I really thought I was going to laugh when I first glanced at the picture above. After reading it, I was kind of at a mental stand still. I couldn’t pin point why I didn’t see the humor in this or why in fact it was starting to make my blood boil a little bit. And then, all the way from my toes still adorned in polish from last summer, came this:
I battle, day in and day out, with what has been buzzed as “Mommy guilt”. It’s that constant tug of war between what you are capable of and what you think you should be capable of doing.
I was in a rather snarky mood last night which means internally, I’m ripping myself to shreds. I sat at the dinner table and listened to my Sassy 4yo tell her daddy all the things we had done that day. As I listened, I realized that if I was not the mother she was referring to and was instead listening to a story about a different Mom, I would have said, “That woman needs to settle her ass down!” l, no doubt, would have deflected my own Mommy guilt about not giving enough of myself to my children in to a humorous slam. I realized three things after that. I really am my own worst enemy. My kids tell/show me all the time that I am enough. Mommy-ing is only a competitive sport when we let it be. Oh, and I kind of kick this Mom gig’s, now slightly enlarged, ass that day.
This all leads me to that ignorant cartoon I started you all off looking at. It’s crazy to get worked up over stuff like this, I know, but seriously? If you’re going to try to make a “humorous” point regarding teenage pregnancy (is that even possible?), could you please at least not make it at the expense of solely the mother. Who do you think is more than likely going to be raising that baby in the pregnant teenager’s belly you asshole! Ugh. Just sayin’.
I’ve kind of had it with feeling guilty. As a lovely, fellow blogging Momma said, Suck it, Pinterest! I want to vomit glitter and hot glue every time I see a recommended “craft” idea come through my Facebook feed that I know damn well some freakin’ engineering major at RIT thought up.
I don’t know where the notion came from that because a woman wants to stay home and raise her children that she is then responsible for entertaining them at every point in the day. Apparently, by letting my kids watch Scooby doo and eat something with a trace of sugar in it for snack, I have failed at “responsible” parenting. Well, shit! Here I was thinking “Go Me!” for budgeting the money well enough this week so that I could afford a nice treat for snack time. I almost let myself think that I was doing a bang up job because my kids like me at least as much as they don’t.
We all know babies don’t come with brochures titled, “How not to screw up your child”. What I think is missing from public opinion is that women are not born mothers. We have to figure this shit out as we go. And it changes on the daily. Yesterday my daughter was an angel. Today her head is spinning in violent circles and she could care less what I think is and is not appropriate behavior. I’m at a loss on this one and have probably encountered at least four epic failures on how to handle it.
I have said it before and I will say it again. If my children are laughing at story time and still breathing at bedtime, I have succeeded. I know that is the attitude I need to cling to but it’s tough.
I hear it over and over again…”they’re only small once, enjoy it”. I know. I know. And I’m trying. I do my best and some days are definitely better than others. I didn’t have a great or even a constant model of what it means to be a Mother. I’m not real sure what constitutes “enough”. So please, I could do with a little less of this…
and a little more of this please and thank you.
Leave the guilt for worthy occasions please, I have enough of those. I’m kind of over feeling like a failure when my daughter expresses herself with a Dammit! or I choose to remove the tumor, my son, from my arthritic hip.
By the way, never, ever, EVER Google the words, “fuck mom guilt”. Therapy is expensive people.