Saturday, August 1, 2009

What's with the Guilt?

Mommy Guilt. If you're a mom, you know what I'm talking about. I just wanna know: What's up with that? I mean, why do we feel guilty for everything and nothing all at once? Why is it that being a mom seems to make one a guilt magnet?

Example: I have three kids and I worry about equal treatment - as much as is possible, as perfectly equal is not. Individuals can't be treated exactly the same simply because they aren't the same. That said, I still find myself feeling guilty over just about anything. The latest is pictures, of all things! When Abby was born, I was diligent about having pictures taken at regular intervals. I started at 6 weeks (figuring her hospital pics were good enough for newborn), then 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, 12 months, 18 months, 24 months, and annually after that. When school started, we just started relying on those for her annual individual shots. For Grant, I was pretty good about sticking to that schedule. There might have been some slight variation - like 19 months instead of 18 months - but I still did a pretty good job. Poor sweet Natalie, however, is getting the short end of the annual-pictures stick! Long story short: I missed her 18-month pictures! My husband was gone to Fargo for 30 days when she hit that milestone, and I just never got around to it. And now, she's 21 months - three months from her 24-month pictures. I feel bad - and I am sure this will be a source of regret at times in the future. We do take pictures of her at home, but not nearly as much as we did Abby - or Grant. Poor kid is getting the classic third-born treatment!

Why do I feel so friggin' guilty about this? I mean, seriously! It's not like it's a life-or-death thing! And it's not like she hasn't gotten treatment the others missed out on! For one, we take lots of videos of her - something we didn't do with Abby very much at all, simply for lack of the requisite equipment. Same for Grant. Plus, I worked full time, so I missed a lot of what I've taken video of with Natalie. And then Grant got more ultrasounds (prior to birth) than the girls. Poor Abby didn't get any - our insurance wouldn't pay for it! Natalie got the standard mid-point ultrasound. Grant, however, got two in-depth sonograms. Poor Abby, when we showed her Natalie's pictures, asked about hers from when she was still "in Mommy's tummy." The disappointment on her face brought on major Mommy Guilt! I found myself wishing we'd gotten one - but that would've cost us $300 or more! We didn't really have that to spare.

All of this to illustrate the things over which I tend to struggle with feeling guilty over. There are many more that come and go, depending on what we're dealing with and how I'm feeling, but those are the major ones right now. It's annoying, to say the least. There are times I get down on myself because of this stuff, but then I remind myself that these aren't major issues. Overall, we do a good job (I think) with our kids. We love them; we take good care of them; and we do our very best to make sure we do right by them. Still, there's always something that brings on the guilt. Why is that?

How about you? Do you suffer from Mommy Guilt? If so, what brings it on for you? If not, how do you manage to keep it away?
Post a Comment
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...