Our worst selves. When you are angry with your kid...

Last Wednesday, when my sister and her family was here, was a terrible day. It had nothing to do with my sister and her family and everything to do with Junia and her very tired Mama.

She was driving me nuts. Everything she did was crazy making! Touching EVERYTHING, fussing about EVERYTHING, needing to move ALL THE TIME. I was going bonkers! There were probably a couple elements that might have ACTUALLY been making it worse.
A- She has molars coming in.
B- We have guests in our house and in our space. She is wondering what the heck is going on.
C- She senses that her Mama is exhausted- and thinks "lets see if I can push this."

I don't know about C.

Lunch was rough. We were out, which is always harder, and she wanted to be everywhere. On the way back she fell asleep. But did not lay down for her nap. I really, seriously, desperately needed a nap. 10 hours in 2 nights just isn't enough for me. I have always been a sleeper.

So she was screaming, playing, pooping, fussing. I was rocking, laying on her floor, leaving, coming, changing diaper. You know the scene.

This went on for 2.5 hours. I felt like a terrible parent. Not because she wasn't sleeping but because I was so angry at her. And because her cries made me feel like I was hurting her. But going in there to soothe those cries just made me more escalated.

Oh how I hate who I am when I am out of control angry.

Finally, my sister went in and rocked her to sleep. It took her 5 minutes.
I took a nap.

So all of this is just the reality of parenthood. Nothing in there isn't the life of about 3 million Mom bloggers. Except do any of them admit how furious they got at there kid? Or how rotten and gross that fury made them feel as a person.

Maybe they don't all get furious. But when I am tired, and stressed, and have guests, its hard. So when Junia wasn't napping, I was contributing with fury. Anger. Rage. She made me feel so unfree. Unfree to be with my sister. To nap like I needed. To keep my promise with my nephew to play a game. I was fuming. I just wanted to shake her, hit her, take her insides out through her nose.

Then someone that evening said to me, "you are a great parent, at least you didn't hit her." Except that seems to also say, "if you hit her you aren't a great parent." I don't want to hit Junia and I am avoiding it as much as I can but it isn't an impossibility. Most parents don't plan on doing such things. And if it happens, I'll think about it, apologize, and do my best to avoid it again, but yikes, to have my good/bad parenting be contingent on one action that feels so close!

I guess my question is this. What is your worst self? (not just as a parent!)

My sister confessed (is this okay Amy) that when she is overbaked on the parenting front she just checks out. Like she turns into Mom robot.

And beyond that...what are your triggers for your worst self?

My first one is lack of sleep. That is huge for me. Which is why having a newborn sucked so bad. I was tired. So that meant I was always angry, and I don't like the feeling of being angry.

And finally, why? Why do you hate that part of you? What does it make you feel?


  1. Oh Rachel, as always, your blog is always so honest. And encouraging because of that honesty!

    I suspect I am with you, my friend. My worst self is an angry self. And tiredness is a huge trigger. As if being emotionally drained is another. If I've been giving emotionally to people, I need to recharge and have some alone time in order to keep sane. I'm a bit worried this could be my Achilles's heel when I'm a mom.

    I'm really hoping that I can learn to say no when I can't give anymore. I think it's totally ok to admit when you can't do for your child...even if they drive you insane. You are a person, too, and making mistakes and taking time for yourself are two of the many ways Junia will come to know and value that.

  2. I just read this after giving myself a timeout. I actually screamed at both of my boys in the kitchen that I needed a timeout and then I stomped out to the front porch, slammed the door and sat on the front porch for 5 minutes .... very close to tears. I need a vacation from being a mom and I'm not getting it until I start work on Monday. Is it horrible that the thing I am looking forward to most about Monday is taking Foster to day care and having him not attached to me for a few minutes?

    BTW - it was totally fine that you wrote that I check out and turn into "robo-mom". I think I am her today.


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