I have been thinking a lot about this post. Again, I am not sure I want to publish this piece but I do feel that it is something I have in common with many of you.
"Mommy-Guilt" is something that I am all too familiar with and, quite frankly, very intrigued by. I had heard the phrase before becoming Mom but I didn't realize how severe things could really become.
Guilt has been the new and unwanted friend in my life for the past two years. Not a moment goes by that I don't feel guilty about something. It consumes me in every decision that I make because with every decision I do make there is a choice left on the back burner....usually it is a choice for myself.
Do I pick exercising, playing with my kids, or preparing for writing conferences the next day? Do I buy a new pair of shoes for school or the hammer that Kate has been wanting (Elmo featured a theme around building things this week)? Do I take a shower in peace or do I get my kids out of their cribs and try to squeeze in a shower (with an audience) later in the day or do I wait until nap time and walk around like a greaser all morning? Do I take a much needed night out with friends or do I stay home with my kids because a sitter is expensive and I should be at home raising my kids -- not someone else?
Now, I know common sense would tell me that it is okay to make choices with myself in mind sometimes, but it is not that simple. Rationality goes out the window when you let the Mommy Guilt in.
So I find myself trying to do it all: I can exercise at 4:30 in the morning, play with my kids until 7:30 bed time, and then plan for writing conferences after they are in bed. This, again, seems like a logical use of time.... So, for those of you that haven't already tried to be this kind of person, try it. I dare you. You will find there is no time for anything else. Where does poor Brent schedule his time with me? What if his scheduled time with me doesn't work with his routines?
It's a delicate balance and I am still trying to admit that (gulp) I can't do it all.
How can you help people (Moms and Dads) like me? First, when I try to take exercise out of my day remind me how much I hate my butt. Encourage me to buy the new shoes. The stupid hammer can wait until Christmas. They have too many toys anyway. Don't judge me when I shower and my kids are playing noisily in their cribs. Also, don't judge me on the days where I am a greaser until 1 or the day that you might stop over and everyone (including dog) is in the bathroom screaming because Mom is trying to take a shower.
Just understand that sometimes I need help getting off the back burner.