“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|