Sunday, November 3, 2013

Losing It.

So I guess this is about being WOHM.  The only thing I would change about my situation is to teach 4 classes instead of 5 like I asked for last year, but otherwise, I would still be a WOHM and a mom.

In the normal course of a school year, I often get very stressed the point of tears.  It probably happens 3-4 times a school year and is definitely worse at the beginning of the year.  When I'm not near tears, I have constant tightness in my shoulders.  Abnormal tightness.  I definitely have some anxiety issues, but so far never bad enough to seek help.

So teaching like normal while being a parent is hard!

I'm actually managing it pretty well.  I stay at school until 3:30, an hour after the last class.  Until this last week, I got more done on my prep period and after school than ever before.  I'm relatively caught up on papers, I'm relatively prepared for what I'm teaching.  But still I always feel like I'm a day from everything spiraling out of control.  Then I come home and am with Dylan from about 4 until nearly 8.  We usually eat dinner after he goes to bed because it's just easier.

Last year, when I got home from school, I'd decompress.  I like it quiet.  My day is really loud.  Now I can't decompress until 8.  And I usually do - and it works well enough.

But there is so much else. There's my laundry.  And cleaning out the refrigerator.  And grading the papers.  And I think it got worse last week because it was the second week without the nanny.  She didn't do a ton to help me, but did take care of Dylan's laundry and I didn't have to prepare food for him the night before.

I was feeling caught up on the papers, partially because I was having my students do in-class writing.  A classroom full of students writing quietly = great paper-grading time.  The problem: they turn in more papers at the end of the period!!  I have a student TA grade all the little stuff, but I still have two classes of AP essays, 2 classes of analysis paragraphs and in the next two weeks I'll be collecting MAJOR assignments...the kind that I need an entire Thanksgiving or Christmas vacation to grade.  What I currently have with me would probably take 4-5 hours if I was really focused.

Besides those stresses, I'm having light sensitivity which I think it being caused by tension in my forehead (thanks Goo.g.le).  I also have a diminished appetite which is not like me at all.  I'm having trouble actually eating some foods, with absolutely no warning.  The only other time I've had this problem is when I was pregnant.  (And no that is a complete impossibility.  You have to have sex to get pregnant.  We don't.)  So tonight I ate cereal instead of the ravioli I was supposed to eat for dinner.  And I'm still hungry.

So basically - I completely enjoy my life - but I have absolutely no personal time.  And I don't really expect to.  But the lack of personal time and the same stresses I had pre-child are creating an untenable situation.  I need to figure out how to find some small bits of time for myself both to take care of things around the house and take care of myself i.e. massages or yoga or else I will become a tightly-woven sobbing mess.  And that won't help anybody.

And so I'm taking the day off tomorrow.  First, I will do laundry.  Then I will put away all of the clothes that are in various places around the house.  Then I will grade papers and/or plan classes.  Then I will get a massage.

And thank goodness for grandmas.  The new nanny (who I think I love) is starting on Thursday, but my wonderful mother will be here tomorrow and Tuesday. She's the very best.

And the part of the post your probably enjoy the most...touchdown!


  1. Oh honey. I know how you feel and I completely and totally empathize. I have a stack of essays at home to grade tonight. They were supposed to get graded this weekend. I was supposed to grade them at work today because that obviously didn't happen. And now they're at home on the dining room table. I too am collecting a major essay...Wednesday.

    I'm so happy you're taking today off!!! You're entitled to a mental health day. Enjoy every.little.second of that massage!!!!

    I know that nothing I say can really help, but you're not alone. I like being a working momma, but it's a lot of work. I know that SAHMs work hard too, but I feel like sometimes they're very woe-is-me and people make a big deal about it...but what about us? We choose to work and be awesome mommas...where are the highly-publicized blog posts that make us out to be the superwomen that we are?! (blog post I've been writing in my head for weeks now).


  2. Glad you're taking some time for yourself. If you're not feeling better in a few days, 2 recommendations. 1, what you're not doing is a good stress reliever and may help you more than you think and 2, get a therapist for a couple of sessions. When I was feeling like I couldn't handle one more thing and I couldn't decompress, it turned our to be latent NICU PTSD and talking to a pro helped a lot.

  3. Being a working mom is tough. Being a stay at home mom is tough. Pretty much, being a mom is tough. We get up around 5 am most days (including weekends) and some days I am just counting down the hours until 8:30 when I can finally do my own thing. But there is usually laundry to be done, a dishwasher to empty and reload, my daughter's bag to pack, my lunch to pack, plus I shower at night and am usually bone tired by 9 pm. What really drives me insane is that come 8:30 pm, my husband wants my attention and I just honestly want to be by myself. My only time alone comes with the daily commute, and driving 45 min each way in rush hour traffic is not exactly relaxing. Sometimes my husband will work really late (like 9 or 10) and while that means I have to do everything alone, sometimes that is a relief- one less person to feel like I have to entertain. I don't like to take days off from work because I am hoarding them for days when my daughter gets sent home from daycare for having 100.4 degree temp and is banned from returning for 24 hours.

    It's hard. Hope you enjoyed your day off.

  4. Oh my....this brought me back. This was me about 2 1/2 years ago. Not a teacher...but I work a pretty high stress job in the tech field which is usually more than 40 hours a week. I had just had my 2nd son was 2 1/2 and becoming a terror. We sold a house, bought a house and remodelled a house my entire 4 month maternity leave (ie....i got NO nice lay around time with my new baby..). When I went back our kids were in full time daycare....I had to pack lunches, pumpl and pack milk for baby....I dropped them off at 7:45 and picked them up at 5:30 (and that was a good day). Then it was dinner, baths, snuggle time, pumping, packing of lunches, laundry etc etc etc....each night from 5;30 to 8:30ish when the kids went down was nonstop...and usually AFTER that was when I would then pump again, prep for the next day and finish up what laundry I had. I seriously felt like a zombie...because my daughter was NOT a good sleeper and this was right about the time her chronic ear infections set in. it really was HELL!!!! is the good part....I survived....and I learned a really, really good lesson......As a is okay to ask for help (and my hubby is great...don't think he is not) but we (as women) tend to take on so much more as a WOHM vs the WOHDs. It is just in our nature. hubby and I took turns doing the things we hated the most and we MADE personal time. He would get the kids from daycare and I would go right to yoga after work at least one night a week....or stop for a pedicure. We got a routine on the laundry, and we made sure that Friday nights were just 100% downtime. No prep for the next fancy meals, no laundry...just relaxation.... You will survive. I supose I could have quit my job....but seriously...I'm not cut out to be a full time stay at homer. My ideal would be to work about 25-30 hours a week....but my profession...that is hard. But maybe someday. Hang in there mama. I think your day off is a great plan and you will feel soooo much better. hugs.

  5. I so get this. Omg I so so so so so get this. I don't have any advice or tips to offer because I'm totally stuck in this too. Let me know what works!