he downed two full bowls of it. We went to StoryLand a little too late Sunday morning, when he was getting tired. When he completely freaked the fuck out on his favorite ride, we just got our hands stamped, went back to the house, and let him take a nap. And when he woke up, we went back. And he loved his favorite ride so much we went on it THREE times in a row.
And I didn’t run on Sunday.
So last night on the way home, J and I actually were surprised to realize that we were RELAXED.
We had been totally unprepared for the hike. We hadn’t slept more than 6 hours each night. I totally punted my long run AND my recovery run. But all in all, it was a GREAT time.
And here I sit, at 8am on Monday morning, with daycare closed and my son still asleep. And I keep thinking that life is pretty damn good.
If I just get rid of all the EXPECTATIONS of myself.
I’m doing the best I can.
That’s got to be good enough.