Wednesday, December 3, 2008


I am a new mother. My son is seven months old and he's my first child. I love him. I love being a mother. I really do.

But I had a breakdown.

A miniature, hysterical breakdown.

It was 5:50 a.m. on Friday. I am in school (law school) Monday through Wednesday from 8-3 Monday & Tuesday, and 8-6 on Wednesday. After one week of waking up nearly every hour, even with my husband taking turns (keeping in mind there is only so much he can do because I breastfeed), I was exhausted. And I broke down. I sobbed. I cried. I retreated to the guest room. I have never been so frustrated and felt so helpless in my life.

I don't know why I felt the need to preface this revelation with insistings about my love for him. But I've obviously decided that it will remain there, so maybe I'm a bit more aware than I'd care to acknowledge. Most parents (my experiences are usually with women), don't acknowledge these breakdowns. Fortunately, my mother has always been straight with me, and that helps. But even with the knowledge that sometimes you will falter, sometimes you will reach the end of your rope, and that sometimes you will breakdown, I still felt bad about it. It was as if I was failing as a mother. As if I was not allowed to be human.

And I am! Allowed to be human, I mean. I am not perfect. I am not always patient. I am not always kind. I do not always do the right thing. Honestly, I'm not sure that I would like to be that way. Imagine being the kid of a perfect parent. Talk about pressure! But it is hard to remind myself that it is good for me to be imperfect, to be human. I wrote this entry to remind myself.

I am a good mother. My son is healthy and thriving. I make his baby food. I'm still breasfeeding for christsakes (lol)! I can spend hours playing with him without realizing how much time has flown by. I think he is the coolest thing on earth (at least in the daytime, ha!). But most important, I love him more than I love myself. And I think (well, I hope) that this is what good mothering boils down to. Possibly, I am not the only new (or experienced) mother who has had or does occasionally have a breakdown. I just hope that if I am not alone, someone is there to tell them that it is okay to be human.

1 comment:

  1. OOOOOOOOoh i can so relate. No you are not alone and like you said my God you are in law school and still breast feeding. Now you make me look bad. I laughed while reading your post. My baby is 3 months and i have had those moments when i am like i love you but damn.
    Keep up the good job and yes we as mom are allow to break down.