When SuperMom Loses Her Super – Part 2

If you know me in real life, please understand that making this public is very hard for me and that I may not actually want to talk about this in person. You’re welcome to try to talk to me about it, but don’t be surprised or offended if I don’t respond in-depth.

If you’re just joining me, you can read part 1 here.

Twelve years into my marriage (2011), life seemed like it should be great. After all, I had everything I’d dreamed of my whole life. I was a work-at-home mom with a husband and children I dearly loved. I had two online businesses, taught piano, played and sang regularly for church, and did all the other requisite “mom” things. Until 2010, I also home schooled our three girls.

I cannot tell you how many people told me, both in person and online, “Wow! You are incredible! How do you do it all? You must be SuperMom!”

Whenever those comments would be made, I’d hastily point out that I don’t do it all, that I’m constantly juggling balls and waiting for the crash, and that, in fact, the SuperMom persona people applied to me was so totally not my reality. Inside, I constantly felt like I was holding on for dear life but that inevitably I’d have to let go and fall. I felt like I was a complete and utter failure, that no matter what I did, it was never good enough. That I could never live up to everyone’s expectations for me. That I was such a miserable human being that everyone (husband, kids, family, friends, clients, anyone who ever met me) must be disappointed in me and secretly scorn me for being such a failure.

Although my feelings were very dark, I thought they were normal feelings that everyone else experienced and lived with, too. I figured if everyone else in the world managed to push through the feelings of despair and failure, I should be able to as well. It didn’t matter that I’d felt that way since before I was a teenager. It didn’t matter that I’d often think everyone would be better off if I no longer existed to screw up their lives.

I hid my feelings with a smile and laughter, always trying to do better, be better, change myself – always trying to meet the expectations I believed I should be meeting.

Until the time came when my secret despair became more than I could handle.

Comments

  1. Please keep posting! You’ve heard me say before that I felt this way when I was 15 and couldn’t land my first job while my whole home life was crumbling. Well it returned in full force when I became pregnant with my first. I didn’t realize it and lost some friends because of it. It wasn’t until the third pregnancy I realized that each pregnancy would trigger my depression for the entire pregnancy. My depression was worse with each pregnancy as well. I chose to not try for my dream amount of children, but be satisfied with the three I was blessed with.
    My husband does not understand depression at all. He jokes about the idea. He is with those who mistakenly think it is just the power of thought that will make it go away. I thought that before experiencing it three times for 10 month stretches. I never experienced PPD because I experienced it the entire time before labor! I cannot put my family through it again and feel for those who have permanent depression. It is an awful, helpless feeling. This third time has been the hardest to shake for me and with no immediate support some days are not beautiful. I see the affects it has on my oldest. For that reason I am trying desperately to work through it. I forget the three types of depression but am thankful for coming across the book because it described what I was experiencing and gave me a compass to navigate through the darkness.

    • Hey, Sweetheart, I’ll definitely be posting more of my story. It’s an ongoing journey with new discoveries at every turn.

      I’m so sorry you’ve been in the pit and are struggling to get out now. It is hard when your loved ones don’t understand and make light of your problems. Praying that even though he doesn’t understand, Joe will support you and help you the best he can. You’re welcome to call/email me any time. I don’t have a number to reach you so can’t call you, but I want you to know I love you and understand your struggles. <3

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