Thursday, November 18, 2010


“Burnout happens, not because we're trying to solve problems but because we've been trying to solve the same problem over and over and over.” -Susan Scott

That windy, vast, lonely place just before rock bottom, that's burnout.  

After 2 hours of relentless crying and refusing to nap yesterday, I went to rock my teething, soggy daughter in my rocking chair.  I started to sing her one of her lullabies, "Bless Us All" from Muppet Christmas Carol. Then, when I came to these two lines:

Bless us all that as we live
We always comfort and forgive

I burst into tears. A combination of helplessness, self-pity, and wishing desperately that I could comfort my poor teething little girl just washed over me, and I let myself cry.  She looked at me with great interest, then stared at the mirror on her wall for awhile, lost in her own baby thoughts.  But she took a little break from crying, maybe 20 minutes or so.

I used that time to text my husband and tell him I needed a break.  After dinner, he watched Maeve so I could wander around Target, baby-free, for an hour.  I bought a few little things, chief among which was some Americone Dream Ben & Jerry's, which DH and I shared after Maeve went to bed.

Feeling burnt out is scary because it makes us moms feel incompetent.  We don't want to admit to needing a break, but without one, the descent into rock bottom is swift and agonizing.  My advice is to ask for help, get a little retail therapy, and apply ice cream to the situation as liberally as necessary.  

The teething has begun again today, but so far she's the only one crying.

Teething baby, temporarily entertained by the Johnny Jump-up


  1. Were it not for trips to Target, I probably would have lost my mind by now. Glad to hear that you're feeling a bit better today--ice cream always helps!

  2. Funny that Target is the destination when we moms need a break. I've been there, pushing around the red carriage, looking at, of all things, kids' clothes. (Either that or I'm at the Dollar Stop). And it just so happens that Panera Bread is in the same strip mall!

    What is Americone B & J's? I bet it's yummy!

  3. it is awesome :)

  4. I've been there. It is awful to hit bottom and just want to give up and go to bed. But somehow we get up the next day and do it all over again. Because they're worth it! I hope her teeth come in soon. Ryan has 4 now and the first couple were definitely the worst.

  5. I know exactly how you feel - those hours of endless crying - it's torture. Target is often my refuge too :) It is so hard to ask for a break, but really I'm a better mom when I get one. Hang in there. Hope little Maeve is feeling better today.

  6. So sorry you had a hard day! Retail therapy always seems to help, though!