Lateefah Torrence

A Love Roller Coaster: The Emotional And Psychological Drain Of Parenting

Lateefah says it's the emotional and psychological drain of being a parent that will kill you. i i

Lateefah says it's the emotional and psychological drain of being a parent that will kill you. Courtesy of Lateefah Torrence hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Lateefah Torrence
Lateefah says it's the emotional and psychological drain of being a parent that will kill you.

Lateefah says it's the emotional and psychological drain of being a parent that will kill you.

Courtesy of Lateefah Torrence

Is there a name for this phenomenon?

Snippets and phrases from everyday conversations hitch a ride with the library of song lyrics in my head and set me singing.

Earlier this week, while we discussed (ahem, I worried over) the correct temperature for Dalia's feet, Frank quoted Happiest Baby on the Block author Dr. Harvey Karp's recommendation for an infant's feet to feel "fresh."

About Lateefah

Lateefah Torrence, 38, is a writer who lives in New York, N.Y. She and her husband, Frank, welcomed Dalia Joule on July 17.

I had no idea what that meant, but it sent me singing Kool and the Gang: "She's fresh, exciting! She's so inviting to me." And my dear Dalia certainly is.

Like fellow blog mom Lucy Peck, I can't stop covering my little one in kisses, from her comical curls to her expressive toes. It must be evolution at work because without the urge to smooch, I think I might lose my freaking mind.

Before I gave birth, I heard all the parents say it is the toughest job in the world. But I thought it was difficult like the Peace Corps.

In my mind, parenting was "The Toughest Job You'll Ever Love" because of the physical labor and never-ending hours. Oh, I was so very, very wrong. Perhaps as a non-breeder, I didn't listen to the truth or perhaps it's a big parenting secret: It is the emotional and psychological drain of being a parent that will kill you.

Let's take a peek at the thoughts in my New Mom Brain:

  • "Oh my God, she hasn't pooped in 24 hours. Is she constipated?"
  • "Oh my God, she's pooped five times in the last hour. Does she have diarrhea?"
  • "Hurray! She's still sleeping."
  • "Yikes, she's slept through a feeding. Should I wake her? What about, 'Never wake a sleeping baby?' "
  • "Ack, is she getting enough milk?"
  • "Oy, she drank so much she threw up."
  • "What are those spots on her face?"
  • "Is she breathing?"

As the Ohio Players sang, it is a Love Roller Coaster and I'm exhausted. At my doctor's office, I asked an experienced mom of two, "It gets easier, right?" She replied, "Do you want me to lie to you?"

Yes. Please.

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