I was browsing the library during a break yesterday and came across a series of books exploring the philosophical representations of the Seven Deadly Sins.
For me, it is easy to see how the Seven Deadly Sins run rampant in my life. And so I have decided to explore the idea of the Seven Deadly Sins and how I am guilty of each of them in relation to my imperfect mothering. Additionally, it occurred to me just how much a role all of these things appear to play in my current mental state, which is not good.
The easiest one for me is where I am starting. But I intend to explore them all in more or less depth in the weeks to come.
Envy - The desire for others' traits, status, abilities, or situation.
I have a serious ENVY problem. Not that I don’t have enough in my life. I do. I have a roof over my head, a warm bed to sleep in and a child who is healthy and functioning. I have a lot to be grateful for and a lot that other people would love to have.
I ENVY “normal” mothers. Now, before you go yelling at me about how “normal” is subjective, hear me out. I have zero desire to be one of the supermoms. I have accepted the part of myself that just doesn’t care about having a spotless house and hosting 8 playdates a month and likes to do fantastical crafts that end up in the pages of Martha Stewart Living. I truly don’t think those mothers are the normal (and perhaps they are slightly insane) and so that isn’t what I am talking about.
I ENVY normal mothers. I want to be normal, in that I don’t feel like I am drowning in my own self-absorbed misery all the time. I want to wake up feeling like I can face the day without collapsing from exhaustion before dinner. I want to not snap at my kid when she’s doing normal (annoying) three year old stuff. I want to not lose my temper and break down into crying jags over spilled chocolate milk on a blanket that can be simply thrown into the wash. I want to not feel like I have to pep talk myself just to take a shower. I want to care that my legs haven’t been shaved in months and that my hair hasn’t been out of a ponytail since 2007. I want to actually have some desire to play with Lila, even when I really just sit there and let her orchestrate whatever activity we’re supposed to be doing. I want to not feel like grocery shopping takes so much energy that I literally need a nap when I come home. I want to not have to fake migraines so that I can hide in my bed as soon as her father gets home. I want to be able to do more than one thing in a given day. I want my kid to think I am okay and not to worry about whether she has done something to make me feel sad all the time.
I know that other moms out there can do these things, and that they only feel that way when they have the flu and even then they manage to at least make dinner. I have seen them and heard from them in their comments on my blog. I ENVY that they can do all these things and I have been unable to find anything that helps to pull me out of this for more than a few weeks at a time. I ENVY that their kids seem happy and look well-rested. I ENVY that they don’t have dark circles under their eyes after getting a full night’s sleep. Hell, I ENVY the fact that they sleep!
I ENVY that they know how to do a time out. I ENVY that their kids go to bed without them and without having to be told 400 times to stay still and go to sleep. I ENVY that they don’t worry excessively that they their children are going to be fucked up and insane because everyone in their families is. I ENVY that they manage to function.