Monster Mommy Moment – Helene Style

 MommyofaMonster
Today, I am so excited to have one of my first blogging friends here: Helene from I’m Living Proof That God has a Sense of Humor, who is sharing a Monster Mommy Moment with us!
No idea what a Monster Mommy Moment is? You can read all about how my new weekly feature came to be here.
Helene is my favorite mom of multiples bloggers…she has TWO SETS of twins, people! And you all thought I had it rough! She is laugh out loud funny and really honest (as you’ll see in the post here), and she has been a huge supporter of mine as well as a huge source of information when I first got going with this whole blogging gig.

So grab a cup of coffee and a donut, ahem, I mean a low-fat muffin, or depending on the time of the day maybe some wine and chocolate, and sit back and enjoy Helene’s Monster Mommy Moment!

———-
Monster Mommy Moment
When Natalie asked me if I’d like to share a Monster Mommy Moment, I panicked. Not because I worried I wouldn’t have anything to share.
Oh no, quite the opposite. I worried that I wouldn’t be able to pick just ONE moment because they happen to me so often, like 4-times-a-day often.
You know, all those times I’ve dropped the F-bomb in front of my kids or forgot about them when they needed help in the bathroom…
But, if I’m going to put it all out there, I really should go for the mother of all Monster Mommy Moments. So here goes…
One evening while rocking my 1st set of twins to sleep, as they both took turns shrieking distressful cries in my ears, I realized that I wasn’t in love with motherhood, in the least.
Yes, this is coming from a woman who endured 3 IVF’s, 1 frozen IVF, and 3 miscarriages in order to finally achieve her dream of having a family.
I was beyond devastated when Tim and I learned that we had a 1-3% chance of ever conceiving a take-home baby.
There were many fantasies which I was forced to grieve during that time…like, nursing my baby while we snuggled together in a cozy bed and the sweet scent of a freshly washed baby whom I would lovingly rock to sleep every night.
Of course, just when it seemed like parenthood was never going to be a reality for me, I wanted it so badly that every bone in my body ached.
With each joyous mother I encountered, I’d stare daggers at her, wishing she could feel even just an ounce of my heartache. I began to avoid the grocery store and Target because it seemed like every pregnant woman on earth was shopping at the same exact time and place as me.
As if my infertility was God’s idea of a cruel joke.
In the end, my husband and I were blessed…and then some. 2 sets of twins, within a period of 2 years. This was no longer a cruel joke but more like proof that God has a bizarre sense of humor.
I was overjoyed to be a mother, finally, and I expected it to be everything I had dreamed of and more.
What I hadn’t anticipated was:
• Suffering from post-partum depression so crippling that it turned my world upside down
• the inability to breastfeed my babies successfully and the immense amount of guilt associated with it
• sleep deprivation so severe that I wanted to claw my eyes out each and every time one of my babies cried in the middle of the night
• daydreaming about how much easier life would’ve been if I hadn’t tried so damn hard to have children in the first place
• being so distraught and overwhelmed every hour of the day that I dreaded my very existence
I was in a scary place and wondered what the hell was wrong with me. What made it worse was the constant comparison I made between myself and those friends of mine who had struggled with infertility alongside me.
Some of these women were now mothers, as well, yet they would go on and on declaring how wonderful motherhood was.
Completely boggled, I would ask, “So are you saying you love every second of this? Aren’t you tired all the time?”
One friend in particular stated, “I LOVE everything about being a mother…I can’t wait to get up in the middle of the night and feed my daughter. I can’t stop staring at her. This is such an amazing experience!”
I didn’t know anyone who felt the way I did, which in turn, only added to the feelings of inadequacy and isolation.
Dare I even say this…at times, I resented my children. That may seem downright evil and some may think that I don’t deserve to be a mother. But I’m just keeping it real, people.
Sometimes when my babies would cry endlessly for unknown reasons that I, for the life of me, COULD NOT FIGURE OUT, I would sob along with them, regretting my decision to have children…wishing that I could have my old life back, wondering why I ever thought motherhood would be so extraordinarily marvelous 100% of the time.
Flash forward 6.5 years…add in a prescription for Wellbutrin, a healthy boost of self-confidence and the ability to admit to myself when I’m in over my head…I finally feel like I have a handle on things.
I’m well aware of the fact that I glamorized the hell out of motherhood initially. I mistakenly thought it would be all sunshine and roses and believed because I struggled more than some others that I was deserving of nothing but happiness and joy.
There are always going to be women in this world who believe whole-heartedly that their sole purpose in life was to be a mother. Those are the ones who say their lives had no meaning until they held their first-born child and revel in every glorious moment.
However, I’m not one of those women…never have been, never will be. I used to be ashamed and scared of what others would think of me if I ever muttered those words out loud. But I’ve been fortunate to discover a group of friends who share these same feelings, as we laugh for hours while trading motherhood horror stories.
I love my kids with all my heart and my life is pretty damn good. Despite this, I’m not in love with motherhood every single waking moment of my life.
If there’s anything I’ve learned, it’s that everything in life worth having is not necessarily going to be an easy or enjoyable experience all the time.
And I’m okay with that. I have found my peace.

———-
And now you see why I love my friend Helen. She’s super honest, and not afraid to share thoughts and feeling that many of us experience, but are too embarrassed/ashamed to admit.

Thank you Helene, for reminding us that we are all sharing the same experiences and that we’re all in this together and that we can learn from each other’s mistakes experiences.

Now go swing by I’m Living Proof That God has a Sense of Humor and say hello to Helene, and if you’re new there make sure to tell her that I sent you. I know you’ll really enjoy her blog!

And so it goes…

Comments

  1. Thank you so much for this opportunity, Natalie!!!! It's such a wonderful thing you are doing, letting us moms have this outlet for a sounding board! And it is always comforting to know there are others who have felt the same way!

  2. That is a great post and I can totally relate. i don't have twins…but I have experienced plenty of moments where I daydreamed about my life before kids…but then one of them hugs me or smiles at me and I guess that is what makes it all worth it.

  3. Allyson & Jere says:

    Yep, love the honesty. I think ALL of us feel like this to some degree and some time or another. Raising kids is just HARD.

    Natallie….I'm so sorry. I sent you my stuff and it got returned, saying your e-mail was fatal errors or something. I just re sent it. Hopefully it'll go through and you can use it next week.

  4. Dysfunctional Mom says:

    I love Helene too, and this post is a perfect example of why. She is so real & honest, and as a parent she reminds me of ME! Except I didn't get any 2 for 1 deals. 😉

  5. Bravo, Helene! I had many of those "I want a do-over" moments early on with my first. It's so hard when you've created a fantasy world in your head (as I did too).

    It looks like you've come around, though. Great post :)

  6. Wow, two sets of twins. I can't imagine. I don't really believe that woman who said she loved everything about motherhood. Being a mom has its ups and downs and we shouldn't feel bad if we don't enjoy all of them.

  7. Helene I was right there with you the first few months after my twins were born. I kept asking myself WHY I had wanted a baby so bad, and I hated feeding them every two hours at night. I think I really love my sleep, because now that they are seven months and sleeping and napping well, I love motherhood a whole lot more. Now I ask my husband if we can have more kids, and he thinks I'm crazy. You are seriously amazing for raising twins twice so close together..

  8. Tiffany Poppema says:

    Oh my dearest Helene, I'm right there with ya sister. While sitting in the fertility doctor's office for the 2nd time – and already having the 1st set of twins at home, and upon finding out that yes indeed! there were (gasp and smiles from the doctor) 2 more babies in there this time! Wow! I freaked out and yelled at him "And YOU wanted to put 3 embryos in there!". I'm sure the ungratefullness I felt then has displayed itself time and TIME again. 😉

    One of my fave sayings is "Nothing will ever make you as happy or as sad, as proud or as tired, as motherhood". (They should've added or as bitchy or as psycho for peeps like us with 2 sets!)

    Love ya girl – and LOVE the recent posts especially. Laughed totally out loud about the tampon post. Eeeeuw. If it makes you feel any better, my 3 1/2 year old Owen likes to walk around with his hand in his butt crack and then say loudly for allllll to hear "my hand kinda stinks!".

  9. I LOVE Helene. She just makes me feel normal.

  10. Huge fan of Helene! Great post (again!) – love that you keep it real and honest! Doesn't hurt that you write so beautifully (where's that book?).
    Natalie – great blog – great concept on the Monster Mommy Moment!! I'll be back!

  11. MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) says:

    Fantastic post, Helene (as always!)! I have to say, I'm not **in love** with every single aspect of motherhood, either.

    Until I started to look around, and ever-so-timidly ask questions of some friends, I thought all other women were "sunshine and butterflies" all the time, and **I** was the only odd one…which, as you said, made those feelings all the worse. I don't know if it's societal pressures or what, but most folks don't talk about the friggin' hard side of being a mommy (or, if they did, maybe I just didn't believe them – and therefore tuned them out – before my kiddos were born!). :)

    It was such a relief to know I wasn't the only "oddball" who didn't love sleeping in 90-minute increments and smelling like spit-up. :)

  12. Hello! I'm Kate. says:

    My aunt told me one time that she things women get married just for the babies.

    At which point my other aunt & I BOTH said at the EXACT same time "That's crap!"

    I have friends who have gotten married solely because they wanted to be wives & mothers. That's great for them, but it's not why I got married!

    And I was never excited to get up in the middle of the night-it was not fun to me at all!

    Great Post! I think you're awesome!

  13. Marcia (123 blog) says:

    Helene, fantastic post as always. I'm definitely with you on this one – it is not 100% fun and especially those early days!

    A twin mom at work phoned me to work the other day, crying on the phone and I told her to get herself to the doctor and get some meds – all the people who say they love every moment are LYING! I also told her to just count down the hours and sometime around the 3 – 4 month mark, it'll get better. At least I hope so :)

  14. Eva Gallant says:

    I have been a follower of Helen's for over a year and always look forward to her posts. Some are funny, some are outright hilarious, and some are poignant; all are worth the read!

  15. MommaKiss says:

    Helene, I’m not one of those women either…never have been, never will be. I would go to the ends of the earth for my children. But to Love getting up at 3am? Like to look forward to that shit? Nuh uh. Or to LOVEbeing told that I'm not their friend or to LOVE watching them toss a fit on the sidewalk? nope. Wait, that's actually kind of funny to watch, but see? there I go again, being "not one of those women."   Nat, you picked a great real momma to feature! this is perfect

  16. Mama Jules says:

    I love Helene and her blog! I love being a mom, but I definitely have my fair share of moments where I don't like it.

    Who looks forward to those late night feedings?! That woman must have been delirious due to sleep deprivation!

  17. Twins Squared says:

    Helene, I can't stand it when I hear someone say that about loving to wake up and feed them or how now their life has meaning, etc.

    I love being a mom but I often LONG for my pre-mom days. Like, if I could just live like that for a week, you know?

    My twins are 6 and 3 and I still hate feeding them and I'm still up almost every night. Getting a little sick of it here.

    Thanks for keeping it real. That's the way I prefer it!

  18. Helene— I applaud you for this incredibly honest post.

    I know that admitting to being an imperfect mother is the "trend du jour" as another blogger wrote last week but I think that is nothing but I good thing. If we are all honest about our struggles as mothers then people wouldn't go into parenthood with such unrealistic expectations.

    Parenting is hard work. You have successes and failures every day. That doesn't mean there isn't also incredible happiness. And it doesn't mean that we are bad mothers for thinking our children are anything less than magical beings of joy.

    If someone says any different, I have a hard time buying it.

  19. blueviolet says:

    I'm not sure there's a one of us who didn't glamorize motherhood before it was actually upon us. The reality is that it's not all happy puppies and sunshine. Nothing in life is, but overall, it's pretty freakin' spectacular.

  20. I LOVE this post. Thank you so much for guesting here, and for pouring your heart out and being real. I heart your honesty, bigtime. You are such an encouragement to women who just dont SAY they cant do it all and feel these same feelings and feel horrible shame from them. Your speaking can free them from that. LOVE this.

  21. Helene is one of my all-time faves.

    I remember those days of crying right along with my babies.

    And I think it's awesome to even consider bf twins. When the doctor thought my third baby was twins, my first reaction(well, second, after oh shit- 4 kids under 4???) was no way am I bf these kids.

  22. Christina says:

    All that crap totally happened to me too. It sucked so much at first. I'm glad I finally got the hang of it. =)

  23. Sean Patrick and Emma Jane says:

    Wow I am so glad other people feel the same way as me. I love, love, LOVE this post!!

  24. You are not alone. Motherhood was not my calling. Hence the only child. It only took about 6 weeks to know it wouldn't happen again.
    And yes, I love my daughter more than anything.

    However, I think grandmothering is going to be a better place for me.

  25. Mighty M says:

    I love Helene's blog and her brutal honesty! Thanks for sharing this Helene – you are definitely not alone!! :)

  26. MamaRobinJ says:

    I think women who say they love EVERYTHING about it are full of it. There's just no way.

    I felt a lot like you, but without the infertility. I can imagine that must make it extra hard.

    Thanks for your honesty!

  27. I think Helene is one awesome woman. This Ozark Farm Chick only raised two singles, three and a half years apart. My hats off to Miss Helene with two sets of twins so very close together.

    You go girl!!! :o)

    Ya'll have a wonderfully blessed and beautiful Spring Day!

  28. I'm Jennifer. says:

    It's always such a relief to find other moms who share my sometimes un-love with motherhood. Love the kids all the time, love being a mom not all the time. Glad I came across Helena here – heading over to her blog to read more.

  29. Great post, thanks for sharing with such honesty. I am one if those people who always wanted to be a mother- always loved babsitting, played with dolls way longer than I should have, but now that I am a mom to 5 agree that this is hard and often am jealous of how easy it is for my friends and family w/o kids or at least w/o twins!

  30. Love, love, love this! The funny thing is, I never suffered from PPD, but I can relate to so much – the hideous sleep deprivation, the resentment, blahblahblah. The women who love EVERY moment? Be scared of them. Very scared.

  31. Leighann says:

    Thank you for this honest post!!
    PPD sucks. It's lonely and suffocating.
    Thankfully there are blogs and supports for women who suffer so we don't have to feel this way.
    This post is wonderful

  32. Twinpossible says:

    Hey sweetie. I didn't even know you also endured a long struggle with infertility. That is a horrible and grueling journey, and YES every single woman on the planet was pregnant when we were trying to, and every friend I had.

    I was pissed and bitchy all of the time, and though I felt blessed with my 5 yo, I was feeling cursed at 1st to be having twins, despite trying again for such a long, long time. I didn't want two. I was the freak. Nobody else was pregnant with two, why me? I had only wanted one more, why was God doing this to ME? Now I have no regrets but I do some days wonder how easy it would be to just have one…especially Allie. An utter walk in the park.

    There was something you loved about motherhood to go back and do it again with the second set, or were they God's little HAHA? I think God does do a lot of ha ha's on our behalf, and that is why I can so relate to your blog and the title of it. My life has been FULL of jokes on me.

    Don't feel bad or guilty for how you feel. Feel how you feel, express it, so you can move on from it, and get it off of your chest. It's a great feeling.

    Now, I betya your friends who were adoring motherhood every single second, were not mothers of more then one baby at a time, which gave them more free time to think clearly, more time to sleep, more time with their husbands, and other kids….and the list goes on. You really can't compare the two, much less two sets of twins.

    All I wonder now, is during my 8 years combined of TTC…where the f^ck are all the pregnant women now? They have all vanished. It's insane!!! I look but I hardly ever see a one, though everyone was pregnant back then, and their mothers. WACKY!

    Great post honey. Realx..you are not a monster, you are 100% human!

    Shelly

    http://www.twinpossible.com/blog

  33. Nicely put! I don't think the sun rises and sets on my dudes either. But I DO enjoy them…and somedays I can't wait until they are gone. I know. I know…horrible lady….but it's true! Think of all the less I will have….less mess, less meals to make, less laundry. Sounds pretty good.

  34. That is why I love Helene! Super honest, and funny at the same time!

  35. tooclosetogether says:

    LOVE this post!!! I feel like I'm surrounded by women who find every moment of motherhood amazing while I'm left standing there with vomit oozing on my shirt, poop down my leg, holding a screaming toddler while very pregnant going WTF?!?!?!

    Thank you for your honesty! Makes people like me feel a little sane :)

  36. I love Helene and think she is an incredible mom. I have been reading her blog forever. What a great resource she is for other moms who struggle after childbirth.

  37. Elaine A. says:

    I completely appreciate your honesty! I'm not always in love with it either, especially since my 3 year old has been up EVERY frakin' night lately with the need to pee or already having PEED his bed. Fabulous. It's hard, no denying that. Thanks for this.

  38. Semi-Slacker Mom says:

    I love me some Helene!!! Great post, thanks for saying what we all were thinking. And that chick that said she loved EVERYTHING about being a mother was LYING!

  39. This is why I love Helene. Always so real.
    Motherhood is a love/hate thing. You love it. You hate it. All within the same second.

  40. Found you from Helene's blog and I'm so glad I did! You are hilarious!! :) After looking around your blog, I realize that although I don't have twins…and my babies are teenagers now…we still have MUCH in common because we are moms!
    I can remember my monster MOMMY moments very well which have grown up to be monster MOM moments now. (Since that's what the kiddos call me!) Life with teenagers is nothing if not intersting.
    I see you have a ton of followers…but I'm adding myself to the list. I enjoyed you too much not to come back. :)