PANDA – I have nothing left to give

PANDA – I have nothing left to give

This week in Australia it is Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Australia Week (PANDA) and as such, I have seen many quotes and posts from their social pages. One post that really resonated with me is that I have nothing left to give.

My alcoholism has been a problem for a long time, but ever since I had my children, it went out of control. It became a way of self medicating, a way of escape, a way of dealing with the reality that my life had changed forever.

Today, I have a 4 and 2 year old ands I would have thought that life would have gotten easier, but that is so far from the truth. When I reflect back on my journey as a mother, I realise that the easiest part was the baby stage and yet at the time I thought it was so hard. Now, I spend my days dealing with attitudes, tantrums, bossiness, demands and so many other issues as we struggle to determine who has the power in our little family of 4.

Last night I was a broken woman, I went to put my 4 year old down for bed and she just started screaming that she wanted to be in Mummy’s bed. This screaming went on for over 2 hours, when my husband came home from work, he could literally hear her screaming from the side walk.

As he walked into the house he offered to take over, but it didn’t end there. She just kept screaming, I ‘locked’ myself in my bedroom and she would hunt me down and just bang on the door trying to get my attention. I couldn’t cope, it was like she was trying to torture me, trying to break me, trying to destroy every sense of my being. I resented her, I felt horrible because I couldn’t give into her, but at the same time I just wanted it to stop.

When it finally did stop and she surrendered to sleep, my husband asked me how I was, and I said broken and that I just wanted wine. He looked at my sympathetically but there was nothing that he could do.

The reality of being a mum is so much different to what I had envisaged. I often think back to those early parenting desires, I remember craving a little best friend, a little person who would love me unconditionally and who would stop me from being lonely. Now, all I want to do is be alone, I want to be lonely, I don’t want my personal space invaded, I am so sick of hearing the taunt of ‘Mum, Mum, Momma, Mummy’, it’s like the very name I wanted to be called grates on me.

I feel bad for feeling this way, I wish it wasn’t so, but this is my reality. I am going to be a mum for the rest of my life, this isn’t going to get easier, and I just need to learn to cope with this struggle away from my safety net of alcohol.

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