I'm not sure if it's been going on since the first day of kindergarten, but I've noticed ever since my son skipped to first grade I have been super sensitive about other people's opinions. It's made me regress by about 20 years. I suddenly find myself worried about the clothes he's wearing or how his homework looks or that I seem to be the only parent who doesn't drive their kid to school. Can I be perfectly honest? I've become what I loathe. I feel like all the "I don't care what you think" stuff that comes with being 30 has completely disappeared. I feel like I have to constantly justify his grade skipping. Like I have to apologize for it and be like, "but look, he really does know all of this already." I've been trying to hide it from him, but he knows I'm stressed and that it has something to do with him, I'm sure of it. More mom guilt! ARG! I used to be so chill, where did that go?
Thursday after I dropped him off at school, scrambled to buy balloons & other birthday extras I cared about more than he did (I forgot the balloons!!! I'm the worst mother in the world!!!) I came home and tried to get the baby to take her nap and make the crust for a pie (he wanted pie, not cake). She woke up after 10 minutes and wouldn't stop crying. That was when I broke. I fell to the floor and just held her and cried right along with her. It was all too much. No matter how much I declutter I can't keep my house clean! I really can't. I have a toddler who loves clothes, nuff said. I can't remember every single appointment. I can't please everyone with my church service. No matter what, someone will complain. And I can't visit everyone I'm supposed to. I don't even like half of them! That seems like the greatest sin of all?
Confession: I don't like that lady that everyone else does. I actually can't stand her or her children. There. I said it. And I cried about it for a good 40 minutes. Because I want to be a nice person who can see the good in everyone, but there are always those people I just can't seem to muster any charity for. Maybe because they remind me of the "popular group" in school. Maybe because they mirror all the things I don't like about myself. I'm still trying to figure it out.
The timer for the pie crust went off and I got up and wiped the tears away and put on my happy face for my son and enjoyed his birthday with our family coming to visit.
But it felt good to cry. And it felt even better when my daughter brought me her blanky and elephant to help me be happy.
The next day was the costume parade. As I watched my son I realized with motherly pride that he really wasn't like other kids. He's sensitive & doesn't pick up on social cues very well. I always thought he'd just "catch up later", but now I don't really want him to. While sometimes his feelings do get hurt by teasing kids, for the most part he's happy just to be himself. I also realized that I was starting to get a plugged duct & 10 minutes after walking into my house felt the brick wall flu feeling. Early intervention seems to have prevented a full on mastitis infection though.
But it got me thinking how I was stressing myself out to the detriment of my own health and my family's well-being. I may or may not have been yelling waaay too much the past couple of weeks. I got my priorities all mixed up and need to spend some time getting them fixed again.
My greatest flaw is probably how much I worry about the opinions of people that don't matter & usually that I don't even like. Peer pressure sometimes seems harder as adult. Maybe because people are now judging our kids as well. I don't have much else to add, just the scripture that's been going through my head the last few days as I've reached my breaking point:
Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.