I’m Tired But I’m Not Defeated

I’m Tired But I’m Not Defeated | Twin Cities Moms Blog

{Photo credit: Sarah Hudson Photography}

I rush to finish the last project of my workday. I calculate the time in my head, the walk to my car and then the commute. My husband needs to work late. I’ll be able to make it before daycare closes.

My hands hurt. The release of stress by gripping the steering wheel during my commute home becomes apparent to me. I turn up the audio book to absorb the parenting advice and I silently lament about my mistakes in motherhood.

As I drive up to school, I imagine our connection when we reunite. I think about the quality time we are going to share. My words and actions will be soft, calm and thoughtful.

I can do this by myself. I’m not overwhelmed. I’ll be organized and on time.

In retrospect, I think back to that moment and wonder what was the Jenga piece that pulled the whole evening down?

My idyllic night collapses for many reasons but it wasn’t just a Jenga piece pulled out that brought it down. The night’s issues were a domino effect. Leaving work later than expected started a slow collision of forces in my life. I was trying to be too many things at once.

A good worker.

A good wife.

A good mom.

I want to be all of these things but I’ve found it impossible to be all of these roles at the same time. My reality is that balance in motherhood is a lie. As I give to each area in one direction, my performance goes down in another.

I caught myself as I tried to put the milk away in the cupboard.

I rushed them to fill their bellies with dinner. I told them to stop playing and just eat their food.

I asked them no less than three times to put their shoes on.

We went to their activity and once home, we shuffled through our night routine, brushing teeth, jammies and dancing carefully close to bedtime. I snuggled with them in their beds and told each of them I was sorry for a night that was too rushed and I apologized for my behavior. 

I leave their rooms and check my texts. My husband says he’s on his way home. I want to collapse on the bed with my phone.

As I’m picking up the bathroom, I realize in the night’s shuffle that I forgot to eat dinner. I think to myself that maybe I wouldn’t be so stressed if I worked out more. I realize that tonight was the last night to get my final scan for the month at my gym for the health care discount. I think to myself that I can do better.

I barely have anything left at the end of the night. I’ve tried to be a good worker, wife, and mom. And I didn’t give much of anything to myself. This is the messy balance in motherhood. I’m tired but I’m not defeated. I will keep swimming. I know tomorrow will bring new challenges but I’m not too tired to try again in motherhood.

Alice Seuffert
Alice is the creator of Dining with Alice where she shares creative comfort food recipes and conversations about motherhood. She is a television cook known for her easy and creative recipes and appears on Twin Cities Live and has also appeared on the Rachael Ray show. Alice is the author of Freezer Meals for Moms a book filled with freezer-friendly meals. Alice has also been recognized for her writing on body image, marriage and motherhood and has been featured on national parenting web pages including Scary Mommy. Alice works outside the home at a Twin Cities nonprofit organization as an education researcher and advocate at the state legislature. Alice’s favorite and most important role is mom and wife. Connect with her on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram or sign up for her Email Newsletter for all of her recipes and posts about motherhood and Minnesota.

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