As a kid, I remember looking at my parents and thinking they were superhuman, even indestructible. No matter what crazy antics my three siblings and I threw their way, the hurricane-like aftermath we left behind us, or how loudly we fought at the dinner table, our parents remained… our parents.
Day in and day out they listened, reasoned, reminded and disciplined us. They made consequences and followed through on them. They waited out our tantrums and intervened when we fought. They never let on how exhausting parenting is!
Now, years on and a parent myself I realise that, to children, parents look like these magical superheroes who are always ‘on’, always ready to parent, never flagging, never wanting ‘out’.
But sometimes – often – the brave superhero exterior is hiding an exhausted human clinging to sanity by a very thin thread.
Sums up their Sunday feels right now 😚#Kendyl #Kaden #Kennedy #Kelsey
This mum admitted something we’ve all thought, but never said out loud
It took guts when American mother of four, Regan Long, conceded that she had had enough. Regan wrote about it on her Facebook page, The Real Deal of Parenting, a post which has since received hundreds of likes and shares.
“Today I wanted to ‘tap out’ of motherhood for a bit,” Regan said. “I’m ashamed to admit that out loud as it sounds pretty terrible, but I’ll be honest, it’s the truth. Today I felt like, ‘I don’t have this anymore. I’m not built for this. I can’t do this…I’m DONE.'”
Today I wanted to "tap out" of motherhood for a bit.I'm ashamed to admit that out loud as it sounds pretty terrible,…
“I’m done with cleaning messes to just be recreated. I’m done with putting clothes away for them to be strewn about minutes later,” Regan laments. “I’m done with feeling like a hamster on a wheel that is ready to break.
“I’m not even going to touch on the dishes or laundry because even me thinking about it, I feel like it’s such a broken record…”
And to that, Regan, we say ‘Amen’!
Thank you for saying what so many of us fear being judged for. Thank you for normalising this.
I mean, it’s kind of amazing, isn’t it, that parents keep getting up to face the world, day after day? (The seconds we spend silently screaming into the pillow when we hear the little footsteps in the hall, tell us just how much of a miracle it is!)
The thing is, every parent has wanted to call it quits, even just for a day
All parents have moments where we want to throw in the towel and be a childless, irresponsible 20-year-old: flippant, free and answerable to no one.
No one told me that the role of parent would also come with a huge ‘safety first’ badge, and sometimes I want to throw safety out the window and do something SCARY-fun. Something carefree and juvenile. Something for ME.
“I’m done with talking until I’m blue in the face, and no one listening,” says Regan. “I’m done stepping over the same jacket or toy or shoe that no matter how many times I wait or ask someone to pick it up, it still remains there or gets shuffled around to a different spot that it doesn’t belong in.”
We’ve all been there
There are times when we want to pack it all up, rent a convertible and drive into the sunset.
Because parenting is a hard, mundane and largely thankless, job. Our kids take us for granted, which is wonderful in the sense that they know we’ll always be there for them, but also means they treat us like s**t a lot of the time.
Thankfully, the good outweighs the bad
But as quickly as the thought enters our heads, it escapes again. Because for every annoying, chaotic, ‘I can’t do this’ moment we feel as parents, there are a hundred sweet moments.
Arms flung wide for spontaneous hugs, whispered ‘I love yous’ and chubby, dirt streaked faces reaching up to be kissed.
There are moments when we gaze at our (finally) sleeping children and wonder how the hell we got so lucky?
Parents, remember why you are a superhero to your kids
Every moment that you’re fighting to stay calm, to keep going, to pull it together, you’re giving your kids the freedom to be kids… lose the plot, have meltdowns in the shopping aisle and tantrums at the dinner table.
They can express the hugeness of their emotions with you because they feel safe. You created that safe place. And for that alone, you are AWESOME!
Do you know a parent who needs to read this?