Now, a party still means a chance to dress up. If I have time to find a new dress that would be nice, otherwise I have to make do with what I've got. Finding a dress is a pain, because nothing looks good anymore. My shoes have to be practical, so no more killer heels. Clothes need to be practical, so nothing strapless (in case kids pull it down) and nothing too short (don't wanna show the world my hoo-haa when I have to bend to attend to kids now, do I?). It means a baby bag packed with food, spare nappies, wipes, bottle of milk, water, etc., a blanky for the little man and a blanky for the baby miss. I need to get four children ready to go as well as myself, so only 30 minutes in the bathroom if I'm lucky.
It means arranging for baby sitting, so we need to leave extra early to drop off the little one. If we choose to bring him, it means attending to my son on arrival, instead of mingling with other guests. It means sitting in one spot (by the front door) to watch my little man because he refuses to go passed the foyer into the house. It means having mini heart attacks every time that front door opens to allow guests in , in case my little man escapes. If I choose to have him stay at grandma's while the rest of us are out, it means I think about whether grandma is coping the whole night, and wondering whether he is eating/sleeping/cooperating with her. It means you dread the phone-call that inevitably comes - he won't eat, and we can't get him to sleep....What do you want us to do with him?
It means pestering your partner to go home when they don't want to (and deep down, neither do I). It means going home early to collect the little ones, (come on, seriously, how late do you expect grandma to wait up for us to come and get them, after all?). It means helping two tired and grumpy older children get ready for bed, and then settling the two babies to bed. I have to wait for them to fall asleep before I can go to bed - luckily that doesn't take long. It means I'm still up during the night to check on them, and there is definitely no sleeping in in the morning. Children are tired and grumpy all the next day and so am I.
Parties are not fun anymore. I don't dance, I don't even know what to do with myself half the time..... I'm not used to being out for fun. I feel unattractive and boring (despite the many compliments I may actually get - I know it's stupid, but that's how I feel). I spend the night worrying about how I look, and if my children are ok, and if the people minding my children are ok, and if I will cause an argument if I tell the hubby we need to go home. I should be able to feel great afterwards, but all I usually want to do is cry.
Sometimes, I think I should just give up on life - not life in general, but life as in, fun - laughter - love - friendships - life. Once I give out what life is mine for my family, there is nothing left for me to enjoy. I wonder what is the point of trying when things end up like they do.
.....I realise this is a bitter post and maybe I should apologise, but honestly, this is a glimpse into a deeper me, at times when I am not so positive. You are lucky to be seeing it. I don't regret my children or my family - I love them to death. But that doesn't mean I am happy and positive and fulfilled all the time. The rewards of motherhood are years in coming, and those years haven't come for me yet. I'm so afraid that when they do, I will be too old and ugly to enjoy my life. I feel like the 'me' in me is wasting away. I have become my family and my family is now me. The question I always end up asking myself at times like this is; who am I when I stand alone?