“guilt is to the spirit, what pain is to the body”
day after day, we make pressing decisions regarding our children. what they eat, what they drink, where they play, what they play with, their manners, what they wear, you name it and we make the decision. some are minor, they will barely be pinpointed on the roadmap of their childhood, while others.. well, they could make or break your child. if you ask me, THAT is a lot of pressure to hold on to. knowing that a decision I make could ruin my child in the long run, I mean.. whoa. now, I may be getting a little ahead of myself since the decisions these days are “should I cut off the crusts of his pb&j?” or “is it okay for him play with that makeup brush of mine?” and will eventually mean nothing but that does not stop me from feeling guilty about my decisions, how we spend our time, my kids reactions, and having to discipline them. here are the top things that I feel guilty about on a daily basis :
- I feel guilty about how much time my children (mostly my oldest) spends asking for his iPad, playing with his iPad, toting around his iPad, basically anything to do with his iPad. sometimes I feel like I have created a crutch for him by giving him the freedom, some days.. he asks for it then walks away and plays for hours without noticing it but sometimes.. he wants to stare at it for as long as he can (or as long as I will let him)
- putting my kids to bed at 630pm some days when they are just too grumpy to parent any longer. they have always gone to bed early, by 7pm at the latest. Cam has started to stay up a little later when my husband is home, but mostly.. 7pm is bedtime.
- whether or not I am spending enough quality time with them. have you ever tried to spend quality time with a one year old? it mostly consists of them trying to stick their fingers in your eyes, nose, and mouth as many times as they can before you stop them. not that I do not love hanging out with my girl, we aren’t always engaged with one another when we’re alone some days and I wonder if I am being a bad parent because we aren’t constantly singing a song, reading a book, doing some. kind. of. learning. activity.
- yelling. man do I raise my voice sometimes when I get frustrated, not just at my kids, but at our dogs. my dogs have the ability to make me yell like no other creature on the planet. anddddd then I immediately feel guilty for raising my voice whether at my kids or not, because losing my temper isn’t an example that I wish to set.
- I sometimes go for the easy meals instead of cooking something ridiculously healthy, full of vegetables, lots of vitamins and nutrients and all the rest of that stuff that kids are supposed to have. in my defense, it can be pretty discouraging to make an entire meal then have your kid say “I no wite dat” and refuse to eat any of it, so chicken fries it is. at least until he goes to college then he can eat all the ramen he wants.
the moral of this blog is to show you that everyone, including myself, feels mom guilt over decisions they make. some are justified, like raising my voice, some are beyond silly, like thinking I need to face to face with my daughter 24/7 for her to thrive in the world. at the end of the day, my children are loved. they are healthy, they have fun, they spend a lot of time being little and exploring their freedom without interference. I try my best to be a perfect parent but we all know there is no such thing. we are all human, we all get mad, we all get frustrated, we all lose our temper. next time you’re laying in bed, looking at all the sweet pictures of your children (not the ones of them throwing themselves on the floor having a full blown tantrum) remind yourself that YOU are doing an AMAZING job and you are doing the best you can. motherhood is not easy, it is not for the weak. you find your village, then ask your village to remind you on a daily, at least weekly, basis that you are killin’ it.
now I am going to stare at the sweet little faces on phone until one of them wakes up and I curse their names. just kidding. sort of.