Can't Wonder Woman my way through Law School

July 28, 2017

There are days no matter how immature it might seem, I can't help but wish I had superpowers to really handle adulting and parenting. The past few months were really tough on me and my mental health is suffering. I was in a dark place.

It's really difficult to really be in charge of the household, having control over the cleanliness of our place (ours is small studio unit so when a portion of it is dirty, it's hard to ignore and you can't just dump it all in another spot) having to think of what to feed your kid today (I never really knew meal plans take a lot of time and energy,) making a grocery list (good luck if you fail to include something you need within the week,) having to feel a sting of guilt when my kid gets prolonged exposure to TV or gadgets and all other mommy plus wifey responsibilities.

I should be worrying about my finals but the first thing that came into my mind when I woke up was that the laundry basket needs to be emptied, Cia needs to eat some veggies because our diet was all-meat yesterday and we need to pay our bills and so on and so forth.

I think it's not all because I am OC, I might just have too much on my plate. Months ago, I decided to slow down on selling and blogging but it made me gloomier. Stopping selling and blogging did not give me more time to study. I realized that selling and blogging were stuff I did while I was looking after my kid. I was multi-tasking and it was possible as it only takes 5 minutes or less to respond to an inquiry in my shop, and blog posts can be drafted and will still be easy to continue anytime. 

But studying law while looking after a kid is a bad combination because you'll get interrupted every 15-25 minutes. Absorbing, correlating and memorizing is impossible if I have to fetch water, bring her to the potty, answer her whys and whats, be forced listen to a cute made-up story about Chacha and Chuchu plus check on her if she's making a bigger mess every so often.

Working is output based whereas studying demands more focus and a clearer mind. Giving up blogging and selling did not give me more time to study. The extra 10-15 minutes while waiting for my kid to finish her business in the potty was not enough for me to even gather the mood and focus to read my assigned readings. And how about nap times you say? It takes too long to make her sleep most of the time ako pa nauuna makatulog!

I became frustrated and depressed. I could not blog nor sell because it makes me feel guilty that I could do those things but I could not study well. I was really at my wits end, it came to a point that I cried every night to my husband telling him I don't know what to do anymore.  

I don't really mention these woes to my friends because I keep on thinking that at the back of their minds they might think, "ginusto mong maging nanay, deal with it." and most of them are not mommies yet so they cannot relate. It made me feel really alone.
Sometimes I ask my mommy classmates in lawschool how they manage to study then I feel a tinge of envy because they have a whole barangay of support (most of them live with their parents or live a few blocks away from their parents so they have a yaya+lola tandem looking after their kid/s while they study) whereas I only have a small family and both of my parents have remarried so it's so difficult to leave my child with them because they have different schedules and priorities. Even if my parents do their best (I know they do!) it's hard to admit to myself and to them that it isn't enough. (I mean, it doesn't give me enough time to study)

I remember one schoolmate who told me that her infant child is in the province and she lives in a dorm nearby (it's a super big sacrifice too on her part too) so yes I do know everyone has their own difficult battles to fight.
It's just that mine can be overwhelming too.. but I didn't want to succumb into depression or self-pity so I knew I had to do something.

Few weeks ago I attended a talk about Balanced Motherhood, it was very timely because I think I lost balance and my life really needs re-balancing. I have spent too much time enjoying my child and now might be the time to let go a little bit because I have to finish my post-grad studies as it has been delayed for too long already. I also have to give myself some me time!

From the talk given by Ms.Michele Alignay, I learned that during emotional highs, it's okay to PAUSE, that I should ditch the guilt and choose to always love more. Plus I have to practice SELF-CARE to be able to give the best of myself to my husband and to Cia!

Last but not the least, I found peace in this quote which Miss Michele mentioned and which I actually came across months ago when I bought and read Chicken Soup for the Soul (Stay-at-Home Moms Edition) This was the quote:

"You can have it all; you just can't have it all at the same time."

Suddenly everything made more sense. There was a time when my baby needed to be exclusively breastfed (she's allergic to cow's milk), she needed more of me (as there was no grandma or a trustworthy yaya to help me look after her) and so I have no regrets for being a full-time/hands-on mom to her during the first 3 years of her life.

Everything just made more sense now because I can't really DO it ALL at the same time (breastfeeding + studying law + managing the household with no yaya) moreso HAVE it ALL at the same time. Indeed, there is a right time for everything. Wonder Woman couldn't even save Steve Trevor because she was busy fighting an enemy!

So there, the goal should never be to achieve perfection. The goal is to live an imperfect but balanced life. Striving for a balanced life means letting go of some things based on the hierarchy of your priorities. Let's see how it goes. I really hope I can do this re-balancing thing well, if you have tips and advice for me please feel free to share! Thank you for your time :)

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