Sunday, February 11, 2007


So the diet thing? Not going so well. Want to know what I had for dinner tonight? A bowl of Doritos and a couple of Ring Dings. Lunch, you ask? Chinese food, leftover from last night. Breakfast was a couple of eggs and some bacon and toast.

I don't know why I can't do this. I have the best of intentions. For weeks, I ate egg white omlettes and carrots and fruit. And this last week, I've eaten crap. Crap, crap and more crap. And I feel horrible, so what do I do? Eat more crap.

I also bought a pack of cigarettes. *sigh* I haven't smoked in over three years. TCBIM and I got into a big fight the other night (another post, maybe) and I decided to take a walk. I walked right down to the convenience store and got a coffee and a pack of Parliaments. I only had three, but still. They're sitting there in the drawer and I know I'll probably have a couple tonight, after O and the baby go to bed.

I feel like I'm not being a very good mother, either. What the hell is it with that mother-guilt stuff? I feel like every other mother out there has their shit together, or at least more together than me. I don't take the girls out every day. I hate going out. I don't like seeing other people (because I feel like a fat slob) and I don't like the outdoors all that much, especially when it's cold out. I make myself go to play group and story time every week, but that's it. I go to the grocery store with them sometimes, but that's hardly educational or stimulating.

I let Boo watch too much TV. She's only 2, for god's sake. She shouldn't be watching so much. I should be playing with her some of that time. I do, I mean, we do play together and sing songs, but I need a break, too, some time to just sit on the couch while she putters around with Sesame Street going in the background. I always swore I wouldn't be one of those people who always had the TV on and guess what? It's always on. Always.

And let's not even get started on the state of my house. It's dirty. There are dust bunnies that could swallow a small dog. I swept the back hall for the first time in 6 weeks today. It was disgusting. Dis. Gus. Ting. My floors are gross. There is clutter everywhere.

I've been beating myself up about all of this for days. The voice in my head is vicious. It calls me names, names like fat and pig and disgusting. I don't need anyone else to tell me how awful I look, what a terrible mother I am, because I can do it to myself. I just feel like such a failure all the time, over everything I do. I can't seem to follow thru on anything, even on things that I really want, like losing weight. This sucks. Really sucks.

Why do I do this? Why do I do it to myself? I sabotage myself all the time. I second guess myself all the time. All the fucking time. I'm so sick of this. I'm so sick of beating myself up and making myself feel so bad. How do I shut off that damned voice? Because I'd like to fucking shoot it right now.

I hate this.


OhTheJoys said...

I don't have the right words... but I wanted you to know I'm reading and thinking of you...

Jess said...

J - Holy crap! That's a lot going on at once!

Give yourself a break, J. You're (effectively) a single parent (I'm not knocking TCBYM, but if he leaves before they wake up and gets home after they go to bed)to three girls. You're still nursing. The weather has been frightful. You're hunting for a job, which means everything about your life now will change.
Is there any reason you shouldn't be freaking out??

The girls know you love them. They do. And they WILL grow up to be wonderful, smart and socially adept girls, even if you don't drag them to playgroup every day.

I promise.

Thinking of you -

Scott K. Johnson said...

Hey Julia,

Sorry to hear that things are going a bit bumpy for you right now.

I don't have any magic solutions, but wanted you to know that I'm pulling for you and the family.

Sometimes what helps me is small steps. Just little things that build the momentum to keep making positive changes.

Take care.

If not a mother... said...

I don't know how to get anyone else out of a funk - I have enough trouble getting myself out. But once I do, everything starts falling into place. (And trust me, this week has been a huge difference from the last several.)

Small steps are the best way to get out of it. Shut off the TV for just a half hour tomorrow, eat one good meal tomorrow, those are small steps.

Christina said...

Don't let the mother-guilt get to you. There's no such thing as a perfect mother. I also let my daughter watch way too much TV, and she eats way too much fast food. Anyone who appears to have it all together is just faking it.

We all get down on ourselves sometimes. Take a deep breath, remind yourself that you're doing the best you can, and take it one day at a time. Things will get better.

Zazzy said...

I know that voice, I have my own. It has helped some that I understand the source of the voice. Some of the things I can laugh at, I know they aren't true. But there remain a few things, or one particular voice, that is known as "truth" in my head.

Something that strikes me, which may have nothing to do with you at all, but I'm just throwing it out there - is it feels like maybe you are trying to be perfect. The perfect mother, perfect dieter, perfect housekeeper - and since none of us can be perfect, maybe you stop trying because it feels so fruitless? Having goals and trying to do well is great. Trying to be perfect just depresses the hell out of me.

I hope things improve.

Lara said...

hey, J. i agree with scott and rachel - take it a step at a time. set one or two manageable goals for yourself, and let the other stuff fall into place later. something we say a lot in my school (because it's filled with perfectionists) is "progress, not perfection." anything - no matter how small - that gets you moving in the right direction, is a good thing.

and yes, the voice? she's awful. i have one of my own, and she is the world's harshest critic. i'd recommend finding someone you trust to go to when she's yelling, someone who can say, "nope, she's wrong, and here's why..." and tell you all the wonderful things about you. i know it's hard, but you can get through it. we're all here for you when you need to vent.

SUEB0B said...

You can talk back to the voices. Ask "What do you really want?" and see what they say.

I wake up at 3 am with those voices. Now I say "Oh, it is the 3 am fears," and go back to sleep. have dust bunnies AND a weight issue...we're going to have to take away your blogging license!!!! ROTFLMAO!!

LJ said...

I hate this too!!!!!!
I could have wrote this myself!
You're not alone.
Not that that's any consolation.

art-sweet said...

Hey wait - that's MY voice!

That voice? It's wrong. It's wrong when it talks to me. It's wrong when it talks to you. IT's just plain wrong.

I wish I could take some of these burdens off your shoulders.


Joke said...

I agree with the baby-steps comments.

Also, the cigarettes? SCARE THE $#!+ out of me. I've known enough people who died of lung cancer and emphysema and so on.

So, combining the two: Today's goal should be to pitch the cigarettes where they cannot be retrieved. (I advocate shred & flush)


Erica said...

Julia - in case you don't hear it enough, you are a GREAT mother. You have so much more on your plate than the average mom and you handle it with such grace. You have had and are about to have so much change in your life, this may just be your autopilot response to stress.

I don't know a single mother out there who doesn't have that 'voice' beat them up every now and then. It scares the hell out of me that I am responsible for raising children. I constantly wonder if I'm screwing them up somehow. But you can't dwell on it, you just have to take it day by day.


Anonymous said...

From what I've read you're a terrific mom. My kids are all in their 20's now, but I raised three as a single mom and I sure had a lot of the same feelings you have. Somehow you have to give yourself a break and not be so hard on yourself. Nursing also causes a lot of hormones, plus adjusting to another baby in the house, cold lousy weather and it all gets overwhelming. Hopefully as the sun starts to come out more you'll also feel better. If not, maybe talk to your doctor, maybe you're going through post partum blues and he/she can help you. Your girls love you and they know you love them. {{{hugs}}}Elizabeth

Anonymous said...

Best dieting advice I ever got (it worked but my motivation didn't, since I'm still packing too much on my 5'5" frame) was this: If you eat something you're not supposed to, just say oops and move on. If you have junk for lunch, eat a healthy dinner. If you eat Doritos for dinner, then tomorrow is another day. One slip up doesn't have to snow ball the whole diet to smithereens.

As for all the rest, I'm so there with you. Especially the mother guilt. Gabe asks for characters by name, and not from the books we read together. It's all from TV. Damned idiot box. Might as well be mind control.

You're a good mother, and a good wife. Your kids love you and your husband knows his world would be a shambles without you in it. But I know sometimes you need to hear it.



Angewl said...

You are a terrific mother. You have a crapload of stuff going on and you are dealing with the majority of it by yourself.

If you could see my house, you would think a lot better of yours. Crap everywhere.

I have been feeling really down a few days, more so than usual.

Does your voice sound vaguely like your mother or mother-in-law?? Just wondering.