I haven’t been able to regularly blog for the past couple weeks due some changes in scheduling. But, now that things have started to settle in I’m hoping to get back into the swing of things. As I sat down to write this, I realized how the past couple weeks have been a blur. The days have been long and gray, and sometimes I’ve felt immense loneliness, even though I have a toddler running all over the house and keeping me busy.
But, this is a different kind of loneliness. Isolation that is only experienced when you’re a parent. I could not have imagined that some of my days would be like this. When I decided to leave my job to be a stay-at-home mom your focus is exclusively on how you are going to be able to be there with your child all the time. You’re excited because you won’t miss out on the little milestones. So, obviously everything is going to be rainbows and butterflies; nothing but joy and happiness. Not exactly.
The one thing I miss the most about my job is the constant social interaction with adults. Being able to talk to your peers is a type of sustenance that keeps the day going. But, days like today where it’s gray and raining, you can’t take your child out, and everyone apparently has the flu wear on you. You begin to feel isolated, lonely, and a type of exhaustion that only accompanies this type of situation. When my husband comes home, I feel like a giddy child. An adult in the flesh that I can talk to! It’s hard for him because I know he’s exhausted for other reasons. He worked all day, and, unlike me, he experienced constant social interaction dealing with staff and patients. I know sometimes he really wants some peace and quiet. And I want just the opposite.
That’s a trade off you don’t expect when you are with your kid all day. You aren’t alone, but there will be days, maybe even weeks, when you feel alone. I’ve attempted to force myself to get out. Even during the cold, winter days. But, it’s hard. There are so many other things you worry about for your child especially when illness is rampant that you have to sacrifice some mental sanity to keep your child healthy. I can handle the isolation over dealing with a miserable toddler battling a fever. But the sacrifices you make doesn’t make the days any easier.
I know this moment in time is only a blip. My Mom told me one day you will wake up and wonder where the time went. Your baby will be having a baby, and you won’t remember all those gray days you endured as your child gleefully bounced to the rhythm of life completely unaware. If you are a mom reading this and you are experiencing this momentarily lonely existence, I hope you feel some sense of comradeship to know other moms are out there are standing with you in isolated solidarity.
I feel bad looking forward to the day I don’t feel this way because that also means my daughter will be older, precious moments during the gray have passed, and perhaps I might actually be yearning for these very gray days where it was just me and her. That’s the bittersweet dilemma of parenthood: nothing lasts for very long and sometimes the things you loath might become the nostalgic moments you dream to revisit.