Even as I sit to write this post, I feel it. It’s that same little feeling that overwhelms me multiple times per day. Mom guilt. Yeah, the kids are asleep, but shouldn’t I be cleaning the house or researching colleges or planning for retirement right now???!! Yeah, my kids are 3 and 4 years old. You laugh because you know you feel the same way…every day. It’s actually on my mental To Do list to deal with and decrease my mom guilt…which I haven’t had a chance to do this week…ahhhhh, more guilt. So NOW I’m not taking care of my mental health, great…. I’m pretty much destined for an insane asylum by the end of the year. Hmm, I wonder if they will have WiFi there, so I can get a bunch of work done.
Mom guilt doesn’t only come from within. There are a multitude of external instigators, starting with the ever-present…social media. I have literally had people come up to me and say “Wow, you really have it all together!”…um, no. Incorrect. I do try, but NOBODY has it all together. And if that has been the projection on my social media accounts for even one second, I cannot apologize enough. I too, look at these incredible, inspiring women who are beautiful and amazing moms and have successful careers and gorgeous hair and minimal under-eye issues….and I think…..”Wow, they really have it all together”…insert MOM GUILT. The truth of the matter is, under no circumstances does ANY mother think she has it all together, and if she does, well, she was prescribed some sort of awesome new confidence pill. We all struggle with the balance. Am I home enough? Am I present enough when I’m at home? Do I look at my phone too much? Am I a good enough cook? Am I working enough? Am I working out enough? Am I making enough money? Am I a good enough wife/partner? Am I having sex enough? Do I like sex enough? Did I floss the kids’ teeth last night? Oh crap, I don’t think I flossed their teeth…well, they are guaranteed to have cavities next time I take them to the dentist. Oh no, am I taking them to the dentist enough??
IT’S. NEVER. ENDING.
This is an HONEST struggle for me, every day. And finding the balance is a full time job in itself. So, I’m making a conscious effort to….chill out. My children are beautiful and healthy and they adore me. I work hard and do my best. I literally work my dream job and make money doing it. My husband and I drive each other crazy but we love each other to the ends of the earth. We have a wonderful life.
I AM A GOOD MOTHER. I AM A GOOD PARTNER. I AM GOOD AT MY JOB. I AM GOOD AT THIS.
So all you mamas out there who know exactly what I’m talking about, give yourself a break. You don’t have to be perfect, in fact, you CAN’T be perfect, so stop trying. And love yourself, not just on Mother’s Day, but every day, all year long.
Photo credit:: Coleen Hodges Photography