life on the "j" train

Taking a "busy working mom with 2 special needs kids" life one moment at a time

Moms Back To School Burn Out September 22, 2015

The kids have handled going back to school like champs.

Me?  I’m already burnt out.

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Every day I have big plans for the evening and every night I lay in bed wondering where it all went wrong.

The main issues – I think – Are that the kids bed times have moved up a little earlier so there’s less time to get things done and there’s more to do.  It all leaves me frazzled and stressed out.  I’m yelling too much and not smiling enough.

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I hate it.

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Maybe I need to put less pressure on myself and lower my expectations.  But how?  There are things that need to be done.

Granted, some days are worse than others but often, I feel very ill-equipped to manage everything.

Every day there are (lots of) things left undone.  I feel badly about all of them but the worst is when I realize after the kids are already in bed that their homework was not in fact completed.  The problem with that is 2 fold.  First of all, homework is important and it helps with learning and it’s a valuable component in the kids education.  Second of all, it shows teachers that you, the parent, are not on top of things.  That’s not a good look.  Especially this early in the year.

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No-one can see that I’ve had the pieces of a bookshelf leaned up on the wall in my bedroom for months with the intention of putting it together.

No-one can see the bags of un-put-away laundry in my hallway.

No-one can see that we haven’t been able to find the TV remote for over a week.

No-one knows that the giant plastic container in my living room is full of supplies from when we went camping – In early August – That still need to be put away.

But the undone homework or un-signed papers … That, people can see.

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I try to catch up on sleep on the weekends.  I think that would help both my productivity and my mood, but that’s only partially successful.  There’s not a lot of time for sleeping in.

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It’s not all bad.

We didn’t get home until after 8pm so that killed the entire evening BUT, I did make it to both kids back to school nights – In 2 different schools – On the same night – And they went well.  The teachers are all happy with the start the kids are off to.  That was welcome news.  From what I hear, Ace is doing a decent job of staying focused and behaving appropriately.  Jay also is coping well with being in a mainstream class.

I managed to go through the kids clothes and take out all the size 5’s and 6’s to give away.  I even went through and put away a tub of clothes that had been handed down to us that were too big at the time.  They now will be perfect for the upcoming winter.

Oh and this week I cleaned out the cat’s litter box once already – while I listened to Jay read about Dinosaurs.

Every day the kids get to school on time, with their lunch boxes carefully packed and (thanks to some help) their uniforms clean and pressed.

I feel good about those things.

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There is still a sink full of dishes and the bathtub that should have been cleaned over the weekend still needs scrubbing.

But I’m not worrying about it.  I JUST CAN’T.

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I recognize that I need to make some changes though.  The way things have been going is not OK.

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Each day I will set myself just 1 or 2 achievable goals; in addition to focusing properly on homework.  No more planning to get it all done.  That just leaves me feeling defeated instead of accomplished.

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Todays task is to look for the remote which I’m sure is stuck in the crease of the couch.  I will also wash dishes and clean the bathtub.  I know that’s 3 things, but think it’s do-able.

Another day, I will tackle the bookshelf or the sticky kitchen floor.  It is what it is.

I don’t like putting the kids to bed when I am angry which is what’s been happening.  Time to shift my attitude.

Going forward things will be different.  This is my pledge to myself – and to my boys who deserve better from me.

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4 Responses to “Moms Back To School Burn Out”

  1. NickyB. Says:

    I wish that I could send you a picture of my kitchen lol! I have settled in my mind that I just can’t possibly keep up with something. I hate it too because I was raised to be soooooooooooo neat and clean! My mother would throw a fit if things weren’t clean…But I am trying really hard to let things go so that I am not stressed out. Take it one day at a time.

    • Thanks so much for that! It feels good to know I’m not the only one. I too, was raised in an immaculate house. And I do love when my own house is neat and clean. It’s just so hard to do it all.

  2. Deb Says:

    You are SO not alone. Change a few details and I basically could’ve written this. It’s so true that it’s better to set just a few goals or you set yourself up for defeat. Hang in there! We can do this, step by step, little by little.

  3. therocchronicles Says:

    You are a busy mom! Cut yourself some slack and remember–what your boys are going to remember is a mom who made their lunches, went to their open houses, listened to them read, took them camping! Not a bathtub that was a week overdue on scrubbing or a sink of dishes. You are doing great!


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