The analogy is not original, but my SAHM status makes me empathetic toward zoo animals. My kids stare at me and hang on me. Sometimes their little hands pull my pants down. I try to load the dishwasher, wipe the table, switch the laundry, answer the phone, or pee, and they are watching. I am the oldest of ten children. I like to be alone sometimes, maybe because I was seldom alone when I was younger. I always like to pee alone!
Because my children always watch me, this makes me nervous. Am I eating like a monster mess? Am I working too much? not enough? Being impatient with them? on the phone? Rolling my eyes at the television? I don't want to teach them nasty habits, which I'm sure I have like other people do too. I also want to be realistic around them, because people are, well, real. They should be real. I should be real. I don't want them to grow up and say with an exaggerated head shake and eye roll to the sky, "my mom always..."
Aside from the analytical part of the zoo animal idea, I don't know what to do when I feel like this. I feel slightly cornered, suffocated, and overwhelmed. (I feel exactly like I did when students would surround my desk during lunch break. Students aren't my kids and they are tons older. I would just go to the restroom or lounge. My house doesn't have a lounge). I love my babies and want to help them. Do the kids need extra hugs? kisses? attention? I can't really pinpoint a pattern-they just get like this sometimes. They stare at me and hang on me. My mind goes so fast that I don't know what to do. I don't know what they want or really what I want from the situation either.