I DO NOT have it all together.
I really, really do not. And I do not want to hear, “Yes, you do Heather!”
I want people to know this.
Today I ran into an old client who was struggling with her choice to be home to take care of her loved one with autism. And she asked me for my secrets of how I balance everything. I stared at her for a few seconds, not sure what to say. And then I blurted out, “I don’t balance it all!”.
I wish I had told her more.
I wish I had told her that there are days that I’m thisclose to quitting my job because I don’t feel like I can focus on my children and their accompanying special needs. There are days that I come home with no energy left for the children most important to me. I feel nonstop guilt for missing out on the typical kid things like games and open houses. And I feel nonstop guilt for not having enough time to focus on the non-typical kid stuff like reprogramming the augmentative alternative communication device or making up the visual schedules to get us through the morning routine.
I wish I had told her that I don’t have any alone time with my husband. On the rare occasions we do, we both just want to sleep and not use our brains at all. I wish I had told her how I wish we could be a bit more carefree and go away on a weekend vacation or even just a dinner without weeks of preparation.
I wish I had told her that my house is always a mess. And that I put off my own appointments for months at a time. I wish I had told her that I haven’t had a girls-night out since last May. I wish I had said how I feel like none of my old friends really understand my life or the pressures that I feel I face daily.
I wish I had told her that I’m always feeling behind at work and that I feel guilty for not putting more “extra” time into it.
I wish I had told her that I cry often. Or that I probably drink too much beer and don’t exercise enough. I wish I told her that I often curse the universe for not making “life fair”.
I don’t balance it all and I don’t have it all together. I don’t for one second want anyone to think that they are doing something wrong because they can’t get it together like I seemingly do. Because I don’t.
The true balance is knowing that I don’t have it all together but also knowing to my core that I’m rocking this gig. I know by the smiles on my kids’ faces. And I have a feeling you are rocking it too, even if you are in your sweatpants and haven’t showered and your child has been watching Netflix all day long and there are crumbs and cat hair all over the floor.
No one has it all together or is completely balanced. Stop comparing yourself and if you must judge yourself, do so through your child’s lenses. You are their super-mama! You’ve got this!