Friday, February 15, 2008

Mommy Guilt

Mommy Guilt has got to be THE most powerful weapon in the world. It attacks me almost everyday. Did I spend enough time with them? How could I leave them with a babysitter? Are they eating the right foods? Did I pay equal attention to both of them today? Did I praise them enough? Did I ignore them? Did I scold them to harshly? Did I not discipline them enough? I don't do this all the time - I've gotten ALOT of great advice and support from my kids' teachers and close friends. I've also seen alot of examples of moms that I do NOT want to be like.

Today I kept the kids home from school because we are slowly becoming a one vehicle family again. I also babysat my lil nephew today. So I had my two home, plus my nephew, plus my two daycare kids. That's a 5 1/2 year old, a 4 1/2 year old, a 21 month old, and 18 month old, and a 1 year old. All cooped up in the house all day. That was 5 poopy diapers I changed and probably at least 5 more peepee diapers I changed. We had snack time outside which ended up in 3 of them soaking wet and muddy because they got a hold of the water spigot in the amount of time I was in the kitchen getting drinks. My kids didn't nap at all, the youngest slept off and on for a total of an hour and a half, my nephew slept from 11-2 and the 21 mo slept from 2-430. Now on a normal day I have ALL my kids of care sleepign from 2-430. I desperately depend on that quiet time! I really think it's the only thing that keeps me sane! Despite all this craziness the day didn't go TOO terribly bad. Add on to all of this that I have the added stress of my BIL's wedding tomorrow (Horribly Dramatic Long Story) and the possibility of some of my husband's family needed to crash at our disaster of a house (that they haven't seen yet!). So in the midst of all the children I am trying to clean up a bit and working on laundry that has been piling up for a week and a half now.
Ok so fast forward to this evening, all the kids - besides my own - had left, my kids were happily watching a movie, and I was in my bedroom cleaning. My kids eventually come in and start playing around me. I make a trip with some clean laundry to the livingroom to add it to the pile of some stuff to be folded and go to put some of the already folded laundry away. Only I can't find my folded laundry ANYWHERE! Then I notice it, an empty basket that was previously full of socks and underwear, folded towels on the floor under pillows and blankets. Yup my son - with his sister watching and not telling me - had, at some point, swept ALLLLLL of the folded laundry onto the floor!!!!!!!!!!!!! I swear I saw red and had smoke coming out of my ears!
I sent them both to their rooms and sat to veg for a bit But I really felt like I absolutely did NOT want to see either of their faces! They eventually came out and fell asleep on the couch next to me while i watched my show.
And now I feel guilty. I hate that they fell asleep when I was mad at them. I'm still upset with them but I didn't want that to be the last thing they felt before they fell asleep. But they REALLY did something WRONG! And I hate that I was mostly irritated because of my loooong day and that is SO not their faults! But they SHOULD have known better right? It's the attack of the mommy guilt again. My house NEEDS to be cleaned and laundry NEEDS to be done. But maybe my children NEEDED my attention? I dunno, I'm probably overanalyzing. I just feel really guilty about how I acted towards them. I didn't beat them, I didn't scream at them, I told them that they had hurt my feelings and that I was really really really upset with them. Are they too lil to feel guilty? They did say they were sorry but do they even know what that means? If not, then why did I even talk to them that way. Should I have just ignored it and moved on? AGH!!!!!!!

I know I am a good mommy. It's been told of me by several people. Not to toot my own horn or anything but that is important to me. Being a mom is what I have ALWAYS wanted to be. For a long time people would ask me what I want to do when my kids start school. A mom. That's it. My job as their mother doesn't stop just because they're not with me for most of the day. Or because they don't need me to wipe their hiney's or fix them their meals. I will always be their mom. And I want to be the best mom to them I can be. I don't want them to remember me as the ignoring mom, or the impatient mom, or the mom that spent more time with the daycare kids, or the screaming mom. I want them to remember me as the loving, understanding, realistic, and fair mom.
I don't know if they'll even remember what happened this evening when they wake up in the morning (they've been asleep since before 7 - thanks to the no naps). I pray that they don't.
Sorry for the rambling but this is heavy on my heart tonight as I look over at my 2 sweet babies sleeping peacefully. Now I am off to fold laundry - AGAIN!!!


Cosmo Mom said...

I know ALL about mommy guilt, you know i do. and I don't think you should feel bad. There is nothing wrong with telling them when they have done something wrong. Did they hurt anyhting? no.. was it fixable.. yes. but that's not the point. the point is, it's not okay to throw something on the floor that you've worked at folding. bottom line. They did something wrong and you told them so. It's okay. I'm sure you didnt' scare and they will be okay. tomorrow they probably wouldn't think a second about it. But I do this all the time to myself. You love them so much and they are so cute, and innocent to you that you hate to get angree at them. But it's okay. it happens my kid just touched a kitty litter scoop so i'm off to wash her hands bye

Emery Jo said...

Ah, yes- the mommy guilt. I believe we are much much too hard on ourselves probably 99% of the time. Just know you're not alone in feeling this way! I feel it alllll the time too. so hard!