You’ve heard of this expression used to describe athletes who push their bodies too far. At this moment their body overrides their desire to run one more lap and stops them cold in their tracks. Being a mom is like running a never ending marathon at times. What I am about to tell you about is something every mother experiences at one point or another. For some it only happens once, for others more often. For some it is only a minor lapse while others have actual psychological breakdowns and really need outside help.
What it Might Look Like
You will wake up one morning and want out. You will daydream about hopping in the car – alone – and going to another place. A place without sippy cups and diapers and homework and laundry and nursery rhymes and meal preparation and….
This may be brought on by a long string of days not leaving the house or not being able to leave the house. Some say it is just boredom, while I think it is just the peak of being overwhelmed. You are a human being, no matter how much you want to dissuade it, your mind does rule over you and will do it’s best to survive everything. Once every bit of patience and sanity has been sucked from you, your mind may start to wander. You might find yourself daydreaming about being on a nice sandy beach with fancy – alcoholic – beverage enjoying the sounds of silence. You need to learn to recognize the signs that you could be getting close to the wall. Laundry piling up higher than normal, serving fast food more often than not, uncontrollable yawning – all day long – and forgetting the words to the itsy bitsy spider. These are all classical signs of what I call hitting the mommy wall.
How to Respond
Let me be clear here – this says absolutely nothing about how much you love your children and your family. It says nothing about your ability to be a mom. There is a reason most career type jobs offer paid vacation in their benefits package. If they let their employees work non-stop, year after year, they will all go bonkers. Sometimes we all need a change of pace or at least scenery. It is good for your mental and emotional well being.
You must act quickly. Change things up. Look for a new activity you can add to your week – either just for you or with your children. Get out of the deep dark rut you have created for you and your family to travel in day after day. It can be as simple as change the route you take to the places you go on a regular basis. If you have ever experienced the “When did they build that?” thought on your daily route – you need to change things. As much as you want to believe it – they did not build a whole new gas station over night (it at least took a few days). You can not let yourself fly through life on auto pilot – you will be in the fast lane headed straight for the thickest part of the wall.
It takes some Effort
You have to be in control of your life and what happens. If you want to be a happy healthy person you have to work at it. And the way you know you are doing this successfully is when you look and feel like things are happening effortlessly. Like they say – it takes a lot of work to look like you rolled out of bed looking this way.