Today was the day that straw broke the camel’s back. Maybe it’s because I’ve been sick for the past two days; maybe it’s because all of our car repairs and the costs are making me anxious; maybe it’s because it’s a snow day; maybe it’s because I try too hard to hold it together.
The emotions have been piling and I could feel that they have been ready to leak out, but today, it came out as a rage. I threw the laundry basket down, slammed some doors, and stomped my feet. I shook in frustration, fear, and anger. Then, I sat down to fold up the laundry that was tossed about and I started to cry. It was a silent cry, at first, then it was a full on sob. It was the kind of ugly cry you hope no one will see or hear. I wailed, too. It just could not be contained.
For 10 minutes, I let myself cry and wail. And now, I am doing my best to stuff it back in because I have to carry on. Lunches have to be made, a little girl’s hair has to be brushed, and work needs to be done. The second load of laundry has to be folded and a new load started. The snow needs to be shoveled. Dinner has to get prepared later.
As I stuff the cries and tears back in, I wonder how parents of multiple children manage and how other wives seem to thrive in their marriages while working, managing the house, and being a mom. It bewilders me and it is something that I feel that I cannot ever grasp. Was it a class that I forgot to take? Perhaps it was a lack of training from growing up? My mother and grandmother somehow held it together until I grew up to reveal even small cracks of their weaknesses.
This balancing act is hard. It makes me want to scream, “My value is just as much as yours! My time is worth just as much as yours! My work is equally as important as yours!” I find myself trying to do everything and to do it all well. I cannot accept a lack because it seems like a failure on my part. I am washed in huge tides of feelings of being overwhelmed, paralyzed in fear of not being able to do it all and to do my best, and a sense of deep sorrow that somehow I am cheating myself and my little girl out of joy, happiness, and the giggles of childhood.
But for now, I am mired in my breaking point and wondering how I will be able to breathe to take the next steps or two – to get through the day. I keep pushing and pushing forward because I don’t know where else to go. Maybe I will go cry a little more.