the mommy disconnect

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it's funny but whenever we have a new baby in the house i typically place myself on what i call "house arrest" for the first few months. not only is it important to the bonding process twixt mommy, family and babes, it's practical because it's a real challenge to get all the wee ones ready for outings. but for some reason, this time around things are a little different. i'm feeling a disconnect from the outside world, even friends, and it's not all that pleasant. of course, sacrifice never is.

i want to chalk it up to feeling a tad overwhelmed and most certainly sleep deprived, but i'm not sure that it's that simple. maybe having twins makes the difference? i don't know. but for the first time ever, i'm feeling really disconnected. disconnected, not withdrawn. therein lies the rub, as they say. in the past (if memory serves) it's always been a deliberate withdrawal to enjoy the babes, learn a new routine. but now, now it's different, almost funky. don't get me wrong, i wouldn't change a thing about every precious moment spent with the wee ones (except perhaps the three AM feeding), but now i'm learning the true meaning of the phrase "there just aren't enough hours in the day."

i guess i've been spoiled in the past because things seemed easier to prioritize and manage -- or! perhaps i just remember them that way. maybe i've forgotten the struggle like we "forget" the pains of birth. maybe i've been down this road before but time has blurred the map. i know i do more than i should on some days, but not enough on others. where is the balance? how to make time for duties, family and friends so that i don't feel so disconnected is the challenge. and no matter how well i prioritize, there will always be dirty laundry and dishes. fie! damnable chores!

it's my mother's fault. no, not really but who else gets the blame? it's going to be one mother or another, don't you know. actually my mother does see things in, well i don't know what you'd call it but it conjures up hefty feelings of guilt. for example, if i'm taking care of one baby the other is being deprived. if i'm loving on one child, another is being ignored. change this one's diaper, the other somehow suffers. sorry, i just don't think that way. then again, here lately, her voice in the back of my head keeps gnawing, "what about them? him? her? fill-in-the-blank?" if i'm writing this blog, someone somewhere is being ignored. if i take a shower, it's inevitable that someone needs me to get gum out of her hair. if i lock myself in the bathroom to talk to friend, someone needs me to get a sandwich out of the VCR or to look up the twin's social security numbers. oh, let's face it, being a wife and mother means that someone somewhere is always going to need something from you. that's why it's a vocation, not a vacation. at least, that's what i keep telling myself. along with my latest mantra, this too shall pass.

why am i afraid to sit down and read a few blogs, call a friend, sit down and watch the amazing race? why is it that any little thing i do outside of duty ends up being a declaration? i will call her today if it's the last thing i do! i am going to sit down and read ten pages of this book! i will take this nasty toenail polish off this week!

i guess the bottom line is that i just want to be able to shave my legs without feeling guilty.


Oh, Micki! Big, big cyber-hug coming your way!!

Honestly, one baby takes so much attention, the fact that are pouring yourself out for two is reason enough for all these feelings. That three a.m. feeding has got to be a killer, especially if you have to get up. (I'm assuming you are nursing simultaneously instead of consecutively? I alway snoozed through the middle-of the night feedings with my babies in the side-lying position -- helped a ton with sleep deprivation. I don't guess that would work with twins if they both wake up at the same time. Maybe when they are bigger, one can nurse side-lying and the other can sit up and lean over his brother. We can call it the "double decker" positoin...are you laughing yet????)

I wish I could come help.

Say, that's an idea. Call that friend you're wanting to speak with and ask her to come over. Chat while you change diapers or nurse or whatever. Then give HER a little bonding time with the babies while you shave your legs and go after that toenail polish. You'll only be away from the twins for 15 minutes or so, and they most certainly will NOT be ignored and somebody else can keep the older kids from storing sandwiches in the VCR.

I hear you! And my daughter is a "singleton," and eight months old. I even feel guilty about things beyond basic household "stuff," such as projects I'm not working on. And I think that no matter how self-sufficient and well-adjusted your other children are, "crisis" moments always seem to occur when we are least able to respond--at least that's how it goes in my house!

In my experience having newborns (I have seven children, but they all came one at a time), you sound extremely sleep deprived. Whenever I have had that "disconnected" feeling, it has been that I was dangerously low on sleep. You may really have to think radically in order to get some more sleep, like outside help, or asking a friend or relative to tend to things for a short time a few times a week. Just for a while. It doesn't take much extra sleep to feel better, but it is truly needed. I'll ask Our Lord to help you find a way. Blessings.

Lots of rest, an uniterrupted 10 hours, is what solved this problem for Stitchwitch after our first came along. I sent her to bed and took care of him. She's experienced that feeling a few times since, but never related to caring for him. With baby no 2 on the way, I'm gearing up to send her to bed a lot more frequently.

Flambeaux! Baby #2! Yee haw! It's the first I've heard (I wasn't at 10:30 mass last week.) Give your lovely wife my heartiest congrats and a big hug!!!! And I'm off to find yarn for yet another baby blanket! (As an avid crocheter, it is such a blessing to be in a Catholic parish with lots of babies!)

It's still not in the bulletin or announcements, MamaT, so you didn't miss anything.

We've been keeping it a bit quiet, but she's meeting with her OB next week, I think, so we probably ought to start asking for prayers. I think we're near the end of the first trimester, if my math is correct.

Oh, and we put on offer on one of the houses for sale across from the church. By the grace of God, we'll move in come late September.



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This page contains a single entry by smockmomma published on August 8, 2005 11:33 AM.

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