I remember when I had my first baby, I want to spend every second with her. I cried my eyes out for days and hours when I sent her to daycare for the first time. I actually hated everyone at work. I even wore her teething necklace to work. I am very fortunate enough to have summers off so I get to spend them with my kids. But fast forward to 2 kids later and I am sending my kids to daycare all summer long while I sit out at the pool, day drink and read 4 books. At first I felt so guilty. I had people texting me asking me if I was so excited that I got to spend the summer with both my kids. Q the guilt one more time. But as a working mom and working with kids all time, I had to understand that I’m allowed to tap out. I spent the summer with my first baby- when she was born, naturally and because she’s a June baby. She actually came the last day of school. Talk about luck. And then the year after I spent the summer with her because it was one baby and it felt manageable. Don’t get me wrong, there were days I just wanted to throw the towel in. Moms are allowed to get burnt out. We act like we never get burned out or that that we’re not allowed to be but in reality we totally are. Then my second was born and oh my lanta- trying to balance an almost toddler and a newborn was as hard as I imagined. Double diapers, negative sleep, extra temper tantrums, jealousy, and feeling lonely even though I was totally opposite of being alone. I’m not sure what’s easier- twins or an almost toddler and a newborn. God bless America, Hudson was the easiest baby and slept straight from the womb. Jules warmed up and understood her new role as a sister.
It was torture for me to leave her to go have another baby- any mama understands it’s like cheating on your baby. But my heart exploded and that’s when I truly knew what love meant. But I needed to tap out here and there. I needed the summer to recharge. I needed to send both my kids to daycare because mommy needs that long to recharge. It’s so easy for our batteries to drain throughout the year and I am soooo blessed that I have this opportunity. It’s bittersweet though because it’s the last summer of me. I even feel that tug of guilt in my heart and mind as I type that. Summer of me?!?! Who says that??
Me. Burnt out, teaching, putting out fires, feeling guilty because I miss my first born, feeling guilty because both kids want 100% of my attention, feeling jealous that my husband goes away and I don’t, feeling overworked because I’m trying to jam 10,000 things in 24 hours, feeling exhausted because I give give give all day and night…me. And damnit if I want to send my kids to daycare all summer long while I run, read, and lay out, then I will. I know I don’t need to explain, but I already have days planned for just Jules and I and just Hudson and I. And I’ll tell you- and those mom with 2 that are close in age- it’s so hard to manage time with both kids. One wants to paint, the other wants boob. Both want to cuddle but they can’t get close enough with both kids on me. They fight over mama and it rips me apart. But on the other side, they adore each other. They can’t be without each other. Some days, Jules begs for girls days and when we plan them, she always asks where Hudson is. I really am the luckiest mama. And I’ve learned that feeling guilty just makes you feel more stressed and adds to the weight we all already have on our shoulders. Time to let it go. We are their anchors- and most of the time we are our husbands anchors whether they realize it or not. And in order for us to be strong anchors, we need to recharge. We need to let the guilt go. We don’t need to be with our kids 24/7. A happy mama is a good mama. But when you start wanting to be away from your kids, it’s okay to tap out. Whether that means you send your kids to daycare for the summer while you don’t work (teacher moms) or plan a girls weekend once a month, do it. Drop the guilt and do whatever you need. I understand it’s not that easy for everyone. But try not to neglect yourself on this journey of motherhood because if you do, it will swallow you whole.
There’s also part of me that doesn’t want Jules to leave daycare. These are her last few months left forever. She’s been at daycare since she was 9 weeks old. She will be 4 this week. The rollercoaster of motherhood will never end and I’ve accepted that. In the meantime, I’ll be here all summer, probably feeling a little guilty but constantly reminding myself to knock it off. I’ll be here breathing life in and out and thanking God for this opportunity to recharge and rediscover myself.