Monday, July 22, 2013

Making insecurity into an art

The internet can be a little rough if you are sensitive.  I posted that I am struggling with depression last month and while I am feeling about 74.5% better I know better than to go poking around on the internet.  

For the past month I haven't laid eyes on Pinterest.  I have not kept up with my blogroll and I haven't been internet shopping.  And besides adding back the SSRI I know that the internet diet is making me happier. 

About a year ago one of my friends was suffering from depression over not being good enough. She would find herself comparing herself to all of the blogs she was reading (including mine). I was shocked.  I was like-- hey girl, you know I'm just like you.  I hide candy from my kid, my house is a mess and I am not sure when I washed my hair last.  But I don't really post all of that (all the time).  I post what I am generally happy about in life, and the one shot (with a soft focus) that is actually pretty flattering of me and my surroundings. 

So she quit. She quit reading blogs. She already didn't do Facebook and she isn't on Pinterest.  Epic win. 

I wasn't too addicted to Pinterest in the first place, let's face it I haven't really been cooking for about 2.5 years (yes that's the exact age of my child) and those fitness posts make me want to vomit (which isn't a healthy way to lose weight) I married an actor, and I work for a non-profit = dream home with a clawfoot bathtub, window seat and 4.5 bathrooms, ain't happening. 

And on Facebook it's been pretty easy to hide, "unfriend" and avoid people that make me angry, eye roll a little too often, or feel unworthy.  

BUT the occasional news story or testimonial shows up on my blogroll or news feed and it sends me into a place where it's hard for me to be.  

In my life, I feel the most inadequate about my mothering and my view on mothering. I feel this way because I don't (nor have I ever) want to stay home with my child.  

Before I ever had a child, I knew that I didn't want to stay home.  But before I had a child I didn't know that I would feel like I had just admitted I was a Nazi sympathizer when I said that. Before I had a child I didn't realize how many articles are posted online (what seems like daily) about this "important choice"  

I read a lot of blogs by stay at home moms and wanna-be stay at home moms and love what they have to say.  BUT when they happen to post about why they stay home or even how to stay at home, I can recognize the merit in their words but it makes me want to run shrieking into a dark closet and wonder what's wrong with me. 

I don't know why I let it affect me the way I do.  Of course some people are all judgy and high and mighty about how awesome they are for staying home, but the majority of people aren't like this.  It isn't the judgy posts that make me re-examine my mothering motives, it's just the everyday casual ones.  

It makes me think, "why isn't this ever on my mind?"  On Mondays I always miss Sloane.  But I am also deliciously happy to return to being needed by others, to being creative and in charge.  It doesn't have anything to do with has to do with how I am the best me (and thus best mom) I can be. 


And you know what sucks.  There aren't nine million articles and testimonials and things calling for men to sacrifice and "stay home with their baby" and give them the best caretaker flipping nauseum.

 It's not that "I don't know why we can't all just get along." It's that there isn't this "pressure" on men to feel like if they don't want to or don't stay home they are any less of an awesome parent.  

Beyond this, I know how I would be if I stayed home.  And frankly, it's frightening.  It's like facing one million Sundays in a row. 

It would be me who looked like this.

So I will fight the quiet riot in my heart, work on accepting myself and in the meantime, don't look for me online.  I am probably off playing with my kiddo in the time I have to spend with her before it's off to work.

title courtesy of my current anthem by ms. difranco: present/infant


Tami said...

What's that quote...there are a thousand ways to be a great mother but a million to be a good one

Anna got invited to go to summer school because she is a little behind in school and I begged the school to let will go because I didn't want to have to entertain will for the time she was at I have 3 hours 3x a week to myself

I have some of the same feelings you do & because we acknowledged our down falls I think it does make us better parents

Ashley H said...

I totally know what you mean about how you can get sucked into comparing your life to others. I don't do it too much because I know everyone has their battles but sometimes I do get sucked into it. Facebook can be horrible. Sometimes I want to quit it.

People often say to me they wish they could be single (not married) with no kids & their own apartment & blahblahblah. From my point of view, I am (soon to be) 29, with no husband, no kids, no house. I am basically a dried up old maid.


The grass is always greener on the other side.

Sarah said...

For some women, staying at home makes them feel like a better mother; for others, having a job, making a difference outside of their family, being creative, etc, makes them feel like a better mother.

You have to meet your needs first before you can meet anyone else's.