Do you ever find yourself making excuses? I've realised i have been doing a lot of that lately and i think it is beginning to mess with my head a little! I'm glad i have finally understood what i am doing though.
I hear myself making excuses for Ruby's lack of concentration and her need to bounce and run and move when we attend structured activities. I don't seem to be able to find the words to help people understand that she is not being naughty, that I'm not justifying her seemingly not listening to them.
I'm making excuses because i don't know how to explain her sensory needs in a way that people understand. It's not something that has a fancy label or lots of publicity. It is not something that is readily understood or explained as there are so many variables to a sensory processing disorder and how it affects each child. So i find myself stumbling and coming up with excuses and feeble explanations.
I am learning a lot about this disorder but i am still yet to learn how to explain it to others in a succinct way that makes sense….perhaps because i still don't fully understand it myself.
I hear myself making excuses to stay home and not socialise or attend playgroups and playdates because it just seems like to much effort sometimes…even though i know i should.
I hear myself making excuses when i look into the mirror and no longer recognise the person standing there. The person in the mirror is 40, overweight and a little down. I don't recognise that body or fully understand how i have put on so much weight since the twins were born. I make excuses but deep down i know it isn't because of a lack of time or energy…they are just excuses. I'm just not looking after myself and i have been eating my stress and emotions since the girls came along.
Every day i promise my inner self that i will spend some time eating healthily and exercising but then the emotions and exhaustion surface and by lunchtime i am back to square one…..and making excuses why today wasn't the day to start looking after myself .
I hear myself making excuses for my increasing snappy moods and inexplicable tears….lack of sleep, being at home all day with twin 2 yr olds, coping with a teens social schedule……but i know they are just excuses….the depression i experienced post natally is still there….still needing to be ‘fixed', it's not just a bad day, it's not something to deny and hide. Excuses and denial of how i feel at times will not help me….and i say that because i know i am not alone in these sort of thoughts.
Often as parents we put ourselves at the bottom of a very long line and feel the need to pretend that everything is ok. We don't want to rock the boat or upset anyone, we need to ensure our family's needs are put first. Surely how we are feeling is nothing to serious. Sometimes it is though and we realise we should have acted sooner. I'm glad to have finally reached that point and am now hoping for sunnier days ahead soon.
I hear myself making excuses for not wanting to take Miss Teen on a driving lesson and then feeling so awful when i see the disappointment on her beautiful eager face. How do i explain i am so very scared of giving over that control in the car, that i don't want her to drive yet, that i don't understand how she got so old right under my nose….that i feel as if she is slipping away and i haven't ‘taught' her enough of the other important things yet. That if she can't drive perhaps she will stay safe here at home.
Excuses have indeed become an everyday occurrence in my life at the moment….it has been a revelation though and i now see what i am doing and what it is doing to my head to be in this constant cycle.
It can sometimes be hard to face reality and find the right words to explain our actions or those of our kids, difficult to face hard truths and the fact that there may not be an immediate solution or ‘mummy fix'……difficult to just be in the moment without thinking about the future.
I'm sharing my thoughts on making excuses not because i want readers to feel sorry for me but because i know that i am not the only one feeling this way…not the only one who has seen a blog or pin on pinterest today and felt a little inferior and imperfect in comparison to those parents, not the only one who is feeling down or trying to find the words to explain their child's special needs, not the only one who is emotional eating and fighting a battle with their weight, not the only one who is tired and stressed, not the only one who feels they need to do better and yet still put themselves last.
I just wanted to let you know that you are not alone…..put yourself to the top of the pile for even just one day and ask for some help or support from a loved one or friend. Recognise that we can't be the perfect parent…or partner….or wife…or husband….no one can…what we can do is reach out and support one another to be the person we are happy to see in the mirror each morning.
We can try to stop making those excuses and accept we are doing the best that we can….and that needs to be enough. Sometimes there is no easy explanation or action.
Sending a big hug out to everyone who has felt this way at one time or another….thanks also for joining me on my own journey….and allowing me to share it with you.
Happy Whimsical Hearts says
You’re amazing Jode, for sharing such personal thoughts with us, and for being honest with yourself like this. And you are right, excuses become so easy to make ~ easier sometimes then getting in and ‘doing’. But good on your for recognising what you are doing! An excuse to be kind to yourself is ok sometimes though right 🙂
Little Home In The Country says
Oh, Jode – you’ve hit the nail on the head! I am a terrible procrastinator by nature so excuses are a part of my daily dialogue (internal and external). it has been a daily battle to TRY to overcome that. I began last year with the simple task of doing one uncomfortable/hard thing each day. Some days were small, others, were huge! That exercise really got me outside of my comfort zone and helped me to break out of old patterns. I’m doing things now that I never thought I’d be doing, but those same old excuses still linger… but they’re a little quieter now… Soon, I hope they’ll be gone forever 🙂
Any process of major change takes a very long time. As a (past) fellow post natal depression sufferer, I know that the need for both strength and tenderness is REAL. Be strong each day and do something HARD, but be TENDER, for you are still healing.
Jodie Clarke says
Thank you so much for your lovely words…you have no idea how they have helped and it is so nice to know i am not alone!
I really love your do something hard but tender…wonderful advice xxx
Enchanted Moments says
You just made me cry, no you are not the only one….x
Jodie Clarke says
Awww, sorry to make you cry but i’m so glad to know i am not alone…big hugs xxx
I’m right there with you with a big hug. Thank you for sharing what you’re going through.
Jodie Clarke says
Thank you so much Lynda…lovely of you to take the time to comment xx
Jode, Thanks for being that uplifting, honest, beautiful voice in my life today. I can relate to so much of what you’ve shared. And, it does help to know we are not alone.
Jodie Clarke says
Kimberly…readers such as yourself is one of the reasons i try to be as honest and raw in some of these sort of posts as i can. You have made my day…sending big hugs your way xx
dear molly says
Oh Jode, just know that you don’t need to make excuses to anyone.
I do know what you mean though..I became the queen of excuses with my pnd and still find myself falling into that trap even now.
Thanks so much for your honesty, it’s always appreciated.
Dawn Reber says
Jodie, thank you so much for sharing you honesty. You are not a perfect parent, but no of us are! I think we all need to stop believing that anyone has their poop together, they are just better at hiding it! I have often told my friends that as parents, we need to be a bit selfish and take care of ourselves first. After all, if we are sick, how can we possibly do what we need to do. Yet, I am the worst person for doing that. I focus so much time and effort into my daughter that it’s often the middle of the afternoon when I realize that I am shaking and feeling like crap because I’ve only had coffee up until this point! We all need to come together in honesty and share our struggles and joys. The minute we do that, we will all see that we are all in the same boat, experiencing (mostly) the same things.
Jodie Clarke says
I just love the wisdom and honesty of your words Dawn! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment!!I do think if more of us shared our struggles like you mention then we may stop comparing and realise it is ok to put ourselves first occasionally!
The Monko says
Oh Jode, sending a big hug right back at ya. What an amazing, open and honest post. It really got me thinking too about the excuses I make – especially about the eating and not exercising, despite being told by the maternity nurses I was likely to get type 2 diabetes if I didn’t do something about the weight.
I’m featuring your post on the Sunday Parenting Party this weekend in the hope that it will touch many others the way it has me. (I’d offer you an “I was featured” button but you’ve already got one)
Hi Jodie, Just wanted to let you know that I love your musings and ideas (and I am not a big web surfing kind of person) and that far from making me feel inferior reading blogs like yours is an absolute life saver for me at times as I have got so many great ideas for keeping my girl engaged / creatively playing. THANKS!!