I have learned that parenting can be a roller coaster ride. Our lives were already jam-packed before we became parents. Our jobs were demanding, we had family obligations, and we had full social lives. We also managed to work out regularly. We had it all!
After our daughter was born, somehow our lives grew to accommodate her little life and all of her things. And we did it gladly. It still amazes me how someone so small has completely transformed our lives and demands so much attention.
Our lives did not slow down with our parenting obligations.
The thing the rest of our lives did not slow down because our responsibilities increased. Indeed, from a family responsibility perspective, Andre has actually undertaken more projects at his parents house than he did before we had our daughter, I have gotten promoted at work, and our social obligations remain. Truthfully, we have cut back considerably on the social obligations and the working out, but the bathroom still needs to get cleaned, the floors still need to get vacuumed and the dishes still need to get washed. Figuring out how to do it all can get overwhelming. Sometimes I scream, shout and throw a fit. I never turn to drugs to manage my stress, but apparently a lot of mothers do.
I have never relied on drugs to help me manage my life. I don't say that with any pride or sense of superiority. It's just a fact. Indeed, I never even thought about going to the doctor to give me something to help my life go down a little easier. However, I have experienced challenges, lots of them. In the first few weeks of my daughter life I was obsessed about the state of the world and the potential dangers. I also had thoughts about our mortality and the afterlife that I just couldn't shake. Those thoughts along with my new responsibilities seemed like a lot of pressure. Still, I didn't think about getting drugs mainly because I was breastfeeding and who wants a drugged up baby!
I tried to manage my thoughts and responsibilities by watching television--movies not news--and talking to my mommy friends. I learned that they had weird thoughts too. So, I felt like I was in the club!
Apparently, other moms are using pharmaceuticals to help them during the early days of motherhood and beyond. Recently, "Parenting Magazine" published a piece entitled, "Xanax Makes Me a Better Mom" and that piece has resulted in a firestorm of responses.
Although I did not rely on drugs, I am sensitive to the feelings of moms who have and respect people to get what they need to make their lives work.
What are your thoughts? Is this the new mommy war, "sober parenting" v. "enhanced parenting"???