It’s that time of the month. Or the week. The one where my balls are smashed all over the floor and I’m trying to keep juggling while looking for the dustpan and brush to sweep up the mess and trying to make sure the kids don’t walk over the broken glass.
Oh shit, the dog has just taken one of my dropped balls and run off with it. Help.
How is YOUR WEEK GOING? Sometimes I feel like it helps to talk about it. Just to hear yourself say “I’m not coping today!”. Usually the feeling passes pretty quickly. I sent my husband 11 texts yesterday when I got home describing my dropped balls in florid detail. Kids crying, lunch orders being forgotten, homework overwhelming, me late to pick them up from after-care, work needing more attention than I could give it, EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE needing more attention than I could give. Than I can give.
Feeling like a failure on every front. Luckily, I had arranged to have dinner with a girlfriend for her birthday and pizza and wine and connecting with a friend always shifts my mood and energises me. So does texting my girlfriends to tell THEM I’m not coping and getting many entertaining texts back replete with anecdotes about how they’re not coping either. This helps.
I hate conversations about Having It All. I hate the very premise of it because it sounds greedy and entitled. And it's always used to describe family and career. And only ever about women. Nobody ever asks my husband if he thinks he can have it all. And if anyone did ask him, he would blink in confusion. He doesn't angst about having a family and a job. Neither of those things are negotiable. He just has them and does them and gets on with it. Guilt and feelings of failure and inadequacy just don't come into it.
Why would they?
He doesn't compare himself to anyone on Instagram or on Facebook or in a glossy magazine profile wearing a bikini while balancing a newborn in their arms and talking about how Paleo has changed their life.
It sounds blissfully simply being a bloke and I'm jealous because there's nothing simple about living in the head of any woman I know. I also resent the 'having it all question' because it's based on the premise that the Having-It-All-Prize is a big career and kids. This is not everyone's definition of success. What this is: an incredibly narrow and limiting definition of success that only serves to make most women feel inadequate. Oh look. I'm diving deep and getting my rant on.
Anyway. The sun is brighter today. The kids have stopped crying. Homework mostly got done. I ate pizza last night and drank wine and my friends cheered me up. And today I'm writing (this email to you) and writing is my favourite thing to do and when I feel most like myself. Now I just have to stop chewing my thumb and get my inbox to under 200.
Also, I'm going to a funeral this arvo of a friend who died suddenly and left 4 beautiful kids behind. That's enough to put all this stuff into the bin marked Stupid Things That Aren't Important In The Scheme Of Things.
This is an extract from Mia's weekly newsletter, which you can subscribe to here.
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