Mom guilt. Yuck.
Every single one of us Mothers have felt it. Guilty. Over something.
Are we teaching them enough? Are we hugging them enough? Do I laugh with her enough? Do I sing to her enough?
Honestly, it freaking sucks. But I have a feeling it's not going anywhere.
Working Mom guilt is the pits. Some of us work and love it, some of us work because we have too. Doesn't matter the circumstance, there is going to come a time when work makes you feel the "Mom guilt".
You miss a pre-school play or you can't bake cookies for the class party. Or you're on a work trip and you miss Valentine's Day (yep, still not over it).
Stay at home Moms aren't immune either. There's the ever present "am I teaching them enough? Are they being socialized enough? Am I enough?!" questions that plague them.
I've been both. The guilt is everywhere.
Then you get posts like this and rebuttals like this that fly like wildfire all over the world wide web. One week we're all gung ho over the first one and vowing to focus all of our attention on our kiddos, then in a few weeks, that gets old and the second one comes out. Just in time too, because we need something else to get fired up about.
I have to say, I agreed with both of those posts. They both had extremely valid points.
I like the first one because I have been that Mom. I've searched my Instagram while my kid begged for my attention because it was a habit or because I felt out of the loop or because, well, just because. I've been know to tell her to "shhh" and "go watch her show" while I look at Facebook and catch up on my Reader.
That first post didn't make me feel guilty though. That writer can't do that. That post did make me more aware of my time though. And for that I give the lady props.
I really liked the second post too. It makes sense. In a world as technology driven as this one, our whole entire world is on our phone.
Yesterday I watched BG play in the backyard for 30 minutes while I dabbled on my phone. To the passerby, I would be the Mom ignoring her kid for the phone.
In reality, I was watching her. And cheering her on. But I was also answering a few work emails. I was filling out the paperwork for her specialist appointment coming up, I was scheduling in doctor's appointments and I was paying a bill.
When I was done, I was tempted to hop on Instagram and just look a bit. But she wanted to play soccer, so I set my phone down and we played soccer.
There has to be a balance. I think people expect us as Moms to be on all the time. And if that's the case, well, I know I fail every single day.
I adore my kid. But I also know my limits and I know that if I don't take a break for some me time every now and then, then I can't parent her to the best of my ability. I tend to snap more, lose patience faster, and shut her out more if I'm drained. I tend to be more drained when I don't take care of me.
I think it's okay to occasionally sit your kid down with a puzzle or something while you flip through your Facebook feed. I think it's okay to let your kid play in their room alone for a few moments while you decompress on the couch. I think it's okay to occasionally let them watch one extra cartoon while you finish an email to an old friend or wrap up a phone call.
I sometimes think we're doing things the wrong way. When I read posts that say that when a kid is awake, they should have your undivided attention, I'm like "say what?!". I remember when I was growing up, I heard "kids should be seen and not heard" and now it's the total opposite. Since when did the children take over?
All this to say that I get it. To both posts. And I think they're both right. And wrong. I think it's okay to occasionally let other things grab your focus but I also think it's really important to focus on what really matters. I think it's really important to manage your time well. To manage your homes well. To manage your family well. I also think that figuring out how to get all that done, is different for every single Mama. Only each of us can figure out if we're doing all of the above to the best we can.