Comparing others is meaningless

This post is really just for me.  Think of it as a mental pep talk that’s written down and not in a journal.  But then maybe some one out there feels the way I do.

You see.

I have several friends who are mothers and are going to school.  One mother has a little toddler, and she works full-time, and she’s pursuing her master’s.  And she’s amazing, and I don’t know how she does it.  Another mother has four kids ( two girls older than mine and twin boys just 18 months), and she works part-time, and she’s getting her bachelor’s in history to pursue a high school teaching career.  And she is amazing, and I don’t know how she does it.  Another mother with two kids (a girl, Evan’s age, and a boy, Sean’s age {and yes, this family is mentioned a bit here.}), and she works part-time, and she’s taking classes to get her AA in food prep or food science or restaurant management or whatever looks cool that you got if you want to open a bakery.  And she’s amazing, and I don’t know how she does it.

They all dabble in crafts.  They all read books.  They are amazing moms that do things with their kids.  They’re great wives.  I know two out of three of them cook amazing food.  I know that all three run the household.  Like I said, they’re amazing, and I don’t know how they do it.

And then there’s me.  I have three boys, and I’m getting my teaching certificate.  And I don’t work.  I barely have time to write a blog post and never have time to read blogs, which makes me so depressed.  I need to do something creative or I die a little, and most days go by without that.  Some days my house is clean enough that mice and roaches don’t set up shop, and that drives me crazy.   Some nights as I tuck the boys into bed, I think, “What did we do today?  Other than the stuff that needs to get done?”

And then I want to call my friends up and say, “HOW THE HELL ARE YOU DOING THIS?!” 

Just when I’m ready to cry in frustration as I look at the toys that need to be put away (because I forgot to tell the boys to do it and help Aidan do it) and the dishwasher that needs to be loaded to be unloaded the next day and think of the homework that needs to be done and look at the dirty floors that host the 5-second rule and think of the smelly bathroom to clean and miss my blogger friends and all my other friends, a little voice talks sense into me.  A little voice that sounds a lot like my best friend.  “They’re married.  All three of them are married to great guys.”

My friend, who is getting her master’s, is married to a guy who pitches in on the housework, cooking, and child rearing.  He takes their daughter out all day, so my friend can have one day a weekend to do homework.  My friend, with the four kids, has a husband who helps with the housework and cooking.  He fixes stuff and takes care of the kids.  He’s a great dad.  Oh and to top it off, his dad and stepmom take the kids every other weekend, since the kids were babies.  My other friend complains that her husband doesn’t do enough, which may be true.  But I know he fixes things and cooks.  He shoulders half the parenting burden, and when money was tight, he baked bread to save money.

And I do this alone.  Not that it’s a stretch from what it used to be.  A couple of hours, most days a week,  the ex is a babysitter at my house, and sometimes he buys dinner.  The rest is me.  Every day.  From morning until the night.  Every chore.

I’m slowly accepting my limitations.  I ask the boys to do more things for me.  I ask my parents to watch the kids so I can do homework when I’m seriously behind.  I’m trying to accept a messy house is ok, and I’m trying to remember to make sure the boys pick up their toys and their clothes right away.  I’m trying not to feel guilty when I take a nap.  (Hey, I was up until 2 am doing laundry, and I’m a little cranky when I’m tired.  Also when I’m hungry.  Ok, truthfully, I’m really cranky when I’m hungry.)  And yes, I need to carve out more time to be creative and to write and to read.  And I need to start the bedtime routine earlier so we can read more and be with each other. 

I’m getting a handle on this.

I just have to be gentle with myself.

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2 Responses to “Comparing others is meaningless”

  1. Emma Duncan Says:

    You’re AMAZING!

  2. Elastamom Says:

    You really do have to be gentle with yourself. And comparison is the worst thing we can do to ourselves.


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