Friday, January 8, 2016

Guilt on Parade

Maybe this is a little weird, but I'm starting to try and keep track of my emotions and how they fluctuate throughout my...erm...cycle.  TMI?  Sorry not sorry.  I'm blogging for myself, remember?

Background: after the birth of W I started "charting" my monthly cycle to keep track of fertility, avoid pregnancy, blah blah blah.  But as I've learned and read more about this, my perspective on my emotional health is starting to shift.  You see, for men it's normal to have a pretty steady emotional state from one day to the next.  This is how they're designed.  Women aren't like that. (Duh.)  Our hormones and therefore emotions fluctuate wildly, so why do we fight this process?  Surely there's some purpose to it, right?  I don't really know but it's something I've been pondering lately.

Anyway, today was cycle day 2 (aka, I started my period yesterday), and I've had a guilty day.  Everything makes me feel, just, guilty.  I'm not treating my kids right, not paying them enough attention, not appreciating these moments in their lives.  I'm poisoning them with antibiotics (ear infections, yo.) and not giving them probiotics to counteract.  Not sticking to a good morning/evening routine each day.  Not making them drink water instead of juice.  Not getting them outside to play everyday.  But mostly it's the guilt of not appreciated them.

I know that these moments are fleeting.  C'mon, I'm their mom.  I see them growing up.  And it's not like they aren't freaking adorable, because they are.  They totally are.  But they are also in a super needy place right now and it wears thin.  W's tummy is upset by the antibiotics so he has started just screaming when he wants to be comforted.  High pitched's awesome.  The girls talk uninterrupted, relentlessly, and non-stop, all. day. long.  E makes demands, regardless of whether or not I'm working to fulfill another demand at the moment.  And she doesn't stop asking until she's threatened with discipline.  And A asks questions about everything she sees, hears, or thinks.  Yes, sometimes these questions are hilarious:

Mommy, why do dogs poop?

Mommy, can you teach me to soar like an eagle?

Mommy, why can't we walk in neighbors' yards?

Mommy, why did God make me sick?  (Actually this one was equal parts pitiful and adorable.  "Sweetie, God didn't make you sick.  Sometimes God lets us get sick so we slow down and rest.")

Cute, right?  But you can imagine how it would wear thin after a while.  So I end up getting frustrated with them while I'm around them, and later on remember how adorable they actually are and feel so miserable because I was short-tempered in the moment.  Tell me I'm not alone.

I KNOW I could be doing more as a Mom.  I'm guilty of paying too much attention to my phone or trying to run around getting *my* to-do list completed that I miss out on moments to just play with them.  But at the same time, being a SAHM is lonely work, and I crave adult interaction, even if it's just via Facebook.  And at some point the laundry has to get done, in spite of the coloring pages and play-doh.  I just...don't want to look back on these years with regret.  Is that too much to ask?


  1. Your tracking project sounds interesting! Would love to know the results. :)

    And I know just hearing someone say it doesn't make it feel true, but you are a FREAKING AWESOME mom, and the fact that you're even wondering if you're doing it "right" tells me you're way ahead of the curve. You love them. You point them to God. You make sure they don't kill each other or small animals. If you lose your temper or forget to treasure a special poo, I think you're still doing the most amazing work. :) I'm sure we'll all be able to look back on life and wish some things were done differently, but as long as you have some special moments to look back on (and no, not every moment is special), then my bet is you won't regret it. :)

    I can't speak to the parenting guilt, but I can tell you there are moments of sheer terror where I feel like I've done ____ [fill in the blank with marriage, my schooling, being a daughter, a sister, a friend] completely wrong and messed it up beyond repair. In my saner moments I try to think about that stuff as an opportunity to see God's mercy in action. But in the moment I definitely freak out and usually eat chocolate.

    Love you! And love this!! Keep it up!

    1. Thank you! It's amazing how much we doubt ourselves, isn't it? You are a FABULOUS friend and I love you so so much!



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