Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Mama said knock you out.

Have you ever been at a cross roads in your life where you are just so confused by your own purpose that you feel as though you are constantly chasing your own tail?
That it's almost as though you have multiple personalities living in your head , constantly battling each other for precedence.
A boxing match of wills, each round won by a different side. Sometimes by technicalities, other times by obvious hits to the heart.
Willing a TKO to happen, almost praying for that hit, simply in order to have a clear direction to work toward.
An obvious path.
One without noise.
One without clutter.
No more confusion.
Just silence.
Peace within.

My head is so full of confusion, noise, fear, apprehension and anxiety about the unknown.
I feel as though I've gone a few rounds with Mike Tyson and I'm just shy of getting my ear bitten off.
In a matter of a week, just like a domino effect, life as I know it will change forever.
My eldest begins primary school. My babies will be attending pre-school and I will be returning to the job I loathe in order to provide for the little people I love. Time stands still for no man.

What is my role in life? I ask myself every day, if not every minute of every hour.
How can I live my life to best service my children?
Do I continue to chase a publishing pipe dream, or simply just get on with life, work for the money that we so desperately need and concentrate on being a good mother and wife?
The realisation that my children are growing at a weed's pace induces panic in my soul. I feel that I need to soak up every second of them while they are still young. Ingest every breathe they take, every milestone they achieve, every "Mummy, mummy!!" I hear.
While I still can. While they'll still allow me to.
Then I question whether I will in fact be doing them a disservice by dedicating my whole life to them. In turn inadvertently smothering them with my own inadequacies which will no doubt deem me obsolete once they are old enough to realise they don't need Mummy all that much anymore.
What will become of me then?
To be completely honest with you, at times I feel that this whole blogging thing can be a bit of a wank.
It can be seriously catty and the very reason I never participated in anything mother's group related in the "real world", the Australian "mummy blogging" circle, mimicking a virtual clique.
Popularity is fickle and loyalty is often transparent.
Few are genuine, but the ones who are, are truly lovely. This is what keeps me here and I thank you for your kindness and friendship.
So this is where I am, at this present point in time.
Do I continue to write about my dreams, my aspirations, knowing all the while it's a big waste of my time because I have no fucking idea how to make that happen (I need help!) - or do I step away from my computer, start living my reality and count the blessings that I actually do have?

Relish in mediocrity.
I often wonder why we are all on this holy grail of becoming "great". Of becoming over achievers. On this constant quest to improve on what we already are. Although for what, and by who's standards?
We put so much pressure on ourselves to be "better", "greater", "more successful" that we base our happiness on external measurements. The irony being that once we take the pressure off of ourselves and simplify our thoughts, our values, and our perception of what's important it in turn makes us happier and more fulfilled by default. If we place the same amount of energy cutting out the bullshit and chasing our inner happiness as we do chasing materialistic things and accolades from people who don't really matter - imagine how fulfilling life would be!
At the end of the day what's the fucking point of it all if you're miserable?

Why can't being a nurturing mother be the greatest achievement in life? Why is it that in this day in age, motherhood is still not perceived as the most important job in the history of mankind? One that needs the most dedication?  One where sculpting the minds of children to ensure they turn out to be happy, functioning adults is the only motivation, the only gain?
I understand that life is a gamble.
I understand that you must take risks.
I'm a big punter, usually.
Although at the moment I'm terrified.
I'm terrified of losing what is really important.
Time I'll never get back with the little people I love because for a moment I was confused about what was really important in life.

"A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has just wasted
thirty years of his life."


  1. Oh, sweetheart.
    You continue to touch my heart right when I need it the most.
    My oldest son just turned 18 and I was fine that whole day. People kept calling me asking me if I was freaking out and I was so confused. Why did everyone think I was going to freak out? It's almost like they wanted me to just to prove something to themselves.
    Then, later that night when he texted me from the bar, it hit me.
    This is the beginning of the end. This is it.
    And I FLIPPED! Totally cried my eyes out until 3am.

    You get so wrapped up in the happiness that you've created and then when you see it's leaving you're like, " No! Don't go! " not really understanding that there is more coming!! It's just different happiness!

  2. Oh, Romina, why can't mothering be enough? I am lucky that I can't seem to get my daughter into day care. The moment she gets a spot, I will have the pressure to return to work, too. Until then I have time to try and I'm desperately trying to find something more fulfilling than a boring office job, and something that brings in some cash. No luck yet... Follow your dreams I say. If blogging supports you in this, keep it up.

  3. Oh honey seriously?
    It must be really messing with you having such a hard time figuring out what path to take. I am very much the same yet cannot get a job outside my trade field. I do not want to work with hair anymore dammit!!
    I understand what you mean about being with your kids, seeing their milestones etc. at present that is what I take great joy in, but ultimately I miss working. I miss the adult chats and being me.
    Maybe you could get a part time job? Say weekends and a few days through the week?
    I've found as a mum that is the best happy medium. Take a chance, do what you want to do. If it stuffs up go back to what worked before.

    Regarding the blogging catfights, I just ignore it. Someone said to me years ago "any time you get a bunch of people in the same room (blogging sphere) shit will go up and down". I prefer to stick with the few awesome bloggers I chat to than get into who is or isnt doing what. Unfortunately some people never leave their high school mentality behind and for us who have, we need to say "Whatever!!" lol. Drama Llama!!

    Life sucks sometimes but we can do everything in our power to squeeze the hell out of it. Give it a shot

  4. Ooof. I'm sorry you're having a mini life crisis right now. I don't have good words of encouragement really (sorry) :(. Hang in there lady!

  5. Oh, Romina, I've been exactly where you are now, exactly. You have 4 young children and if it is indeed a choice between dedicating yourself to your children, and dedicating yourself to chasing your dreams, then choose your children. They will grow up (probably sooner than you want) and you will have time for pursuing your dreams once again. But perhaps it's not so much about choosing between the two, as it is about finding a balance. Your goal of being published is NOT a pipe dream, and I have every faith that you will find some way to make it happen.

  6. God, Romina, I can't say how this post has resonated with me so, you have this knack.

    Today has been one of those shockers for me personally, and I say I hear you in so many ways as I sit here enormous as a whale (with 7/8 weeks to go in my pregnancy).

    I feel I've entered a creative void and I don't know what my purpose is either. I miss writing but I have zero inspiration. Pregnancy puts me in this dull yet emotionally rocky state.

    I can say about yourself however, you have a gift and I think the precarious balance between all your gifts while your children are little is all you can hope for as a mama and a writer I think. It certainly isn't an exact science, when you find it let me know please?

  7. Oh Romina, I hope you can find what you're looking for. It is hard to put your energy into a job you hate, but on the flip side, it's providing for your little ones. Follow your dreams any way you can. Break out of the mould and be who you are meant to be!

  8. Some days you can read my mind. I have no idea but I keep searching... some days it IS enough to be the best mum I can be... some days though, it's not enough and I want to achieve something for ME, not just for others. But the fear and the endless circles in my head can be so overwhelming, and I can end up going around in circles so much I can't see the opportunities when they arrive.

    I'm taking one day, one step, at a time, lucky enough to have a part time job, doing something I know and enjoy (even if i don't totally love it). So at the moment I'm walking the fine line, balanced at the edge.

    Good luck, much love xx

  9. I dont want to be miss smart pants, but cant you change your job? Like really. I hate you to have a job that you hated for years and now returning there I cant even imagine what it is like. I mean I can. But I just dont want you to go back. I can see you doing smth you love with passion and what makes you happy and fulfils you instead of that. Call it quits! You can do it!

  10. First of all, OUTSTANDING title - loved it and LOVED this post. I felt as if we must share the same brain, or at the very least, a spookily similar train of thought. I battle these same demons daily - the whole chasing a dream can be draining and I sometimes wish I didnt have one, didnt have a passion and that it might make me appreciate all the blessings I already have bestowed upon me. Crazy I know, but there are times when an OFF button would come in quite handy :)

    As close as today I was overanalysing whether I could make a go of this publishing (pipe?) dream of be forced to search for work in the field I am qualified which bores me silly... So I hear you my friend, even if I have no sage advice (sorry!). I just wish you some sort of peace and clarity to come soon xx

  11. I think what you've said about happiness is true - it really can only come from within - but you have to be strong enough to ignore the outer distractions and maintain your focus on what is important for you. But you're not alone in asking these questions, and just voicing them here in your blog helps lots of other people too - that in itself is a greatness:)
    Thinking of you:)

  12. I think what you said about happiness is true - it has to come from within - but that also means you have to be strong and ignore all the outer distractions that life brings with it. Just voicing the questions you're asking yourself in such a public forum is something great - it helps others who are asking those same things:)
    Whenever I get to a point where I'm really not sure what's going to happen or where I should go, I take a book off my shelf and find a little space on my own to refocus - "Peace Is Every Step" by Thich Nhat Hanh... maybe you'd like it too:)
    Thinking of you:)

  13. I had making decision when I don't feel sure I am doing the right thing, good luck with figuring out what is the choice that is best for you and yours.
    Happiness. Go for happiness. Think about why you need the money, is it basic bills, extra-curriculum activities for the girls, holidays or just a buffer between you and that hard rock, reality? Is it for things you want more than the sound of your child's laughter, or things you need to ensure they have a good and healthy life, so they can laugh, even though you aren't there to enjoy it. (sobs)
    I only have one child, and I have thoroughly enjoyed staying home with her for her entire primary school years.
    Avoid Drama! Just walk away, it's not your problem.

  14. These big decisions scare me.
    It's like I'm standing in front of a number of doors and the host is saying "leeet's find out what was behind door number twooo!"
    I live in fear of letting something ideal sit undiscovered behind a door.

    I hope you find some clarity and contentment in the decisions you make, Romina.
    This year will be a big one in your household - and you are an amazing mother no matter what unfolds.
    :-) x

  15. "You took the words right out of my mouth...."
    Darling I felt like this was twilight zone for a second, also in reading the above comments. Hey, you're not alone in how you feel. The whole planet feels the same, with the exception of the Kardashians of course!!
    Being a mum is an amazing gift and achievement on its own merit. Motherhood/Parenthood to me cannot be compared to anything else, nogthing comes even close to it.
    It's important to have dreams, goals and hopes but it's also important not to lose sight of the little things in life that count. Sometimes when you stop searching you actually find what you're looking for - metaphorically speaking here ..nothing to do with the bloody keys I spent 3 hours looking for the other day and then voila`, right under my nose! Mmmhhhmmm .. was that supposed to be a message of some sort??
    Jokes aside, I think we all put so much pressure on ourselves and the world has become so competitive in every way. Time is rushing by us at the speed of light and we can't bloody catch up can we? 12 months ago I waited with trepidation for my eldest's first day at Kindy. Now I'm waiting with trepidation for her first day of Year 1. I blinked literally and a year has vanished. How damn scary is this!!!!???
    And don't get me started about work mate! (I faxed off an EOI for voluntary redundancy the other day by the way!!).
    Believe in yourself, have faith, take a deep breath and just enjoy the ride mate. Our little ones need us now. One day they'll grunt at us and cringe at any attempt at a cuddle or kiss from mummy. I want that day as far away as possible from now.
    Hey .. if it's any consolation we're supposedly looking at another GFC coming so ... we're all screwed!!
    I'll shut up now!

  16. I can't tell you how much I needed to read something like this today. I don't have the answers but, if I find them, I'll let you know.

    Meanwhile, just carry on being brave and strong and beautiful.

    Just carry on being you xx

  17. Well yes it is sad that motherhood is not considered by society to be as important as a 'career' but what matters is what you feel. You are obviously a wonderful caring mum and that is your main role but like you say unforunately you have to work at some shit job to ean a crust. I think you should chase the publishing dream but maybe try non fiction because at least that way you just write the proposal and then see if anyone bites rather than writing fiction which means you have to write the whole thing before anytone takes it on which can get very tedious indeed!

  18. Romina...I'm guessing your thought processes mirror the majority of the current western mummy population. It's a tough gig, highly under appreciated, not to mention lonely at times. I can tell that YOU value your role as a mum and I have no doubt that your kids are blossoming under your guidance so sometimes you have to forget about the rest of the world and just keep doing what you are doing. BUT...please don't give up on your personal dreams....not for a minute! Keep hold of your personal vision and start strategising...if you have to go back to a job you loathe then commit to doing one small thing each week to keep that vision alive.
    Never ever ever ever give up xx

  19. Crotchety old bastard that I am, one can't help but be moved by these words. I myself have only trite insight, despite having four offspring who range from 19 to 11 years. I've gotten the questions about how my kids getting older affects me, and I don't all together understand why it would, but I know that it does affect mothers differently from fathers, by and large.

    For me, what I'm doing is largely what makes me happy, because it makes me happy. Although if money were no option, I would certainly NOT be working...there's too much to do in the world for that!

    Parenthood is one of those things that encompasses (and eclipses) all other trades, careers, and jobs that there are to be had. Mentor, Teacher, Care-Giver, Chef, Chauffeur, Economist, Personal Trainer, Entertainer, Ombudsmen, Police / Detective, Librarian, Cleaner, Administrator, Protector, Professional Organizer, Fashion Consultant...you name it: it's part of the job that is a Parent. I'm not sure what it is in some people that don't understand this basic concept.

    But really, if you're not happy, no one else in your life or house will be happy either. It sounds to me, from just before Muhammad Ali's cameo, that you've got your answer, to a degree. And though you may put a dream on hold here and there, it NEVER pays to give up on them.

    I would suggest that we *should* put pressure on ourselves to be more successful, but we have to have a firm grasp on our own, personal definition of "successful" first.

    To be successful, you only need what you want. So the question then becomes: what do you want?

    Bear up; this storm shall pass, and if you find yourself in a harbor not to your liking, set sail again, having learned not necessarily what is in the harbor that will suit you, but at least what is in the harbor that will NOT suit you. Baby steps.

    Sorry I can't be of any real help, but from what little I've read, you're strong enough that you know what's what; if you didn't have this conflict that would be evidence to me that you were not.

  20. Here is a lighthearted award time for you...because I'm crafty like that. Seems wrong with all the soul searching you did today.


  21. Maybe because I came to mothering a bit late, I was 33 when I had my first, 39 when I had my last, I have always felt mothering was a genuine calling and one I was proud to do. I felt it was a choice I made, and I liked it a lot. In fact for the first time in my life I found my purpose. It's possible that the issues my children have faced, most seriously the special needs my daughter has had provided me with a bit of stimulation that I may not have found if things had gone according to plan. That said, this last year working on my blog and starting the process of becoming a writer has been incredible. At 46 it feels like my life is taking on a focus that it lacked for so long. I still have tons of unanswered questions, and I wonder how this road will turn into something that will bring money to the family, but I'm willing to ride it out a bit more. I always enjoy reading your honest posts on what it is like to be a woman, wife and mother is very confusing times! Much love to you!

  22. I cannot tell you how much all of your comments have touched my heart and really made a difference to me. I really value all of your insight and I thank you for taking the time to reply. I appreciate it so so much xx

  23. I glad I came over to visit today, it must be a bit of fate, I'm feeling confused as to who I am and dealing with others perception of who I am and how I contribute.
    Thankyou for the reality check.
    Now to get on with life and get my head in my space.

  24. Hi Romina, I am not a frequenter of blogs, I am however a first time mother with a baby 4 month old daughter. Today after it took over an hour to settle my baby, (and yet I continued being gentle and dear to her whilst my patience was wearing thin) it occurred to me that being a mother meant being a martyr...simple. I wondered if martyrhood was even a word and googled it coming up with your blog. Your latest post WAS ME, you wrote EVERYTHING that has ever gone on in my thoughts in the last few months. EVERYTHING. The piece about loyalty especially resonated with me. Uncanny. I should probably give up telling my husband about how i am feeling/what I am thinking at the end of the day and just print out one of your posts lol. Save me a bit of energy. How enticing that there is another woman thinking exactly the same thoughts as me out there...somewhere. x I hope we both find some answers!

  25. Being a mother should be appreciated more, for how could there be a more difficult task than raising a human being, body and soul? ;) However, there is even more to you than that, for we are not merely our roles. We are worthy and whole and beautiful apart from our roles, and maybe that's what we have always wanted to look for. ;)

  26. All life should be a balance and truly there is nothing more precious in life then our children. However are we not people? individuals with needs, dreams and desires. I yearn to write and publish, slow slow going due to time but I kinda dont worry because my kids come first and sadly like you I have to work. I enjoy the few precious moments when I can write and blog.