I’m touched out. Touched. Out. But that’s #momlife for you.
What does it mean to be “touched out?” Basically, it means that you are feeling emotionally and physically D-O-N-E with being touched by another creature. And it happens a lot when you have little kids (and needy cats) (and here is the moment my cat pushes “publish” prematurely).
I know there are about a million parenting blogs that talk about being grateful for the snuggles and not knowing when will be the last time you pick them up or they sleep on your chest, but here’s the thing: I’m a human. And though I will surely miss the baby days (heck, I already do with EV), I can’t help feeling over-stimulated by human contact from time to time. Especially when that human contact is a 19-month-old, tantruming, desperately-needs-her-nails-trimmed little snot machine. I know it doesn’t seem loving to describe my beautiful daughter that way, but, well, tell that to the scratches on my chest.
It’s not been easy. But please, don’t just listen to my whining. That’s not where it starts and begins. It’s just part of it, and honestly, it’s not the hardest part. The hardest part is loving them so gosh darn much. I’m serious. I don’t feel guilty for putting up with their toughest moods, or for losing sleep, or for those miserable half-breastfed dirty diapers. It might not be a blast all the time, but the worst part is the guilt you get because you love them.
Guilt for wanting to be in another room when they scream. Guilt for wishing you could finish a movie without pausing two dozen times. Guilt for missing those nights when you could just spontaneously eat at a restaurant or get a drink without the less-than-compliant child or a babysitter’s fee. Guilt for putting Curious George on for the fifth time today. Guilt for writing this blog while Curious George is on.
Guilt for feeling touched out.
You feel it because you love them so achingly much. I guess in that way, the guilt is a good thing. At least you know you love them, even if you aren’t so sunshiney all the time. Even the bible says that guilt reveals to us that there is truth to be found in a higher place. Take that guilt, and figure out how to make it go away!
Even if it’s just to give yourself a break for being human and not able to do everything at once a hundred percent of the time.
It’s ok to be touched out, y’all.
Anyway, here’s the scoop on these last couple weeks. They’re pretty life-y!
Samson is nearly 8-weeks-old! It’s crazy!
Also, EV. She’s crazy too! (I say that with pure love and wobbly conviction. It’s been a hard time for us all.) But if I’m not proud of her ability to stack blocks and cat food cans, I don’t know what I am!
Seriously! That tower is taller than she is!
I’ve been spending a lot of time cuddling the two of them. Especially since Jimmy came down with something and we’ve been trying to be careful keeping them from him, which means… you guessed it! I’ve been the go-to gal.
So yeah. I’ve been really touched out lately. But I know that God is giving me what I need. Call it resolve, short breaks, Jane Austen movie adaptations, whatever form it’s come in, I’m doing fine. Oh, and it’s a good thing God knows the future, because the same day Jimmy came home feeling ill, some of my friends had come to babysit EV for me. No reason, just because they thought I could use the help. Turns out that it would be the only break I got that wasn’t sleeping for the next few days. God is good!
Sam is amazing. He’s been rolling over since he was 4 weeks! He has awesome head control, his leg muscles are really strong, he manipulates toys already, and he actually imitated my waving to him. No joke! He’s working on those motor skills like nobody’s business!
He’s also starting to resemble me a lot more. But he still looks like a mini-Jimmy with a Moriah head, ha! He’s got HUGE EYES! He often looks verrrrry surprised. Not sure what color his eyes are yet, they’re still mostly dark grey, maybe a little brown or green. It’s hard to tell. But those lashes! Gosh, he’s such a cutie!
And in the last couple weeks, he’s taken to cooing and smiling! It’s so amazing. I’m experiencing all this for the second time, and it’s still exciting. I love being a mom.
Well, not all the time.
EV has been tantruming a ton lately. It’s been so hard. Her sleep regressed, so she’s not staying the entire night in her room anymore. And she nurses way more now that my milk is back. Also, she frequently has teething pain. And she nursed so much more than she used to. She has been so demanding. But again, that stuff doesn’t make me regret having kids. Actually, nothing makes me regret it. But some stuff is really hard.
At the Target parking lot the other day, EV was throwing a fit. It wasn’t totally her fault, she was tired and we kept her out late, but a guy asked us if we regretted having kids.
Without missing a beat, Jimmy said, “Not at all!”
And that’s when I realized what I’ve been talking about. It’s not the super tantrums or the loss of sleep that make parenting difficult. I mean, it’s not easy or desirable, but the hardest part about parenting, the piece that should give you pause when deciding to be a parent, is the sacrifice of the small things. That’s what gets annoying. You can be fed up with a screaming kid guilt-free, but when you’re fed up with your wonderful child needing to be home when you’d rather go see a movie, that’s tough. I mean, not the same kind of “tough” as other really hard things, but you are attached to your children forever and ever after they get here, and there are times you think you’d like to go back, but you can’t, but you don’t really want to and you feel guilty for thinking you did.
Basically having kids turns you crazy, but in a socially acceptable way.
I would NEVER want my children to think I don’t want to hug or kiss them when they feel they need it. But, I might think so or even say so sometimes. Like now. When I’m touched out. I have to learn how to be loving even when I don’t want their affection, and they have to learn how to respect other people’s boundaries. And sometimes it sucks in either direction, because that’s how you learn, folks.
Maybe that doesn’t make sense to everyone, but to those parents who do get it, seek the answer to your guilt from Jesus. He’s got it covered. It’s okay to feel touched out, but the real question is, what are you going to do about it?
I know the non-specific answer is to love them. And that’s the one way us parents will always be in agreement!