Mommy guilt. Sigh. I have so much of it! It’s no wonder since after becoming a mom the list of things I’m responsible for grew exponentially. Being a mom is rewarding but OH EM GEE is it demanding!
Most of the time I’m heavily sleep deprived which brings a million extra challenges to my daily life. Did you know that sleep deprivation is one of the most common reasons behind postpartum depression and psychosis? Yeah…with just ONE 5-7 hour stretch of sleep PER WEEK, the symptoms of postpartum depression can greatly subside. Getting to the list of to-do’s feels like a daunting task every day. Since it’s tough to actually get to everything on the list…guess what happens? Yup, guilt.
Guilt that you’re not getting things done, guilt that you’re not spending enough time with your kids, guilt that you’re not giving your spouse enough attention, guilt that you’re not taking care of yourself, guilt that you’re not making the world a better place, guilt that you haven’t returned phone calls, guilt that you haven’t reached out to your friends, guilt that you still have baby weight to lose but can’t even get to the bathroom alone, how in the world can you get to the gym on your own? Shall I go on? There is an endless amount of things in our lives that we feel guilty about.
The thing about mommy guilt though is that it does something special for me and maybe for you too. It actually makes me a better mom. Why? Because when I feel guilty it’s tough to stay in my guilt so I naturally look for ways to eliminate the feelings. So, I strive to be better. I become more present, I focus more on my kids, my husband, my work, myself.
When we FEEL better, we DO better.
When we spend just a few dedicated minutes connecting with our kids, something shifts almost instantly. Have you ever noticed that when your kid is “acting out” or “misbehaving” and you stop what you’re doing to give them your full attention, all of a sudden their behavior changes? Have you ever been in a power struggle with your child and think to yourself “I AM GOING TO WIN THIS ONE, DAMMIT” but know you’ll never win this one?! Yeah… me too.
So next time you’re feeling guilty, join my party, acknowledge the feeling, look at what’s going on that’s not working and work toward making it better!
Now go on… proceed with your mommy guilt.