If there’s one thing I’m notorious for, it’s mommy guilt. The most useless, time sucking emotion a woman is capable of after squatting out life. It doesn’t solve anything and it sure as hell doesn’t make us feel any better about ourselves, but still, it is a reality for most. That includes me.
I didn’t have time to shower today, I skipped my workout, my husband and I never have sex, my house is a mess, I don’t spend enough time with my kids, I yell too much, I get impatient. These are only some of the things we judge ourselves for, and I have been guilty of most, if not all of them at one time or another. Let’s be honest for a second though, who hasn’t? The part I can’t stress enough is that we are judging OURSELVES. I can guarantee you that no one else cares how clean your floors are or is keeping track of how much time you spend on the internet (BuzzFeed quizzes are a personal favourite) or how many times you fed you kids pizza for dinner last week. You want to know why? Because they are too busy beating themselves up about their own shit! Most likely imagined too, of course.
What is the point of all this? And why do we do it when we know we shouldn’t? While it would be easy to blame society or the way we were brought up, the answer is simple. Us. We are too hard on ourselves and we buy into the whole mommy guilt thing every time we allow ourselves to feel bad for taking a bubble bath or going out for coffee with a friend.
It’s okay to want time to yourself. It’s okay to want to remember what you were like before those drooling, pooping, puking machines came into your life and turned you into “that mom”, the one whose Instagram feed is basically an #instacollage of daily adventures in the mundane. It’s okay to talk about something other than your offspring for a change, and not only is okay, it’s actually normal and healthy. It doesn’t mean you don’t love your family. It doesn’t make you a bad parent or a bad partner. The truth is, when we are happy and well-rested, we are able to be BETTER (and less bitchy) people, and therefore, better parents to our children.
We need to stop with the mommy guilt. We are mothers, not martyrs.