Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Mum Guilt

So today I felt guilty.

I felt guilty that I couldn't be bothered to put all the books back on the bookcase (yet again).

I felt bad that while Izzy was at nursery school that me and Ethan spent a lot of time eating popcorn and cookies on the sofa watching Cbeebies.

I felt guilty about the state of the kitchen because I didn't clean right after making...

playdough (for a birthday party coming up),

and brownies. (I know, popcorn, cookies and brownies. My mum guilt is literally getting worse by the second)

I especially felt guilty seeing Izzy's sunflowers that have yet to be planted (or watered enough) since she brought it home two weeks ago. Though I'm kinda digging the jaunty angle of the sunflower on the right...

But then I got to thinking.  

I wonder what Ethan thought of today. 

I imagined what I would see if I was his age.

I thought how he would get to snuggle for an hour (or two) on the sofa with his mum watching his favourite cartoons and eating his favourite food. 

Then how he got to play dinosaurs in his room while his mum was making silly noises and making the dinosaurs dance.

He probably didn't notice the pile of laundry his mum was eyeing guiltily.

Then he got to help his mum make a toastie for lunch. And probably wasn't bothered at all that when he pulled out his chair and there was some dried noodles from last nights dinner. He just swept them straight off onto the floor.

(This photo really makes me cringe!)

Then he probably felt pretty good about being able to fall asleep on the sofa for his nap time before he got carried up to bed while his mum read some blogs.

And I don't think he minded being cuddled and rocked when he woke up, and before going out in the pushchair, especially as he got to see some dogs and birds. 

I know he loved being able to have all his toys around him when he got back so that he could easily choose what to do while mummy and Izzy made Jack's playdough.

And I thought. 

I have it all wrong.

Ethan and Izzy had a good day. 

I thought I'd failed because the house needed cleaning and tidying. Because I hadn't crossed any of my "to dos" off and because I hadn't done anything educational with my kids. 

And don't even get me started with their nutritional intake.

But today wasn't a fail. My kids had a great day. 

They don't care about my list, or the housework.

I think too often we are too hard on ourselves. Harder than we would be on each other. Harder than we should be.

If another mum had come to me and said she felt guilty because of the day she'd had. And if it had been like mine I'd have been like "Dude! You baked and made play dough!" 

So you know what? I'm going to try not to be so hard on myself. I'm going to think what I did well at the end of the day, rather than listing all the things I didn't do or did wrong.

What about you? Why were you great today?


  1. My mum i remember was a great mum,BUT our house was very clean,and i remember my dad playing with us more than mum,she actually plays with her grandchidren more than she did us her kids. I always used to watch television with my kids,i know all the cartoons they watched,like 'Dungeons and Dragons' about a group of kids who were magically sent back to olden times with magical powers and they tried to get back home and they never did i don't think that episode was ever made poor kids!!!!! I remember me and my daughter cuddling together in a quilt while watching 'Fairytale' that was a special moment,what we as mums have to remember housework will always be there our children will not,and before you know where you are you have grandchildren,and you will want to do better by them.xxxxx

    1. It's true,I always feel bad watching tv sometimes, but I loved when we'd watch a film together! You're so wise Lesley. I do have to remember what they'd love. It's okay to leave the housework for a while.

  2. Love this post. We could learn lots from the little ones and I agree-- "Dude! You baked and made play dough!"

  3. Awesome post and well said. My house is always in disarray. My kids don't care if it's a mess. I also love the picture you posted the other day of your hubby and daughter on the sofa and the picture frame was still on the floor next to it! I laughed so hard, I remember the post you wrote about it. Finally someone else is like me. My mantle is the same way with a picture frame and the stuff on top of it. LOL!

    1. Ha ha, I love that you noticed that! It's been there so long I've stopped noticing it! I'm clearly taking my own advice well ;)

  4. I was great today because after a twelve hour shift. I made a meal and washed a lot of the dishes.

    1. You ARE awesome! You have a lucky family.

  5. Girl, you are too right. I feel that way a lot and I know that I end up going to do the chores or whatever whilst I could be savouring his childhood... Must look through his eyes a lot more!

    PS, thanks for the playdough! Jack loves it! YOU'RE AWESOME!!!!!!

    1. Says you! Great party, bet Jack loved it. Our kids didn't want to leave. Glad you like the playdough.