I am selfish.
That’s the most intensive, destructive problem, I think, in regards to my unperfect parenting. I think of myself, before my children, far too often.
Mothering is a selfless pursuit, in theory. Belly swollen, head hormonal, you imagine entrusting your existence to this small, soft expression of your soul; anticipating the every need of your offspring. Effortlessly filling your time with the wants of theirs. That’s the way humanity dictates it should be.
It’s not that simple.
I find myself clawing, scratching, aching, for the simple pleasures of my previously uncomplicated life. The luxuries I once took for granted as ritual. A bath without toddlers or plastic toys. Half an hour laying in bed on a Sunday morning immersed in the parallel world of a good book. A meal to myself. A week’s wages to myself. An idle minute to myself.
Parenthood had robbed of these things.
But I fight back.
Selfishly, I let the washing sit, cold and crinkled,in the basket, while I natter and gossip on the phone to a friend. Purely for myself, I sit and I blog, rather than steaming vegetables, and the baby will eat from a plastic packet again tonight. For my own devices, I listen to adult songs on adult stations, rather than yet another round of children’s tunes.
I stand fast against the all-consuming expectations of parenthood. For my own crumbling sanity. For some semblance of the person I used to be, before this sleep deprived charade began.
To remember who I am. To have a soul of some of substance to go back to, when my babies are grown and gone.
I am selfish.
This turned out far shorter than I thought it would. It was prompted by Prompt Number Three in Sleep Is For The Weak’s Writing Worshop #28- tell us about a time you’ve put yourself first.