Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Tired

This is a fridge magnet I picked up a while ago. At that time, I thought it was hilarious but now it rings a little too true to be funny any more. Because if there was one word that I would use to describe my mental and physical state of being at any time or day in the last few months, it would be tired...

I am tired of being the only responsible adult in the house and being the one who has to own all the to-do lists. I essentially have two choices - either do everything myself (exhausting) or endlessly nag the husband (equally, if not more, exhausting) to do stuff. A case in point is our recent endeavour to apply for a UK visa. The travel agent gave us a list of documents that needed to be submitted with the application. I had all my personal documents ready within three days after we got the list. For the next two weeks, I had to pester him with increasing shrillness before his passport appeared (it was languishing with the travel agent for god alone know how many months) and then another week before the payslips appeared, which were wrong and then had to be redone. And even after all this, when we submitted the applications, the visa guy pointed out that the payslips read January 2007 instead of 2008!

I am tired of being the one that Ayaan clings to every single minute that I am around. When I am home, he won’t let anyone do anything for him. And most of the time, I am quite happy to oblige. But sometimes, I just want to pull my hair and scream. ‘For goodness sake, give me a break!’. Especially when he won’t even let his father do something small like putting on his shoes when we are running late for school and I have to do other critical things like get dressed myself and make sure everything is there in his school bag.

I am tired because of Ayaan’s new school schedule. His playschool used to start only at eleven, so all I had to do was hang out with him, give him his milk, make him do potty, feed him his breakfast and have my bath – all over a leisurely (relatively speaking of course, because on an absolute scale there is nothing remotely leisurely about my time with Ayaan) two and a half hours before leaving for work. Now both us have to be out of the house at 8.40 (to become 8.15 in June!), fully fed and clothed. All this made even more challenging in the face of Ayaan’s non-cooperation – he drinks his milk with the speed of a wine connoisseur sampling a rare burgundy, dawdles over his potty (explaining it away with astute remarks like ‘my bum is full’), hates the idea of having his bath so early and when he does finally agree, he wants to chill in his rediscovered baby bath tub. When I look at all this in hindsight, it seems like a perfectly reasonable way for a toddler to behave but in the moment, it’s all I can do to grit my teeth and hold my peace with the clock ticking away in the background. It is highly stressful, to say the least!

I am tired of being busy almost every single moment of the day. The morning goes in the school drama, then there is work, then home to dinner, play time and bedtime with Ayaan. On the days I get back early, I like to go with him to the park as well. So, the time between his bedtime and mine is all that I get to put my feet up and do something for me – watch some TV, read a book, blog… And weekends get eaten up by grocery shopping and other sundry errands.

I am tired of not having the time and space for some of the smallest of things, things like an uninterrupted bath in solitude (instead of bathing to the accompaniment of instructions from a three-year old activities director), like being able to have a sensible conversation from home (without being interrupted by a tantrum), like the chance to do more glance at the morning headlines...

I am tired of feeling guilty about every free moment that I don’t spend with Ayaan. I even ditched the workout class after the full-time maid quit because Jai would find it hard to manage the mornings without me and if I do get back in time for the evening class, I have to contend with the guilt monster... even my salon time on the weekends is pencilled in during his nap times.

I am tired because I don’t want to give up the few islands of non-mommy fun that exist in my life. This often means late night partying with my friends from work. Since most of them don’t have kids, they have the weekends to themselves to recuperate and recover but I am back to mommydom the next morning, with a hangover and a sleep deficit that haunts me for days.

I am tired of being dissatisfied with the way my house looks these days. The part-time cleaning maid (hired since the full-time maid went off) is lazy and slip-shod in her work and since she comes while I am away at office, there is little that I can do to supervise or correct her. I take her to task on the weekends but it seems to be having little lasting impact on her. Also, Ayaan’s stuff ends up in every nook and cranny of the house and Jai will not pick up after himself after almost seven years of nagging after him to do so, and I really don’t have any residual time or energy to pick up after them. So I am learning to live with a less than perfect house, albeit with deep discontent.

I am tired of day trips for work. Before Ayaan, I would travel out the day before the meeting. And if I had to catch the early morning flight, I would have the next day to sleep in and recover. Now, I try and squeeze all my domestic trips into a day. And the next day, I have to drag myself out of bed and get on with life, often made harder by the fact that Jai travels out on the day after I get back – we do this to avoid there being any day when neither of us is around.

I am tired of feeling like a bad mom and wife. I am an impatient person with a temper that I often find hard to control. I am also a huge control freak and want everything to be just so. And given that Ayaan is a hyperactive and desructive brat and that Jai is often laidback and forgetful, it often seems to me that I have spent a large part of my day being a shrew, a person I myself wouldn’t have liked to spent the day with... It’s not a nice thought to go to bed with every night.

And now I am tired of thinking about how tired I am. I swear, I’ve yawned atleast 15 times while writing this... sorry if I made you yawn too with my whining...

54 comments:

  1. tweedle5:38 pm

    With you.

    Sometimes I can't believe I am the same 'cool', 'chilled-out' person I was back in college, neither can people who know me from back then. The person I am now frets so much and sweats so much the small stuff.

    It's tempting to give in at times and just let things be... and I do try and do exactly that, atleast i WANT to... but i guess my nonchalance chromosome has died a premature death.

    AND yes I am tired of being the only one who's trying to make the house a home, not just a bachelor's pad.

    Above all, I am tired of spoiling my own fun when the husband pampers me, sings to me, cuddles me and all similar romantic stuff, by losing my cool all too often, over supposedly non-consequential stuff.

    Sorry, I really don't have any solutions to give Rohini, just to say you're not alone.

    Maybe... you can try to let things be, atleast those that even you believe(in saner moments) do not matter. Try visualising the person you used to be (assuming you weren't always a 'shrew'... lol i loved that line) and see things from that person's perspective. It's much clearer then.

    Easier said. But it works. For atleast 15 minutes. (then the new person takes over)

    All the best. And hugs.

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  2. may i just copy and paste this on my blog? i want to say the same things and more, with photographs of how my home looks when i get back every evning. (just loaded them on my comp!!). infact i am dreading the day my kids will start school. I really don't want to pressurize them with the eat, shit, bath, go to school routine but can't avoid naa!

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  3. I hear you, sister! I was exactly like this a few years ago. I don't know what changed (apart from the fact that I started working and had a baby I yearned for) but now I am more at peace.

    I so identify with the control freak part but I am working (successfully) at getting my control issues under control. I can't give you and gyaan - you'd have to work out what works best for you, but I'm right here if you need to whine more. And I am a good listener.

    One thing that worked for our morning routine (ours used to be like yours - packed, and we needed to be out of the house by 8:10 at the latest) - we started giving S her daily bath at night. That single thing has made life so much easier and QUIETER (no more yelling in the mornings :D) for us. It was difficult coming to terms with the new routine because we grew up believing that baths/showers are an integral part of one's routine BEFORE starting the day. But it totally makes sense for young kids - they get their play time in the tub, we get a rush-free morning.

    You might already be doing that, but I have to ask - can you pack his bags at night? Take out his clothes and shoes and socks too. Actually, in the past when I was more organized and had these control issues, I used to hang 5 sets of outfits for S in her closet for the entire week. So I didn't have to go around hunting for them mid week.

    There was also a time when, if S lingered over her glass of milk, I'd pour the rest of it in a sippy cup and let her finish it on her way to school.

    Don't feel guilty over not spending every free moment with Ayaan - think of your time away as "recharging time" that would help you return to him refreshed and calm. He'd like that too. Sometimes kids pick up on our stress and act out.

    Sorry for the long comment - but just know that I am always here to listen to your rants. So feel free anytime you want to :P

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  4. Hi Rohini. I just want to say I enjoy your blog. We don't have children and yet our mornings are so much like yours. It doesn't matter how early we wake up. We always end up running out of the door with untied shoelaces, stuff hanging out of bags and wincing when we remember after reaching half the way to work that we've forgotten to turn off the central heating...again! You still manage to make time to update this lovely blog - I doff my hat! Cheers and keep the posts coming.

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  5. Man that just sounds so difficult, you make me ashamed of complaining about my life. It sounds like you really need a holiday, if only you didn't have to plan it...

    I hope things will be better as Ayaan gets more entrenched in his routine.

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  6. sending some hugs your way!

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  7. hey. if youre a mom.. it IS a full life. i dont think that will stop until they move out.

    i help out in the nursery in our church.. whew! those moms really need prizes!!

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  8. aww, Rohini, *hugs* go to bed now, don't be checking comments :)
    and hey I can identify with the morning rush thing totally - what works for us: 1, a quick shower, no bath; 2, if he lingers over milk, milk is swapped with juice which goes down in few gulps, and I compensate for it in the evening; 3, whatever breakfast goes in quickest is what is offered...may not be the most healthy option available.
    and despite this we're racing the clock all the time. can't help it.

    and admitting that you want to change the temper problem is a great first step, in my opinion. I have found that it works if I set it up as a challenge for myself. can I go for two full days without yelling? four? a week? and so on...it is an efficient way to replace all that guilt with pride.

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  9. I have days like that. God. Ad I don't have to travel for work. I have a loooong commute that gets to me. How about giving Aayan a bath in the evening? That alone cuts our morning craziness in half. How about, on some days atleast getting his milk in a spill proof cup and letting him drink it at his own pace in the car? I pack our lunches and mentally layout my clothes the evening before. Chip eats breakfast at glacial speeds too, so he is served a good 20 minutes while I am fixing our breakfast. Don't stress. I used to be a control freak too. The sink had to be sparkling clean and countertops shiny before I went to bed. These days, if I am tired, I don't do it. Pick you chores, like you pick your battles :)

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  10. hey ro, sorry you're having a rought time with things.
    as a control freak myself, sometimes, like dot mom said, you have to pick what's really important to you, and control it to your heart's content and learn to let go a little with others.
    hopefully, this is just a phase and you'll spring back soon enough.
    in the meantime, here's a hug and a prayer that things get easier.

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  11. [Tweedle] Thanks for taking the time to comment - it's the empathy that counts more than the solutions. And I think the person I was in college wouldn't want anything to do with the person I am today :D

    [Itchy] Ha ha! Maybe we should have a 'Who's got the messiest contest' in the blogworld...

    [Ceekay] With every word you say, you become more and more my role model! Can I come and sit at your feet and be your disciple?;)
    In this weather, we need to bathe twice a day in any case so the morning bath is a bit hard to do away with! Am doing the keeping clothes ready bit. Fortunately or unfortunately, the drive is just five minutes so can't do the milk in the car... I have been trying to sell myself the recharging theory for a while now but the guilt monster's not buying it.
    Thanks for your comment. I felt better just reading it...

    [45minutes] Ha! I thought my life was stressful before Ayaan too! Looking back, it seems so peaceful...

    [Veo] What I need is a holiday with some girlfriends. No husbands or kids. Just spas and shopping... sighhhhh

    [HillGrandmom] Thanks :)

    [Grafx] That's the scary part - that this is not a phase. My mum once told me that she felt tired everyday from when I was born to when I started college!

    [Kodi's Mom] Nice idea about setting targets on not losing one's cool... shall I try it

    [Dotmom] Have given up on the perfect house dream - just don't have the time and energy. But yet to start feeling zen about in :(

    [Mona] Trying... but in the moment, everything seems like it's important to control... wish there was a way to build hindsight into one's thoughts and actions...

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  12. Oh dear, and I thought there must be something wrong with me the way I was so impatient, and touchy about small isues and so totally a non-fun person. I SO hear you, Rohini, and I don't know how to make it any better.. HUGS to you. Hugs Hugs Hugs.

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  13. Hmmm , you could well be talking about my life . Hang in there !!! But the later in the day bath suggestion from someone was good - I tried and it worked although it took some work to convince the whole family that a quick freshen up in the morning will do just fine and he needs a bath when he returns since he gets grubby in school.

    You know , after I read yours and Mad Momma's posts about being tired, I think all mommys need alone time and to feel less responsible occasionally. And I think the only solution is for our husbands to pitch in more and make us feel less burdened ( of course, we will guilt trip on not having spent every free minute with our children, but who said women are easy to please !)

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  14. You definitely not alone.

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  15. check my latest post to see if u can top my messy house

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  16. God, I can relate to almost everything you wrote! I am as tired as you, and think it's unfair that it has to be this way. And the worst is that if you talk about it, you're told that you have all the comforts in the world so you should quit cribbing.

    Who ever said life was fair??

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  17. I NOW understand why you once said "give me pregnancy aches anyday in return for sleepless nights". Hugs to you:-0

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  18. You are working so hard and still berate yourself for being a bad wife and mother?!

    No. Stop doing that. I don't know how you can find more time and get everything done, but I do know that feeling guilty is not gonna help. Make Jai help out. I hope you can find a better maid. But above all, relax. Try and focus on the important things. The house not being tidy isn't important. Ayaan being happy and well-fed, is.

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  19. Oh boy. I'm not even working any more, and there are days when I still feel overwhelmed, so I can imagine how tired you must be, trying to do it all.

    I guess the key is not to (do it all, that is) but I know that's easier said than done.

    A suggestion on the morning routine - I had a similar problem getting Moppet ready for school in the mornings until I decided to skip her morning bath. She has a bath before bedtime, which helps her sleep better, and in the morning she just needs a wash to freshen up before we head out to school.

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  20. Hugs to you Rohini.
    hats off to you ...the way u juggle sooo many things and still stay sane.

    Control freak...me too!! but am trying to let go. no one ever died of a messy house....is what i tell myself.
    hope u can take a holiday soon!

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  21. I just so identify with being the only one who does everything.

    I recently had a very bitter and I guess the loudest fight ever with my beau about how I do everything, I plan the evenings out, I plan the vacations oh and the vacation means tickets, hotels, sight-seeing everything.

    But reading your post I guess I should be thankful. I (as yet) am only plagued by an laid back beau. I generally reach home by 7 from work as I stay right next to my office and I just sit and read, listen to music or go out for a movie after that as I have to leave home by 10 am next morning.

    Someday I must do a post on how easy my life is then :)I hope you have more power and zing to deal with everything fatafat and effortlessly :)

    If it helps I can ask my maid (she is super I've never had to supervise her I wake up in the morning laze around, water my plants, watch the news and chill as she is really efficient) to work for you provided the location suits her. Let me know if I can help on this.

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  22. You know, I keep hearing from everybody how lucky I am that V does so much. Yes, he does, but there are whole days in between when he does nothing at all. And at the end of the day, I'm always tired as well. He got his driving license renewed (four months after expiry!) only because his mother got hers done and took him along. He no longer has a passport. And those are the least of our problems.

    You want to run away for a mommy holiday somewhere? Let the men in our lives manage the best they can. Hell, I don't mind if they have a father-son holiday together. :) Let's run away, I tell you.

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  23. Someday I'll get here first and say something original instead of just repeating everyone else's (excellent) advice! Maybe when Hayden is older and I'm not so tired? ;)

    My only suggestion, really, is just don't beat yourself up over not doing EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME. It's not really worth it, in the end.

    Hang in there!

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  24. Rohini, you are already doing all that I suggested. You don't need a role model!

    I get the part about needing to bathe twice - thought of it as soon as I submitted my comment.

    As for Ayaan wanting you to do everyhting for him - can you maybe "disappear" a few times (when you guys have time)? Specially when he has to go out for a fun thing - so that he either has an option to let Jai help him or miss out on the fun. I know it sounds heartless, but it might work if you start it gradually on non-chaotic days. he will slowly get used to it.

    Or can you try telling him it hurts daddy's feelings when he doesn't let daddy help? Work out some negotiation - like if he lets daddy put on his shoes, you will help him carry his bag or something? NOT something material (candy etc.) but more time with you in some other way. Maybe a trip to the library over the weekend if he cooperates all week and gets to school in time?

    Another effective strategy might be to use charts recording positive behavior. I can send you one if you like. Just write down items that you need his co-operation on - drinking milk fast, not dilly-dallying in the tub in mornings, letting daddy (or someone else) help him get ready in the morning etc. Personally I never used charts like this (even though I did buy one for S) because we just never got around to it :D but I have seen them work for kids.

    I am sorry for asking this (I should already know!) but how old is Ayaan? Can you cut back on his afternoon nap and bump his bedtime back by half hour or one hour? When S was 3.5 years old, we weaned her off her afternoon nap, started sending her to bed at 7:30 and that improved our morning routine a whole lot because she woke up fresher. Of course, it varies from family to family.

    Can you sit down with Jai and discuss how all this is stressing you out. I am sure he will listen and understand. Maybe the "nagging" makes him tune out.

    As for you doing/ remembering everything - J would so identify with that! It is the opposite here - he remembers everything while I can't - not even to save my life :( We used to fight over this a lot because J would constantly nag me. Then I sat down with him and told him his nagging was doing me no good. Now we schedule "meetings" in outlook for everything he needs me to remember and I remember most of it! I still need about 4 reminders, but Outlook does it for me instead of J.

    I know it must be so taxing to have to do everything. Tell Jai you are going to leave a few things up to him, set up reminders for him in his Outlook (you guys must use it for work, right?) and then leave it to him. Even if he does something at the last minute, don't say anything. I am sure he will decide being stressed out about the deadlines is no good (like I did :P) and it is better to do these things right away.

    Sorry I sound so preachy. Your post rang so true - I have been through most of it and felt I could at least let you know how we coped. Might not work for you but it is another option at least.

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  25. damn, google ate up my comment!
    shall try again:

    wish we stayed close by. i could take ayaan for two evenings and you could go to the gym, you could take sanah for one evening and i could sit still(check my new post-great tips- to get what i mean).

    why two for one?
    because you have day long domestic trips to add to your already very very full day!

    take care...

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  26. Are you sure you weren't writing about me ??...but listen Ro, you have to chill, I know it's easier said than done but take a step back..all this stress will add up and in the long run translate into health concerns and things will just snowball. Write down abt things that add to your stress, see which you can do away with absolutely..like maybe take and give a shower in the evening? keep stuff that really matter as is..like taking ayan to the park but make a conscious effort at destressing and believe me sooner or later you will reach a happy medium.
    cheers!

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  27. Wonder what i'll be like when i grow up... probably more like jai than like you. my sympathies... time for yourself is important so try and take it, ok?

    seems like you're doing a great mommy job since A. wants to be with you all the time.

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  28. I don't know what to say, but give a biiiiiiggggg hug. It sounds exactly like what happens at our house...fortunately, I don't have a maid to add to my work load...I am shuddering at the thought of having to start working again.

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  29. Sounds all too familiar.

    I think it is part and parcel of being a mom with young children, and how we over-commit ourselves at that.

    I remember I used to be fun. What happened to that person?

    It is when I am feeling like that that I start to seriously re-evaluate my time commitments and other things that may need to be changed, too. So I understand how you feel. I hope you get some rest soon!

    Mwwaa!

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  30. Oh Ro, just read this and have to run. So am going to nag the aunt till she finds you a maid. Its hell, I can only imagine. Go take a nap at work.

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  31. I can't believe how many of us are in the same boat! I can't get over how your life sounds so similar to mine except I don't do travel. I cannot imagine how much more crazy I would get if I did it.

    I think the clinginess to the mother is because we do everything for them the way they like it done.

    Let me give you an example: Some weekend days I have slept in, and the hubby had woken up to "take care" of Poppin. 45 minutes later when I get up, what do I find? Poppin is still in her pyjamas, night diaper intact, has not brushed her teeth (and therefore not had her milk either)! The hubby? He's brushed, washed up, had his coffee AND breakfast.

    I wonder is he that dumb? Doesn't he know he has to take care of these basic things for a toddler? I can't believe he's a manager at work and can't know this. Well by the time I wake up, I have no time to even brush my teeth, because ofcourse Poppin is hungry and antsy. And so I rush like crazy doing all this stuff for her while the husband has now moved to the newspaper! If I criticize or "nag" then why, he did me a favor by letting me sleep in and I still dare to complain! Like this was a favor!

    As for the picking up, forget about it. When I was newly pregnant and nauseous, I went and stayed with my mom for about 6 weeks. When I come back home, I came back home to see 4 weeks of laundry lying unfolded all over the house. I mean who lives like that? It's disgusting and weird especially given that his personal hygiene is really good.

    It's not that he's deliberately mean or unhelpful, it's unexplainable. It's like he doesn't even notice how harassed I am.

    I wrote about the husband not helping much before too, and I got a lot of advice about how to get him to do his part. Nothing really works. I just let things slide, or pick up and do more work. I paid my maid more money and have her do some of my chores in the weekend.

    I cannot imagine how life will be after another baby in this mix. I've decided to either stop working or go part time. I feel miserable about it somedays but if that is what will give me peace and happiness in life, I'm willing to give up any career aspirations.

    That said, I like CeeKay's idea of using outlook reminders. Except that is now one more task to be added to my to-do list :)

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  32. i forgot to add: its amazing how you are juggling so so so many balls in the air! hats off to you girl!

    now just remember to take a wee bit of care of yourself too...add that one more ball in the juggling act. and keep that one in the air, nevermind if any other falters and falls.

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  33. I just realised that I used your post to make my own rants. Sorry to have been of no help at all !

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  34. LOL! yeah i hear you. fortunately i dont have to go to work but the brat has to be in school by 8.45 and there is a car pool too so we need to leave early.

    but yeah - we dispensed with early morning baths. he has one when he comes back from school all hot and sweaty and one at night after dinner before going to bed. works for us.

    milk in the mornign is a bottle because i cant force him to have a cup so early and also because he has two more mugs during the day. either that or as cornflakes or porridge so that he gets three mugs of milk a day.

    clothes are put out at night even if i party late and come back by early morning. i ensure its ironed and laid out - the OA thinks i am nuts.

    the rest - i have no more words of wisdom sistah! i work work work - since i am working from home i feel guilty even if i stop for a cup of tea. otherwise its the bean and in between i have to take him to the bathroom or whatever because he refuses to let anyone else do anything for him since i am around. the maid is pointless.

    so no workout or parlour or anything. if anything i work harder on the weekend since the OA is around and i can concentrate on work.

    i'd say get a fulltime maid pronto. can i mail you some details of an agency in bombay? try it.

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  35. you have a temper problem, huh? i would never have guessed. you seem so calm. even this rant post is calm and rational, somehow.

    really hope things get better for you - i have been looking to you for a long time, thinking that you manage stuff so well even with the kind of job we have - now that it's time to get back to work - i read this post and realise how much exhaustion has been building up underneath the surface.

    will mail you tomorrow. hope you feel better and less tired already.

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  36. [JLT/ Sunita/ Shobana/ Talena] Thanks. It really helps to know there are kindred spirits out there. :)

    [Minka] The guilt can be a bit of a mood-spoiler in the alone time :(

    [Crabby] The way I see it, my problems are all mine and that makes them big for me, so forgive me for whining! Or don't. It's not going to stop me either way... ;)

    [Lavs] Ha ha. Just you wait ;)

    [Unmana] In my saner moments, I know I am not a bad mother – not a perfect one, but pretty damn good nonetheless... but this post was written when I was seriously stressed out. Worrying thing is that I feel like this pretty often these days – need that full time maid yesterday!

    [Candyfloss] Yup, but no morning bath really sucks in this Mumbai weather, especially since Ayaan tends to sweat during the night…

    [Nomadz] I may just disprove that theory by dying from the ulcers the messy house is giving me ;)

    [Kusum] That sounds like a familiar battle, one that plays out with weekly frequency here! Thanks for offering the maid, but really really need a full time one...

    [Sue] Ooh mommy holiday sounds nice. Seriously, let’s!

    [Melissa] “Maybe when Melissa is older” – yeah, let’s catch up when the kids are eighteen ;)

    [Ceekay] Actually there is no problem when I am not around – like when I am late at work or travelling, he will let Jai or Shashikala do everything for him without a murmur and barely even seems to miss me but the minute I walk in the door, I am supposed to be his personal slave! The negotiation sounds like a plan though – I am going to give that shot and see how it goes. The chart sound like an interesting idea too. Do you have a soft copy or a picture?
    Ayaan is three and still needs an afternoon nap if he is to be a sane human being in the evenings. I am putting him to bed at nine these days, any earlier and it would cut into my time with him...
    Er… sit and discuss with Jai... let me just say – been there, done that, didn’t work (over and over). It’s not his fault actually. It’s not that he is lazy or a chauvinist, he is just inherently laidback and forgetful about stuff! He has started doing a to-do list on the soft board in our kitchen and that is helping some.
    Thanks so much for taking the time to stop and give me advice twice. You should take lessons on this stuff!

    [Sur] Ooh that’s tempting. Shall I move to where you live? Then I can do a similar deal with Kiran, and have a weekful of leisurely evenings ;)

    [Orchid] I know. I really need to pick my battles. I wish I had a sane voice in my head that kept telling me that, especially when I am close to losing it.

    [Ranjit] Am so not envying your future wife right now ;)

    [Kiran] Read your comment at work and seriously considered crawling under my desk and going to sleep for a bit :)

    [Poppins] “It's not that he's deliberately mean or unhelpful, it's unexplainable. It's like he doesn't even notice how harassed I am.” Yes! Exactly!

    [Mad Momma] Thanks for the tips. On the maid front, I shouldn’t be cribbing since I am being really fussy. I am staying away from agencies because they usually send people without references and I have a strict policy about not hiring maids without references… especially if they belong to Mumbai

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  37. [Y] Calm?! Hah! Sorry to shatter your illusions... I think I manage stuff pretty well (even if I say so myself) but it's not easy and stress and exhaustion is the price I pay for it... thankfully, I have the sense to not unleash my temper on innocent bystanders... lucky you!

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  38. I know how tired you must be getting. I think he will get readjusted to his new school timing soon. You could also offer him a bait if he puts away his toys regulalarly like a packet of chips after a week or anything he loves.
    To give yourself rest send him to Patti whenever he has long holidays.
    For you, advice is to have one centrum daily!!
    For Jai, please get as organised on home front as you are on the office front.

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  39. Anonymous8:20 pm

    Can't add anything (don't have kids) but I'm sure its a HUGE function of not having a maid. Have a friend in London (strangely enough works for the same firm you do- you might have known her in India) who has two kids, manages her work-life beautifully etc etc but is totally frazzled right now because her nanny gave her notice. Brings me to mind of what Sophie Vanderbroek, the CTO of Xerox said in an interview. She said she was willing to change her job but not her home because of the infrastructure (doctor, neighbours, babysitters) she'd built up for her three children.

    Have you tried the churches for good maids? Try St. Theresa's in Bandra/UCDC (also in Bandra - I think I told you about this before) for some recommendations. I also think there is a Domestic Worker Agency in Bandra (you could ask at UCDC) that trains maids etc. Of course it also imposes conditions on the employers like holidays, fair pay and so on.

    Maybe its a nice business proposition to actually start a Nanny Agency for professional couples. You know, like take young women, train them extensively, make sure they are treated well when they go to work with an employer, keep tabs on them etc etc. Like a recruitment agency. Or even emergency babysitters/nannies for when their regulars up and leave!

    Good luck with everything.

    n!

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  40. LOL I loved your mom's comment, especially her nick - Patti Says So.

    Move to Jaipur :)

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  41. Oh Ro, I just know the feeling. Although in our household my husband is the one into lists. He is very organized. I'm going through a crisis with nannies right now. I almost want to quit my job over it. It's sooo bloody stressful!
    by the way, have you considered giving him a bath at night? we do that with both kids...so in the morning, i just get gudiya for school, feed her and it's done!

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  42. wow. your schedule sounds tiring i can't even imagine being there. and you still reign in your temper most times and lead an active life and don't cut out on all the stuff you like to do, that is something!

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  43. sigh! the problem with reading a post late in the day is that most ppl have already written what you want to say.

    yknow in a sadistic way, I felt much better knowing that i'm not the only one picking up after baby AND husband :)

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  44. I hear you! And if this helps, you are not alone. You are managing everything way better than I ever could...

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  45. did jay read this ? so are things better now?

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  46. Hi Rohini,
    I am afraid my life is going to be pretty much the same once I have the baby..sigh..am hoping you will have some solution in place by then which I can ape.. :)
    take care...i'm sure you'll work something out
    avanti

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  47. Hi Rohini,
    I am afraid my life is going to be pretty much the same once I have the baby..sigh..am hoping you will have some solution in place by then which I can ape.. :)
    take care...i'm sure you'll work something out
    avanti

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  48. hello rohini...
    iam an irregular blogger and i started reading your blog recently and believe me, its amazingly written. I just love the spunk and novelty in your blog. keep writing. best wishes for ayaan....

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  49. [Patti] Thanks, mom.

    [n!] Thanks for those leads. Will check them out... and I agree about there being scope for a professional maid agency... just not my cup of tea though - training one maid is just about all I can manage and even there, there is ample help from mom.

    [Poppins] Thing about Jaipur - nice place to visit, but not so nice to live in! Plus not even jobs to go around for people like us...

    [Big Zed] No bath in the morning in Mumbai weather is a little icky - especially since Ayaan tends to sweat in his sleep...

    [Anita] Thanks :)

    [Aqua/ Mystic] Like they say, misery loves company

    [Artnavy] Yup, Jai read it. He is going through one of his 'trying harder' phases now and the morning routine seems to have settled down (fingers, toes, legs and arms crossed)

    [Avanti] If I were you, I wouldn't hold my breath on the solution ;-)

    [Yash] Thanks

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  50. hey you! i can understand exactly how you feel. i nearly quit my job a month ago because i was under too much pressure and the worst is the guilt factor which never disappears. but hang in there...i'm sure the phase will pass...sooner or later ayaan will stop being so clingy, jai will pitch in more in child rearing and you will find a better maid!

    and puleeease dont say you are tired of feeling like a bad mother or wife.

    I can make out that you are a GREAT mother from everything i've read in your blog. And what exactly does being a 'good wife' mean when you have a job and a toddler to look after? I mean that in all seriousness cos i really dont know!

    and hey, i think its perfectly ok to have a less then perfectly tidy house when you have a toddler in the house and its perfectly ok to feel like pulling your hair and screaming (definately does NOT make you a bad mother!)

    hugs!

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  51. I completely understand your emotions. My baby is due in 6 weeks and am already feeling the stress of managing 'my' house 'my' way with my m-i-l over and my husband barely able to comprehend my sudden (and rare) bouts of crying! Phew!

    Just one suggestion, I live in Mumbai in Prabhadevi and have a pretty decent maid (if only she comes on time though!). If you'd like to try her out, let me know.

    Chin up gal!

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  52. I am too tired to even say a hi-five or a *same pinch* statement...just got back from Germany..landed at 2 Am and my next day started at 6 when Kaju woken up....my live in maid has quit and am all left to myself..it is sick how much my life was dependant on her...she was here with me for 5 months an dnow she is gone with no notice nothing....what can i say....i so get ya sista!

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  53. I hear you - we have a tiredness bug so large that if only I could trade it in for money, we'd never have to work another day in our lives. These days I even manage to doze off by 8, when the kids sleep!

    But one of the big things I learnt after having kids is to let some things go. It's easier since I'm not a tidy person by nature, but I have let the house be, except for the public areas. There are still pictures from our vacation last year that are waiting to be hung up, but we've gotten over it and let them lie...it's the only way.

    As far as the guilt goes...I figure it's part and parcel of the baby - that black stuff surrounding the baby in the ultrasound - that's the guilt monster.

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  54. It is normal ... and the best part is that these kids do grow up and become less messy. So just hang in there

    On the flip side, when they move on into adulthood, a big part of you wishes that they were as clingy as they are when they were in their infancy.

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