Maybe this is too hard

Maybe this mothering thing is too hard. Last night after I published my post I heard Z coughing. It didn’t sound right so I went and got her, she seem to be having trouble getting air out. She’s never been diagnosed with asthma but it seemed like an attack to me. I called 9 1 1. A few minutes later the medics arrived. They said her lungs sounded clear and it was likely she has croup. We could take her to Children’s ER ourselves, take the ambulance or get her in to the doctor ASAP.  We decided to take her to the doctor in the morning.

C woke up, again in tears.  He says he has scary dreams, he’s had several nights waking up crying.  He keeps saying, “I don’t know what it is dada, I don’t know what it is.”  It breaks my heart.  He is of course, rising before the sun.  I’m really struggling to wake up early enough these days to have my quiet time.  I need to banish the afternoon press pot, or at least make it decaf.

My husband slept in the living room and she slept on the couch. She slept well without any further crying or struggles.  Just to be sure, I was able to get her in to see another doctor in our practice.  My husband took her at noon, it was the first time I didn’t accompany her to the doctor.  That felt strange.

Did you ever have one of those days that felt long, but actually breezed by?

I felt fairly good about the stuff we got done around the house, a few loads of laundry.  I made a chicken in the crockpot, and have bone broth going.  But before I knew it, it was bedtime again.  I really, really feel like I spent my entire day nursing.  It is a struggle to balance the tandem nursing with low supply.  Before J was born, C was only nursing for a minute or two in the morning and before bed, plus if he got hurt.  Now that J is here, he nurses for no less than 10 minutes two or three times a day.

This is so hard for me.  I love holding my babies, and I wouldn’t trade this time for all the complete checklists in the world.  Yet, I struggle to ignore or remove the internal pressure to do things.

Writing every day has been very hard to accomplish, but it has brought me so much inspiration.  I’m excited for my next phase of life, and it is hard to focus on the here-and-now.  That has always been my problem.  Master Yoda could have been referring to me:

All his life has he looked away… to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing. Hmph. Adventure. Heh. Excitement. Heh. A Jedi craves not these things. You are reckless.

Well, after the kids were in bed I decided to watch “The Importance of Being Earnest”  I had never seen it before, and I enjoyed it.  Most of it, until the very end when I projectile vomited all over my couch, and my sleeping baby.  While my husband took her to change her clothes, I tried to make it to the bathroom.  I destroyed my kitchen and hallway on the way.  Gross.

I showered and went to bed early.  I went to bed discouraged, this mothering thing is hard.

While breastfeeding, I fell prey to the internet.  First Modern Mrs. Darcy led me to this article 10 types of Odd Friendships You’re Probably Part Of  and then clicked over to Why Generations Y Yuppies are Unhappy.  It had an equation in it that makes perfect sense to me

Happiness = Reality – Expectations

I know this already, but I have trouble setting reasonable expectations.  Then I tend to say, “I’m overwhelmed.” to my husband.  Everyday.  I need to figure this thing out, so I can really enjoy these days with little ones.  I trust every older person who tells me that I will miss it, and that it passes by quickly.

How have you turned off your inner critic?

Any tips to share on minimizing your postpartum expectations?

Please, share your resources.  I’d love to learn from your experience.


  1. Julia Amos says:

    Dear Stefanie,

    I am so enjoying reading your blog! On so many occasions, you have put into words precisely what I am feeling about motherhood and I am so grateful and inspired! This post in particular, and the one about changing friendships, nearly brought me to tears;you are so spot on about expectations and happiness. I wish we had grown closer while I lived in Milwaukee, but I will settle for Facebook and blog friendship for now 🙂

    You are an amazing mother! Thank you for sharing your heart 🙂


    • SparklyStefka says:

      Julia –

      I thought I had replied to this days ago! My apologies. Yes, I wish we’d gotten to know each other better too. I am so thankful you are enjoying the posts. Mothering is hard work and from what I can tell you are doing a great job. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts too.

  2. Before I had my son I would visit my friend with 2 daughters. I would walk into her house and think “gosh you couldn’t pick up the living room or do the dishes in the sink?” But now I look at my own house and think “I have to do the babies laundry, still fold my own that’s been in the dryer for 2 days. Do the dishes, pay the bills, vacuum the whole house, take the car in for an oil change, and grocery shop.” But honestly it can all wait because I have to nurse then stare at him while he sleeps. The thing is you’ll always have a list of things to do, but it’s more important to spend time with your children while they are still little. The chores will get done eventually and you won’t regret missing the milestones your children make.

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