Before I had kids, I didn’t really know what guilt felt like, I mean I would feel bad about things but I wouldn’t say I ever felt guilty. Now since having kids I feel guilty ALL THE TIME, for things that I wouldn’t have even blinked at before! Here’s a few examples;
· I feel guilty for leaving the house without them even if it’s for work.
· I feel guilty if I give them cake
· If I don’t give them cake
· If I let them watch TV
· If I don’t let them watch TV
· If I enjoy a couple of glasses of wine/gin and wake up the next morning a little fuzzy (hungover)
· If I regularly buy them new clothes/toys/books (in case I’m spoiling them)
· If I make them oven food and not home cooked from scratch food
· If I drink my coffee at the dining table behind the baby gate where they can’t get to it
· If I don’t let them pull out all of their toys at once
· If I sit on my phone too long (this is a big one for me)
This is just the things I feel guilty about on a day to day basis! I started to try and push the guilt away but I realised that the guilt is part of the reason why I am a good mother. The guilt makes me stop for a minute and think about what I can do to be better, how I can have a better balance. Yes, leaving them for work is HORRIBLE but it makes the days I am off with them so much more special. Yes, too much sugar is bad for them which is why I only give it as a treat or a reward. Yes, too much TV is mind numbing but my boys can say their whole alphabet and count to ten and they’re net even TWO and that’s because we try and choose programmes that encourage learning (okay so Paw Patrol and Peppa haven’t taught them anything…yet). I am an adult and if I want to have a glass of wine on a Friday or Saturday (sometimes Tuesday) night then I am allowed too, that’s MY time, I just need to remember that looking after toddlers with a raging hangover is HELL, so know my limits.
The guilt is what makes me realise that I am not perfect and I will never achieve perfection so stop trying, and its an everyday tug on my heart that tells me how much I love my children and just want the absolute very best for them all the time.
So if someone was to tell me that they could take my guilt away forever I would politely decline their offer (and then probably feel guilty about it). Instead I would ask them if they could pay for me to have a cleaner and take away all my tiredness instead!
Our Mum Guilt is what makes us want to do better and be better and for that I am thankful. So next time I feel guilty about pouring a third glass of wine I’ll remind myself that this is what’s making me a better parent!!