I go to lower my body into the tub and I feel the burn on my hand.
The days have been endless. Mini has been out of sorts. Confused about our move. Confused about Daddy being gone for work. Confused as to why we are staying at Grandma’s while we sit in limbo. She reacts as any three year old would. By rebelling. Each day feels like a lifetime. Even with my mom helping. She is tough and defiant. She doesn’t listen no matter what.
My hand still burns. A reminder of how she scratched me. With a determined look in her eyes. To show me she was the boss. She scratched my hand. Over and over. Until all of the skin was torn and you could see little dots of blood. I just stood there and let her do it. Defeated. Where is my white flag? I couldn’t speak. Didn’t try to stop her. She knew she hurt me. Physically. I am not sure she understands how it hurts me mentally. She is three, she cannot comprehend that. Or can she? After being yelled at and punished, she apologized profusely and gave me a hug and kiss. But my hand still burns as I sit here. A reminder of how I failed her today. And many days. How I don’t really know if I am doing this whole mothering thing correctly. Is what I am doing working? Should I try different approaches? Where is the god damn manual?
These are the negatives. The thoughts that don’t make facebook. The photos that aren’t on my instagram. The ones I want to bottle up and hide because I am embarrassed. Maybe your kid doesn’t scratch you when she is angry. With such a look of determination. I cannot get the image out of my head. So I don’t tell the story. I don’t want to admit my failures. I don’t want to admit that my days aren’t all sunshine and unicorns as social media might display. Some days are dark, full of rain clouds and time outs.
And then I think, I cannot be alone. I cannot be the only one fighting this battle. So I am sharing. Sharing how I feel outnumbered by 2 children. That even with help, I still feel like I am drowning. Struggling for air. Desperate for a breath sometimes. Feeling so emotionally and physically drained I don’t know where I will find the strength to give her a bath. And suddenly she sleeps. So peacefully. Her face looks so angelic. So I lay and stare at her. Run my finger down her cheek. Kiss her little pursed lips. I created her. She is my storm to weather. I can do this. The days may be endless but the sun will always set. Every morning is like a fresh page. A chance for new beginnings. Tomorrow is a new day. I welcome the opportunity to try again. I will wake up ready to be her mother every day for the rest of my life, and I will go to bed grateful for the chance, regardless of what the day had in store.