Happiness has a Secret…Low Expectations.
Expectation is the root of all heartacheWilliam Shakespeare
One of my favourites, William Shakespeare, said the above words and over the last 8 months while working on myself and my mental health (which I will touch on in more depth in a future post) I have to say that I, once again, conclude that William knew his shit.
We’re all guilty of it, whether we are aware of it or not and there is that inevitable moment that you sit there, hand deep in a bag of Cadbury Caramel Buttons wondering why you bothered as you have once again allowed yourself to feel disappointed in a person or situation.
What screws us up and over most in life is not only the picture in our heads of how we see something going but the words “should be”. I have always had that debilitating habit of building up a picture in my head of how things will be, whether that be an event, a day out, a romantic moment or the same “getting fit” montage that runs through my head so many times a day and allowing frustration and pressure to pile up on myself when it doesn’t turn out that way. There are so many memes around the internet of expectation vs reality and there is a scene in one of my favourite movies “500 Days of Summer” that depicts it perfectly and it’s one of the reasons I love that movie so much, it’s not the “typical” happily ever after romantic movie that reinforces all the delusions of grandeur in life.
Recently, my long suffering forever human and I have been redefining our relationship as we both stopped one day and realised that our spark needed an electrician and I for one felt depleted. We were no longer the people we used to be with one another and that scared me, especially when I realised how much I was starting to resent him. This was when I knew we had to do something to fix things and quickly. What we realised was that it was the labels and the “should be’s” of those labels that were fuelling us to feel pressured and trapped and that didn’t fit well within us due to the kind of people we are. My “Forever Penis” as he is now fondly known, said some of the wisest words he’s ever uttered in his, now, 30 years of live during our conversation “Sure, we have a piece of paper that says we are legally bound to each other and only each other but nowhere on that piece of paper does it say how we should choose to live our lives together, that’s up to us as individuals. This is our marriage. No one else’s” That’s Yoda level shit right there, especially for him. It really resonated with me though and it made me look at him, myself and our relationship in a completely different way. A relationship is a completely separate entity, it’s the extended part of both of you but you both have to bring the best of you to that entity to get the most out of it and you have to do that in the way that works best for the individuals in it.
I am not a typical “wife”, I am a lousy housewife, I’m so far from Stepford it’s not even funny. My Mother raised me and my 2 older sisters by herself and I’ve never thought I needed a man for anything in life, however, my “Husband” was lucky and had a very idealistic childhood and he wanted to be like his Dad when he grew up. I never thought I would get married or have children, I wasn’t one of those girls who dreamed of a wedding and had any clue of anything that I’d want in that aspect and I never thought I’d want to be a Mom but here I am. Yeah, my wedding sucked (again thanks to having a picture of it and it not at all living up to that…plus asshats) but I’m still married and have two slightly unhinged but amazing boys. I see them all as my best friends and it’s that connection that we operate on first and foremost because really, Love isn’t pretty and romantic, love is stumbling through life with your best friend.
We are living in a time right now where I think we are learning that we must redefine our expectations in life, especially the expectations we put on ourselves. It’s important in these circumstances to think in a “good enough” headspace and make “good enough” your own definition as well as remembering that mood and daily circumstances can alter that definition of “good enough” each day. One day you may have had a better sleep than another and gotten several big ticks on a “to-do” list completed but another day life might just be giving you both barrels and you can’t be on the same level. It’s absolutely fine on these days to have “good enough” just be a case of making it through the day.
For those of you who are reading this that don’t know, I am a Mom to 2 boys, Macen age 4 and Carson age 2 and they really have changed me more than words can convey however my expectations of Motherhood and what a “Mom should be” have made naturally difficult times even more difficult. I never really thought I would have kids. I wasn’t one of those girls who had the desire to be a Mother, but I hadn’t ever discounted it either. I thought by the time I had to start sharing my wisdom with mini versions of me that I would have my shit together, that I would know how to handle it like it was always a part of me, what a crock of fucking shit that was! You could be the most mentally stable person out there and I can guarantee parenthood will bring you to your knees, no matter your station in life you can bet your ass that you will find yourself running to the bathroom and locking the door at some point in your parenting journey; either to urinate in peace, to have 5 minutes peace to finally eat both fingers of a Kit-Kat to yourself or to ball your eyes out because you realise that Satan DOES exist in the form of a tired, stubborn, hungry 2 year old who is furious that you should have the audacity to ask them to wait for anything, to pick up the toys scattered on the floor that you are one step away from a broken neck on or of course to simply wear a jacket when it’s pissing down of rain because you are of course a god-damn sadist. You can quite easily allow these moments to break your soul, to allow yourself to feel like the worst parent in the world and when you put extra pressure on yourself in the form of expectations of how a “good Mom” would’ve handled the situation it only makes things harder.
Imagine if every woman woke up tomorrow and decided to love herself how many industries would go out of businessDr Gail Dines
I am nothing like the vision of what anyone would class as the “typical” image of a doting Mother, I get more tattooed by the years, I have an undercut and either a pixie cut or I put in extensions and I’m a women who has the mouth of an educated sailor. I pride myself on strong not skinny goals when it comes to my fitness regime and I’ve come to terms with the fact that genetics means I will always have hips and curves that just won’t quit. None of these things matter when it comes to how much I love my children and it’s one of many things I hope that comes from this global pandemic is that people start to judge people less and just allow them to be. Illnesses don’t discriminate, no matter your stance on religion, politics, your sexual preference, your gender, your skin colour or the music you prefer it will take your down just as easily. I often forget that my boys aren’t thinking on the same wave length as I am and they see me as their Momma Bear, I’m their snack bitch, story teller, song singer, ass kicker, encourager, best friend and boo-boo kisser. I’m the woman they go to when they need shit done. Yes, I have many pictures on me, but they don’t care, they just know that I love them and that is all that matters and I really wish we could keep that beautiful view of people into adult years, especially when it comes to ourselves.
Love Hard. Be Fierce. Horns High.
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