It was a combination of things: my husband had to work late a few nights and I hate being a single parent -- I'm just not talented at taking care of two kids by myself. Secondly, I've recently learned that Baby O isn't growing enough so I'm trying to increase my milk supply. And lastly, I'm trying to get back to running, but trying to fit that in around everything that is motherhood has been quite the challenge for me.
By the end of the week, I was a hot mess and in a bad mood. I went to bed early Friday night, completely distraught and unhappy. I hadn't been in such a funk in a long, long, time. My husband was worried that I was having postpartum blues or depression and asked if there was anything he could do.
I used the weekend to try and turn things around. I'm a little afraid of the week ahead and a relapse of the motherhood blues. My husband and I had several chats over the weekend as he did everything he could to help me pull out of this feeling of being overwhelmed by motherhood.
Here are some of the things I did this weekend to feel better and get back into a positive state of mind:
Give myself permission to sulk
My husband knows better than to say "Cheer up!" when I am in a bad mood. I accepted that I was not feeling great and allowed myself to feel down and contemplate why I was feeling down.
Talk About It
After an hour of sulking, I was ready to talk about my bad mood. Thankfully, my husband is a great listener. We didn't talk about solutions; we simply talked about why I was feeling so overwhelmed this past week. The discussion helped me sort things out.
Talk About it (Again)
Fortunately, I had a hair appointment scheduled for Saturday morning. My hairdresser is a mother, too, and she was a great sounding board for my woes. Although I had had a great discussion with my husband, it was really great to talk to another woman -- another mother -- about how I was feeling. I left with a new hairstyle and a brighter outlook on tackling all that is nagging me right now.
Identify the Problem
Perhaps it's just my personality, but when I have a problem, I want to solve it. The first step was figuring out what the problem was, and in talking to my husband and my hairdresser, I realized that I was incredibly stressed about the fact that Baby O isn't growing enough and that it might be related to my inability to produce enough milk. Once I figured out that that was the biggest issue, I put together a plan to try and work on my milk supply, but I also accepted that solutions were not going to come around overnight.
Take it Easy
My husband did everything he could to ensure that I relaxed as much as possible over the weekend. We went out for brunch, ordered in takeout one night, and he cooked another night. We put a hold on household chores and laundry. We just hung out as a family.
Make a Plan
Once I was able to figure out what was my biggest issue (out of all the issues I'm dealing with), I decided to focus on the breastfeeding first. As for the two other issues...being a single parent: my husband is working on adjusting his work schedule and we're looking into getting a mother's helper for nights when I'm alone. Getting back to running: my husband is going to support me in my efforts to get to bed early so that I can get up early and fit 3-4 morning runs in whenever possible.
After all of the above, I'm feeling a little less overwhelmed by motherhood but I know that it will take time before I'm feeling in control again. I'm going to take each day as it comes and remember that each morning means a new start. I feel lucky that my husband understands how defeated I can get sometimes and when I do feel defeated, he is ready to jump in and help whenever needed.
Do you ever feel overwhelmed by work / relationships / life in general? What do you do to try to get life back in balance?