A new mom that can’t breastfeed, a young mother of two who will miss her son’s first soccer game, and an older mother who can’t be with her sick daughter who lives states away. What do all these things have in common? MOM GUILT!! I’ve been told that no matter how old children get, their mothers never stop worrying about them and I’m of the opinion that the same goes for the dreaded mom guilt: It never goes away. The truth of the matter is being a mom is hard and we need to give ourselves a break and here’s why:
- You aren’t perfect: And no mom is! You shouldn’t feel let down if you aren’t able to be in ten places at once and anticipate every need and every sickness your child is going to have. You are not a robot with endless energy. You are human and are doing your best. And your best is good enough. In fact, it’s perfect.
- Your guilt doesn’t help: If you are beating yourself up about coming up short all the time, you are never going to be able to be in the moment and enjoy what’s left. Sure, guilt from coming up short might motivate temporarily, but carrying guilt for too long will only make you feel worse and worse. Let it go and move on.
- Your kids love you: It’s true, they really do! They will be fine even if you forgot to dress them in pajamas for pajama day. I promise, your child will survive. And chances are, if you are beating yourself up about something, they will feed off that energy and make you feel worse than your already do. Are all their basic needs met? If the answer is yes, your kids love you. If the answer is no, your kids love you.
- You can give yourself a break: True story time. I’m missing my daughter’s first softball game of the season this week because I have concert tickets with my best friend who I haven’t seen in 6 months. When I told my daughter, she gave me a little grief and for a brief minute I thought about cancelling plans (sorry Amy!) I made 7 months before my daughter even decided she wanted to play softball. Then I told her that her daddy and brother would be there and I would make it to the next one. She gave a whiney “OK” and then moved on to talking about something else. The point is that I gave myself a break and you can too. Your life does not have to be all about the kids, all the time. And just be sure and cheer extra loud at the next game.
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