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mommy guilt

mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

No matter how hard we try as parents, sometimes we still have a parenting fail followed by the inevitable mommy guilt.

I stay-at-home with my girls. I have always stayed at home. There was a brief 6 month period while I was pregnant with Gabs that I worked outside of the home but other than that I have chosen to stay-at-home. I have worked from home the entire time but I have always been within an arm’s reach of my daughters when they were small.

mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

I am the one who arranges everything just so. I make sure that birthday parties are exactly what they dreamed they would be. I am the one who plans vacations. I am the one make sure Christmas morning is everything they could ever imagine. I am the same person who pulls teeth, kisses booboos, wakes in the middle of the night for every fever and puke filled moment of it. I am the one who reassures them that there are no chickens or lemurs hiding under their bed.
mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

I am the one who makes their favorite meal. Knows their minds before they speak and knows when to hug instead of lecture. I notice the innuendos. I see the trembling lips. I know when they are fibbing or scared or nervous. I know every crease and crevice of their face and every curve of their existence. I like being that mom.

I put broken hearts back together when daddy had to leave back to Iowa. I explained the unexplainable to toddlers and when they didn’t understand, I took the brunt of their frustration and held them as their tiny broken hearts tried to make sense of it all. I cried in silence after they went to bed that maybe I had made the wrong choice.

confimation

I’ve kissed the tops of their heads and rubbed their backs as they’ve fallen asleep more times than I can count. I wake in the middle of the night to make sure they are breathing and covered. I listen when they think I am not. I make their favorite meal when they least expect it and most need it. I cuddle randomly and with wild abandon. I tell them I love them like every day is my last chance.

birthslider

I was there for their first word, first tooth, first step, first breath and first heartbeat. I always want to be there for everything. I want them to know that I am forever their soft place to land. It’s never just them against the world because I am always there beside them, when they need me.

ballerina, ballet, little girls,mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

I’ve never missed a ballet or tap observation, rehearsal or Nutcracker performance. I volunteer backstage. I’ve never missed a school party, field trip or mass they’ve participated in. I am their room mom. I drive on every field trip. Never missed a soccer match, swim practice or field day. I have scheduled my life to be there for those moments. For me, there is nothing more important.

I want to show them the world and teach them to live in it, proactively. I want them to go after their dreams and know that they can do anything. I also want them to know that no matter how old they get or how far they go, I am here. I am proud of them and they are loved beyond comprehension no matter where life takes them or who they become.

mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

I’ve never missed anything…until today. Tonight, I sent my girls off to tap class with the Big Guy like I do every Tuesday evening. I take them to ballet on Wednesdays and we alternate rehearsals. Tonight, my little one asked me if I could go instead. I said no because 1) I have a terrible migraine but 2) I have to work the book fair tomorrow morning and I needed to get some work done tonight. Then 20 minutes later, I received a text that tonight was observation night. I’ve never missed an observation night; not in 7 years. I am the crazy mom with the camera, the phone and the video recorder but not tonight.

 

Tonight, I dropped the ball. Maybe it was the migraine. Maybe it was the girls being sick the last 2 weeks. Maybe it was the hurried rush of the weekend. All I know is that in that moment that I looked down and saw that text, my heart broke because I missed my first “FIRST” ever because tonight was Gabs’ first tap observation. So, I’m sitting here sobbing, feeling like the world’s biggest failure.

Bellarina,mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

I guess every mother has this moment of reckoning. The moment that we realize that no matter how hard we try, how much we sacrifice or how much we want to we cannot protect our children from the world or be there for every moment. Eventually, they will have to do stuff on their own and we have to trust that we taught them and loved them enough to know they can and that just because we might not be there in person, our hearts are with them always but damn it still sure hurts missing those moments.

 

mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

What was the parenting fail that you instantly wished you could do over?

 

 

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mommy blogger, mommy guilt, blogger, parenting, work-at-home

mommy blogger, mommy guilt,working mom, parentingThe first thing I read this morning was a piece by my good friend, Jessica Gottlieb, Which came first the Anxiety Disorder or the Blog? Her post really resonated with me in a lot of ways but the most important takeaway that I had was the realization that I need to live more and blog less. This is nothing new. I have known this for some time now. Hell, I know that I need to back the fuck away from the computer and get out of my head and into my life. I need to unplug and it has never been as evident as it is this summer.

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mom fail

mom fail

I don’t want to Mom fail these two

The feeling of mom fail is inevitable at some point in motherhood. As a mom, I spend a lot of my time chasing my own tail. I am always trying to catch up. Just when I think I have a handle on this Motherhood gig, the rules change. This is not a complaint. This is a fact.

When my girls are sleeping, I look at them and my breath is taken away from me just by knowing they are mine. I made them. I grew them. They are amazing and that has to be in some small part a reflection of me, right?

On other days, when I just can’t catch up, I feel like a complete failure because it feels hard. We’re brainwashed into believing it’s not supposed to be hard. Then the guilt creeps in because I must be doing something wrong.

Mom Fail hurts

But then there are good moments that prove to me that I am not so bad at this motherhood job; days when I surprise even myself. Days when I feel like I was meant to do this. Days where there is no annoyance or heated reactions to bad behavior. The days that I actually think and breathe before I carry on are good days.

Last weekend, we were unexpectedly whisked out of town. Anyone who has children knows that an unexpected trip has a ripple effect of repercussions that you will be feeling the quake from for weeks to come. This was no exception. We were all exhausted and irritable.

Monday morning came and as I drove up to drop off, one of my worst failures as a mom was realized. It may not sound like much, but if you have a kid that has to wear a uniform to school, you know my pain. I sent my kid to school in her uniform on a dress down day.

We pulled up to see not only had she not worn shorts, after a lengthy discussion that included tears and bitter disappointment and me saying, “ Then just put on your jumper and let’s go. We are going to be late!” I’m certain this sounds familiar to at least some of you.

1st Mom fail of the morning.

Every kid was not only wearing shorts, they were wearing STREET*CLOTHES!! It was a dress down day. Catholic school kids live for these days. Major mom fail! Ella didn’t complain, she only exited the car. “Mommy, I love you.” and walked into the building, crushed. I felt failure.

I drove her sister to the pre-school and I couldn’t shake the feeling of letting her down. I was also impressed that she didn’t complain, even though I could see it broke her heart. After, dropping her sister off, I drove to the nearest Target (because we live nowhere near her school) and bought her an outfit. I drove back to the school, went to her classroom, took my daughter to the restroom and changed her into her shorts and t-shirt.

She was shocked, surprised and I completely impressed. That’s hard to do to a 7 year old. She was genuinely happy. In that small act, $25 and 15 minutes of my time, I created an unforgettable moment in her life. She will never forget that I took the time and care to make her happy. I will never forget that giant beautiful that she had, just for me. She is always loved and she knows that but sometimes it’s nice to remind them of just how special they are to you.

What’s been your greatest mom fail? How have you turned a mom fail into a mom win?

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working mom , mommy guilt, work, mom, family and work balance

working mom , mommy guilt, work, mom, family and work balanceThe Working Mom

Working Mom guilt ~ Finding the balance between work and family is the sweet spot in life where every working mom wants to live. But how do we find the perfect balance between our careers and our family, more importantly, our children? This is a struggle that I think every woman is too familiar with; one that I, myself, have struggled with since giving birth to my first child.

Even if we are afforded the luxury of being stay-at-home Moms,  we are torn and left feeling guilty for not wanting to be in the house, with the children, sans adult conversation for 24-hour increments/ 365 days a year. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom, a work outside of the home mom and a work-at-home mom. All have had their challenges and in every category, I was a working mom. Raising children and maintaining a home is never ending work, even if the perks include spontaneous hugs form adorable munchkins.

As a stay-at- home mom, I wrestled with being overwhelmed with no down time. I found myself having verbal explosive diarrhea each afternoon when my husband walked through the door. I felt disconnected to the outside world and then I felt extreme guilt for feeling like I wanted to be anywhere else. After all, what kind of mother needs time away from her children? Obviously, this was a sign of a major character flaw on my part and I should suffer in silence like a priest trying to purify his soul and purge the impure thoughts. After all, wanting to be away from my children, wasn’t that the most impure thought that a mother could have?

While pregnant with my second child, I temporarily took a job outside of the home. It was only in the afternoon, after my husband was home from work, because I could not bring myself to leave my 1 year old with anyone else (another side effect of extreme Mommy guilt). She was up for precisely 2 hours after I left for work. In retrospect, she probably didn’t even notice that I was gone. She normally played with Daddy from the moment he walked in the door until bedtime anyways, regardless if I were home or not. Yet, every single day that I walked out the door for my 5 hours of work, I felt like I was betraying her in some profound way; abandoning her. The guilt was palpable. The job lasted eight months. From the moment I took the job, I was looking to find something that allowed me to work from home.

This Working Mom wanted to work from home

At six months pregnant, I found a fabulous job that allowed me the flexibility to work from home and make my own schedule.  I was ecstatic. Then I started the job and realized there is only one rung of Mommy guilt worse than leaving your child to go to work and that is sitting in the same house as your child, hearing them call out for you and having to make the decision to tune them out so that you can get work done. The guilt I wrestle with is colossal.

I’ve been fortunate that my job has allowed me to scale my hours back when I need to and increase as I see fit. It’s been a Godsend. Now, the girls are a little older and next year, they will both be in school all day. I decided it’s time to pursue a career that not only fits my lifestyle but also is something I love doing. After all, don’t we all deserve to have it all; the partner, the children, the career and the lifestyle that we want?

I’ve just started a couple new jobs. I still have my original job; editing and tutoring in English but I have added regular freelance writer to my repertoire. I can now be found at SmartMomStyle.Com and The Stir daily plus I am writing my weekly post at Aiming Low. It’s very exciting and absolutely my dream job. As it is starting any new job, it’s taken some concerted scheduling efforts on my part. My husband and I had to sit down, figure out a writing schedule, incorporate the kids schedule and make certain days and times off limits because they are reserved fro family time. It’s only been a week but I can see that the schedule is already making a huge difference in the amount and quality of time that I am spending with my family.  It is also working wonders for alleviating the Mommy guilt.

I’m sure you working moms have many different ways to deal with the Mommy guilt, the schedules and how to make the best out of your time. I’d love to hear your stories and recommendations. I want to have it all and leave that working mom guilt out of it.

Photo Source

Bye Bye Working Mom Guilt

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The holidays for me are usually all warmth and fuzziness, mostly. Don’t get me wrong they are chocked full of craziness but right underneath the surface of all the chaos, complete happiness is bubbling its way to the surface and about to spill over. But for some reason, this year things feel… off. It all looks great on paper, we are doing all the things that should be done to make wonderful memories for our girls but for some reason, I don’t feel like my heart is in it. I don’t feel the bubbly goodness rising to the top as it should be this far into December.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I am watching the finances closely since this year has been full of new jobs, relocations and maintaining separate households, which is nothing to speak of the fact that our whole life has been suspended and not quite right with the Big Guy not living here. Maybe my lack of enthusiasm has something to do with being overwhelmed by the to do lists and not enough time to accomplish the tasks at hand. I have been buried under snow for most of December and there’s been no time for shopping, baking, enjoying. Its been a series of appointments and dates. Truly, I feel like my girls are being jipped out of their Christmas. I’ve been so  caught up in all the obligations that I’ve been snapping at my girls and firing snark from my mouth like an AK-47.I know on more than one occasion, lately, I’ve given them the “are you retarded?” look and may have even said something to that effect, but not quite as awful. But the sentiment was there and that is as guilty as saying the words themselves. Thoughts become words and words become actions.Well, even thinking that makes me a really horrible Grinch of a mother, in my book. I don’t want to be THAT person.I don’t want my girls to think it even fathomable that I could mean such awful words.The thought of them believing that I think they are anything less than amazing or that my love is conditional upon whether or not they are pleasing to me, makes me sick to my stomach.I want to be happy, excited and gay. I need to get my warm fuzziness boiling back over. I want to spread it all over my children like warm molasses.

Christmas is not about things to do, places to be or presents to open; Christmas is about love, peace and people.I want my girls to look back on their childhood Christmases and remember the cuddles in front of the fire, spontaneous Christmas cookie baking, making fudge with Daddy, snowball fights, and watching Christmas Movies; staying up late to put cookies out for Santa and going to mass with the whole family.It’s firsts snows and snow angels.It’s togetherness.It’s a series of moments that form a lifetime. I want it to be a feeling in their heart.I want it to be the spirit of something larger than us; of hope, love and joy. I’m clearing out the clutter of my life and my mind and going forth, my only true obligation is going to be to see to it that my girls are happy.Everything else is secondary.  

Fah who for-aze! Fah who for-aze!
Dah who dor-aze! Dah who dor-aze!
Welcome Christmas, Welcome Christmas,
Come this way! Come this way! 
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Just a few more of my Mommy Truisms to brighten your Labor day!

  • Labor is like being stuck in rush hour traffic~annoying, boring,uncomfortable and full of anxiety
  • Delivery is like minding your own business and suddenly being kicked in the head by a unicorn flying overhead~ painful, unbelievable and magical.
  • Watching your child learn/experience something for the very first time is more awesome than winning the lottery and a lot more likely to happen in your lifetime.
  • Vaccinations hurt Mommies 97% more than they actually hurt our children.
  • Listening to what your 3 year old is trying to tell you is so much more important than any phone call, email, television show, chore~all that other stuff will still be there, your 3 year olds childhood will not.
  • Firsts are so hard because they lead to lasts.
  • The first time you leave your child alone with strangers (school, ballet, soccer, gymnastics, daycare) you will cry and feel extreme guilt~ You are NOT a bad Mommy!
  • Guilt is just a side effect of being a great Mommy!
Happy Mothering, my friends!
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With great power comes great responsibility.Don’t we know it. We’ve all come to Motherhood, for better or worse, because we wanted to love a child.The thing is, I don’t think any of us thought it completely through. How could we? We were not equipped with all the facts. No one told me that from the moment of  conception, I would henceforth be completely forgoing any and all of my own needs, wants, and desires. I don’t mean things like going to bars, staying up all night, blowing a wad of cash on useless crap. No, I am referring to the basics like going to the bathroom alone, showering for more than 3 minutes,having the luxury of shaving my legs, waxing my lip,  being able to eat a warm meal, being able to read a book that wasn’t about a Toad or a Frog, being able to get an entire sentence out of my mouth before being interrupted, being able to actaully spend time with my husband as spouses and not Mommy and Daddy. The shame of it all is that its not only expected of Mommies, it’s practically demanded. Every time I feel like I might want some thing ( however small it may be) for myself ( a goal, a minute, a dream), I can feel all of society giving me that look, you know the one . The “you made your bed now lie in it ” look!
I feel like Motherhood makes women superheroes, dually a blessing and a curse. A blessing because it is fantastic that we can mean so much to our children, when they are small but at the same time a curse, as we are expected to do all things, at all times, for all those we love with the exception of ourselves.If you dare break from script, then you get crowned a right selfish bitch. You are made to feel guilty for wanting needing to be something more.  How dare you want to be a person? Oh wait, you are a person.You are human and as such you deserve such basic human rights as freedom to live and say and do what YOU want.; to enjoy a drink that I poured myself without having to worry if someone is back washing in it or spilling it, to be able to hear yourself think, to sleep for increments larger than 3 hours, to be able to have an hour a day to pursue your dream, hell, to have a dream.
I realize I’ve made my bed, and I love my bed, but sometimes Mommy needs someone else to take responsibility for making the bed so I can go out and enjoy a latte with my girlfriends like an adult; like a real person with real thoughts, real feelings, and limitations. With limitations come meltdowns when we are pushed beyond our breaking point. Don’t feel less of a Mother for this, feel more. If we don’t break down once in awhile and always power through, we are doing a disservice to our babies. We have our meltdown, we step back, we breathe, we rejuvenate, and we come out the other side a better Mommy, a better person. Just keep in mind, my fellow superheroes…Mommies are people too!

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Good morning, my sunshines! It is Tuesday morning again! You know what that means. Time to let it all out:) Of course, today is Fat Tuesday..so maybe we should really get it all off our chest in anticipation of Lent.I mean who doesn’t want to start Lent off with a clean conscience and a light heart! So, please join me in our weekly expelling of our “demons”.As always, I will start!
I wish that when I asked my husband to call me from the road, when he is driving in bad weather and I am waiting to hear how an interview is going, he would actually do it! Instead of me having to track him down and him giving me vague answers!Argh!!
I wish that my 2 year old would keep her hands out of her sister’s face. It’s so bad that her older sister calls her “the Tiger”. When I asked,”Why?”, she simply replied,”Because she claws and bites, Mom!”Enough said!
I wish that same “Tiger” would stop bringing the glitter glue to me and forcing it into my face, narrowly escaping dropping it into my much needed coffee!
I wish that I could write this blog in silence versus the screaming, crying, chaos that ensues each time I attempt to get in front of the computer!It’s like they do it on purpose!
Finally, I wish that I , along with all the Mommies I know, could do everything, be everywhere, and get as much done as we want to without filling guilty for neglecting our children, our husbands or our responsibilities! In short, I wish that we could all live free of Mommy guilt!!!
Ahhh, breathe in, breathe out! My husband just woke up…yeah, just now. Must be nice! I better go and inform him that I am bestowing the honor of driving in the blizzard to get the groceries. Ahhhh, sweet revenge!LOL
Your turn! As I have said before, do it anonymously if you like but please…get it off your chest! No infraction too small or too large. We will love you still and think you are an awesome Mommy…just for being human and trying!Come on girls….Do the Fat Tuesday!!!

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