Today you woke up and fixed a lousy breakfast for the kids. Mom guilt.
You kept the television on for way too long this morning. More mom guilt.
The spunky toddler who ate the chalk that you may have snapped at. More mom guilt.
The newborn that doesn't seem to be in your arms enough. Sigh, mom guilt.
The toddler running around that begs to be in your arms more. Freaking mom guilt.
The laundry piling up. Well, we'll let that one slide.
Motherhood and mom guilt seem to go hand in hand for many of us.
If there is mom guilt with just one kiddo, adding in another is enough guilt to bring on the waterworks and the feeling of never rising to the challenge in the ways that you wish you could.
As a mom, I'm quickly learning that mom guilt is something that we bring upon ourselves. It's the likely result of too much social media that shows us clips of other people's lives where we realize that maybe they are rocking motherhood (and juggling more than one kid) much better than we are. Crafts, learning projects, fancy full course breakfast plates, exploring outside, limited television and so on, makes us take a look at ourselves and evaluate how we are doing. It puts an unnecessary pressure on us to do better and be more. I for one am very guilty of this.
Perhaps the worst guilt of all, the guilt that surpasses too much television and too many toys, is the guilt that comes along with having more than one child. I've never felt so much guilt as a mother until I came home with a newborn while having a two year old. It's a real, possibly unspoken guilt that many of us face.
The chance of both babies needing you at once is high. Like, it happens multiple times a day. The chances of having both babies begging for your arms at the same time happens more than you'd think. The question of whether or not one of your sweet babies feels neglected pops up into your head daily.
Bringing a new baby home with a toddler is vastly different from bringing home your first baby.
There aren't endless hours of cuddling on the sofa and staring at your new work of art. No, that's hard to do with another person clawing you for each and every thing. More milk pease. Read books pease. Pease outside. Hungry Mama. Mama, poopoo. Hold Mama PEASEEEEEE. It doesn't end; it's not supposed to. They need us and always will.
But it's the helpless one sitting there in the bouncy, or even hanging around in your ring sling, that you feel like doesn't get enough of you. In actuality they likely do get exactly what they need, but it's the comparison of their start at life to your first born's start at life, and you feel guilty that they are different; that they are not getting your undivided attention.
What I am starting to learn about mom guilt is that it means more than just negative, guilty feelings. Mom guilt means that I am a good mom.
A good mom worries, has fears and wants nothing more than to do the best and be her best.
While it's still hard to embrace the mom guilt and let it go, it's something to work on. I'm trying to embrace the chaos, find the supermom balance, parent as closely in my beliefs as I can and discard the mom guilt. It's tiny steps to realizing that I can do this and so can you.
Mom guilt will likely never go away. But what is important is realizing at the end of the day that you all survived. Sure there may have been too much TV and takeout for dinner, but they were loved. Your kids were loved beyond measure and you gave it your all.
You are a good mom.
Tomorrow is a new day.
And you will still be a good mom.