Motherhood. It has added many layers to who I was pre-kids. I have become stronger, more sensitive, intuitive, brave, resilient and resourceful. Although it has added some great qualities to my resume of character, I wouldn’t say that it has all been positive.
Relationships in my life have taken a hit. I try. But reality is, I can’t keep up. My inner circle is my four kids and my husband, and even at times my husband was shoved out. I have worked hard at stealing a little more time each day for him, but then I am at capacity.
The rest of the people in my world either get it, or they don’t. I don’t blame them. I am, at times, a crappy friend.
I go dark.
One week you can text me and I will reply within seconds, being able to keep up a back and forth conversation that will put a smile on my face, remembering how much I miss conversing with another adult.
Other weeks you can text me and I will read half of it, before a piercing cry breaks the silence from the other room and I have to drop my phone and run. That text often ends up in the graveyard of my relationships.
I’m wiping noses, making meals and then remaking them when crusts aren’t wanted and peas are touching the gravy. I’m singing songs and laying beside kids as they fall asleep. I am listening to how days at school went and breaking up fights. I am making it rain in the bath and brushing dirt off of knees outside. I am holding and kissing softly.
It won’t always be like this, at least I don’t think it will. But I do know that when the dust settles, the diapers are long gone and all of my kids are more independent, I will look around and see those few people who stuck around.
Some of you… well you are family, so you are kind of obligated to stay, which, to be honest, I might rely on too much. I need to change that.
Others stuck around because this is their life too. They are relieved to know that they aren’t the only one that by the end of the day, they can barely remember large portions of it. They were so many people and they wore so many hats that they can’t even remember who they really are anymore.
For now, I hope that our rare dinners out without kids can do. Because although few and far between, they reset me. They remind me who I was and still am. They remind me what it feels like to laugh and that I am one of many moms who are constantly trying to find the elusive balance.
So, maybe my pool of friends has shrunk significantly since becoming a mother. But I am still here.
I crave our relationship just as much, and will continue to make plans and reschedule when my kid is sick.
I am in it right now. In the trenches. Don’t give up on me. Please keep throwing that rope down every once and a while, I will keep trying to grab it.
In a couple years when I have re-emerged, and when you are in it, I promise, I will throw that rope to you again and again, even if you occasionally go dark too.
I’m still here, please wait for me.