Today was a hard day.
Nothing went how I imagined it would go. I had all these plans and lists of to-dos. Errands, cleaning, preparing for upcoming trips, writing. But I certainly didn’t think I would be writing about this.
Hadleigh, my almost 12 month old daughter, had other plans. She really struggled with her naps. This may sound silly to you, but when naps don’t go well, the day normally doesn’t go well either. I knew after spending an hour and a half trying to put her down for her morning nap that it would be a rough day.
Maybe I shouldn’t have thought that or put that energy out there. But I was so emotionally drained from trying to get her to fall asleep, my negative thoughts consumed me. She is typically a fairly good napper and putting her down doesn’t usually take long.
My mind raced, thinking of why she was struggling so much. She is getting four upper teeth all at once, so I tried everything to remedy any teething pains. I fed her, rocked her, sang to her. I let her cry for a little by herself. I changed positions while holding her. I tried everything and nothing was working.
Then I finally rocked her to sleep. I carefully tiptoed out of her room, trying my hardest not to make a peep. I sat on my couch with the monitor sitting beside me. I felt myself relax.
Then 15 minutes went by and she was up! I waited for a little, hoping she would put herself back to sleep but she eventually stood up and screamed for me. So, that was nap attempt number one.
The entire day was completely thrown off after that. Her fussiness and neediness was something I hadn’t experienced since she was about 5 months old. I was so used to our routine and she is typically an easy baby to please.
But not without sleep! Her afternoon nap was no different. My heart ached because I knew she needed to sleep but I was also so frustrated that she wouldn’t. Or couldn’t.
It’s so hard to put yourself in your baby’s shoes. All you can think about is how much time you’ve been sitting here rocking her. You feel like it is all wasted time.
It’s hard to empathize with your baby. Yes, I was exhausted from trying to get her to sleep, but imagine how tired she must have felt. She was hurting, but in the heat of the moment I was unable to see that.
Now that the day has ended, I’m sitting here with my glass of red, my husband is (attempting) to put our daughter to sleep, and I am able to see clearer as I reflect on the day. The hours spent rocking my daughter, trying to soothe her and the feelings of frustration were all a lesson. It wasn’t a waste of time.
I’ve written before about how to become more patient as a mom, but I am still no pro by any means. I prayed a lot today, counted to 10 about a thousand times, listened to meditation music, took deep breaths…but I still faltered. I still became overwhelmed and irritated because my selfishness got in the way. I felt like I needed to check off all of these things on my to-do list, but the only important task on my to-do list is being a mom.
So, if you are like me and had a rough day. If you feel like you didn’t accomplish one thing. You did.
You accomplished being a mom today.
It might not have been as graceful as you hoped, it might have been hard and draining, but you got through it!
So, if you had a hard day, tomorrow will be better. You got this mama.