Updated: Jan 17, 2021
I am overstimulated by motherhood almost daily.
All day long I have an 18 month old tugging on my arms and legs demanding to be held or carried or comforted. I have a 9 year old needing to maintain her security in where she fits into this new world with a baby sister, requiring constant affirmation, random hugs, and cuddles. Then my husband comes home from work wanting physical affection or to just playfully hug and smother me with his love. It’s all wonderful and fulfilling and yet...
I’m completely touched out.
Please for the love of god can my body just be my own for 5 sacred minutes without the needs of someone else superseding my own???
That is a sign of being overstimulated from motherhood. I want my partner. I want my children. I also desperately need a sense of self.
As a mother you are the heart of the home and in many ways the command center. Your kids repeat your name on an endless loop from sunrise to sunset seeking guidance, asking for help, complaining, talking to talk, asking a zillion questions. Your partner talks over and around them, sometimes at the same time simply to be heard and sometimes in between the jabbering because that’s the only time they can get a word in edgewise. Either way you are the hub. Communication flows through you ceaselessly demanding decisions, responses, interactions. People are constantly talking at you and yet...
I am completely talked out.
Sweet silence consume me. If I could just have a moment to process a single fleeting thought in my own brain I’d be better equip to answer the 8,653 questions that have been posed to me over the past 30 seconds.
That is a sign of being overstimulated from motherhood. I adore my children’s curiosity for the world around them. I want to be the encyclopedia of answers they need. It’s wonderful to hear my spouses achievements or grievances of the day because it keeps us connected. I also crave the quiet moments when I am alone with my own thoughts.
Everywhere I look there’s a mess. Dishes piling up in the sink. Laundry piling up in the corner. Tripping over toys on the floor while trying to find out where that weird smell is coming from. In every direction there is a reminder that you just can’t keep up. That you aren’t managing this very well at all.
My environment is complete chaos.
How does one find peace in a place where a laundromat and a toy store have vomited up their contents into a 300 sq ft room and someone somehow believes that you are the anointed one to unravel this shit show???
That is a sign of being overstimulated from motherhood. How many loads of laundry I complete does not earn me a badge of honor. No one is keeping score but me.
What is the issue that lies beneath the surface of overstimulation?
Putting our own needs last.
When we do that we don’t feel appreciated because we aren’t being cared for the way we are caring for others.
I wish I could tell you I had some magic solution to these plagues of motherhood, but frankly I’m just in the trenches like you.
What I can tell you is that the days I own that and verbalize it the load feels a little less heavy.
Having good boundaries as a mother often feels like an impossible task, but is truly so necessary. There are times when I have to just hit the mute button on my daughter and ask my husband to give me some breathing room because what I need matters and if I don’t tell people what I need then they can’t be expected to guess.
Your children and your spouse can’t truly grasp what it asks of you to be the heartbeat of your family.
All they know is that they can’t live without you.
Being a mother and a wife are my favorite titles...but they’re also the most exhausting work I will likely ever do in this lifetime.
Can I get an amen???