Monday, July 12, 2010

Motherhood Stress Part One

So (confession) I got this book from my local LLL library... a year ago. Every time I've left for meeting I had the kids all loaded up and we'd be a block from the house and I'd go "Ooh the book!! Shoot, I am already running late. I'll remember next month!" I missed a few meetings during cold and flu season, or the car was in the shop.
A year later and it's getting ridiculous, I need to return it. This morning I remembered that I had it and determined this is the last month I will have the book in my house. I dug it out of the cupboard it's been sitting in for over 9mos. And went to put it in the van so that I CAN NOT forget! And I started thinking...
I mentioned in a quick post a few days ago about how burnt out I am. The feeling hasn't changed. Amity is learning to walk, and with that has massive separation anxiety. I mean above and beyond what it was before. I remember this was THE most intense time with Riley in her first year (though it was earlier because she was already walking full time at this point). Once she figured out the walking thing she calmed down a lot and things evened out. I am praying (erm begging.) that this happens for Amity. 90% of the time I feel like I'm coping okay. But there are some absolute insane hours of the day that I feel like I'm going to snap.
Clingy toddler. Clingy baby. Always feeling like I'm behind and never getting anywhere.
When I pulled out this book this morning I decided I needed to give it a re-read.
In the first few pages she tells a story of how she was hanging out with another Mom-friend who was told by her doctor that she was too stressed (her hair was falling out). She said some thing like, "I don't know why I'm stressed, it's not like I work, I'm just a Mom."
The author comes around to explain how she was preparing a lecture (she had 5 kids and gave night lectures/taught at a local college 2 evenings a week) entitled "Playing with Kids All Day': Job Stress in Early Childhood Education."
Her lecture notes:
  • an excess of novelty and uncertainty
  • lack of control
  • high expectations
  • no clear guidelines or measure of success
  • frustrations
  • low status and low pay
  • poor accountability
  • ideals versus reality

She goes through the book discussing each of these issues and other things like ...The causes and effects of motherhood stress. Ways to find balance and take care of yourself and relieve some of that stress...What Fathers can do to relieve motherhood stress.

I'm going to read this again and post a full review...Or at least a few posts on the subject. It's some thing I really want to think about. I definitely need some tools for surviving (and maybe even possibly finding more joy in???) the next few years.

I hope it gets easier. I'm hoping I can find a better balance for where I'm at right now. Or maybe I just need a new perspective? But I am seriously going to have hair issues too if some thing doesn't change.

I promise local LLL, I will return this book in August...But before then I'm diving in to it again.

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