“I will put my hand up and say it.”
As parents, and in particular as mothers, we go through the full spectrum of emotions on an almost daily basis. We are anxious about everything, we beam with pride at tiny milestones, we laugh with our little people and we cry with them too.
Today for the first time, I truly felt as though I had failed in my duty as a mother. I have tearfully just put down the phone after talking to a Mother and Baby Unit, more commonly referred to as sleep school.
That’s right, I will put my hand up and say it. I just can’t face the nights anymore. I can no longer battle my sweet little lady for three exhausting hours to shut her beautiful brown eyes and sleep. I can’t fathom another evening, sitting on the couch not daring to move a muscle for fear I will wake her from her slumber. The rocking, the shushing, the patting and the frustration – I’m just done.
My breaking point came several weeks ago when I urged my partner to return home early one Saturday evening. I picked him up, tears running down my face with our screaming child in the back seat as I sobbed that I was afraid I would hurt our daughter. She had defeated me with the most brutal weapon in her possession.
I’m scared to tell my mummy friends in fear that they will think less of me. I worry that they will talk amongst each other with pity in their voices discussing how I can’t cope. Sometimes I take my daughter to my mother-in-law’s and leave her there for the night so I can sleep a full 10 hours. That’s our secret too. What would people think of me? I can’t even look after my own baby.
Everything you might be thinking or saying about me I have said to myself (and worse). That I’m spoilt, that I need to suck it up, that I don’t even have it that bad, that my baby is going to be subjected to controlled crying.