We spend nine months trying to live like organic angels verging on born again virgins, doing everything we can to grow a healthy little human. Buying into every miracle cream, vitamin and birthing class and book going. What keeps us committed through all the dry parties, the charcoaled steaks and inedible non runny eggs?
The thought that we are doing all we can to give our little ones the best start in life and that once we have completed our mission of growing and bringing a healthy human into this world we can then ease off the pressure, give ourselves a huge pat on the back and enjoy our baby and all the things that make us feel normal and part of society at large.
PAH! Who were we kidding?!?
Why does no one warn us that pregnancy is just the tip of the guilt laden iceberg and once you actually reach motherhood status you will be living as a nervous wreck feeling guilty about everything you think, feel, say, do, don't do, think about doing, never get round to doing, wish you could be doing, what you feel you should be thinking, feeling, saying, doing...It is bloody exhausting!
Ladies I give you motherhood. The one thing able to send you from feeling like a million dollars to a piece of dog turd in one fatal swipe of a muslin cloth. It is a constant battle between our pre-baby self and our new mum self, who we don't quite recognise or feel familiar with. However, here she is as bold as brass, shoe horning herself into our consciousness and leaving us feeling guilty and anxious over the most ridiculous of things that would never of even registered with our former selves let alone be an issue.
We've all been there, and most of us are there daily. You are having one of the best days since labour day. You wake up after three hours unbroken sleep (which now constitutes as a full nights sleep), your little one is actually feeding to schedule and you've managed to have a shower , yes an ACTUAL shower and all before midday. You are feeling bloody amazing. You have this motherhood game down. Then WHAM BAM! The bastard that is mummy guilt comes sweeping in , slaps you round the face, throwing you all off kilter and making you feel like a shit mum.
Let the battle commence.
In one corner your pre mum self, telling you to get a grip, it's only a dummy, bottle, a dirty nappy, a few crys, a glass of wine, a night out, formula (and so the list goes on). You have nothing to feel guilty about. You are doing a great job. In the other corner sits, the gut twisting mum guilt, screaming at you that you can do better! Undoing all your previous good work and leaving you instead as a guilt ridden, crumpled mess, as you try to soothe a screaming baby whilst feeling like the worst mum in the world and questioning why the hell you thought you could pull it off in the first place?
And all this before you even dare contemplate your other worries of not spending enough time with any other children you may have. That you haven't had sex let alone a non- baby related conversation with your partner for what seems like a lifetime and that all body parts north of your navel are more planet of the Apes than yummy mummy!
We all stand guilty as charged!
On a daily basis us mums have two battles on our hands. One being to get to bedtime all alive and in one piece and the other is the never ending battle with ourselves and the guilt that at times can be so debilitating we just want to throw in the towel and say to hell with it. Guilt trip you win. I will now berate myself and be a slave to the master that is mummy guilt. I surrender!
Ladies do not be beaten; you do have this motherhood thing sorted. How do I know this? I am there with you. I, like the rest of you am juggling babies, my sanity and incessant guilt trips daily. And you know what has made me take a step back and give myself a break? My children (yes the root of the reason why I feel guilty in the first place) Recently, mid melt down to my husband, something caught my eye that stopped me and my guilt laden tears in their tracks. Something so powerful that any guilt I felt was replaced by a hysterically relieved laugh.
Amidst me declaring to my hubby that I was a shit mum (brought on by the fact I couldn't express enough milk so I could get some sleep and my hubby could do a bottle) and him declaring reassuring words to the contrary for the thousandth time that morning, I caught a glimpse of something that made everything ok. My tiny little human, sleeping (for the time being) with a big milky grin on her face.
Did she think I was a shit mum? Did she think she had been given the dud and wanted out? Yes she may have been wishing I would keep my whaling to a minimum but the rest she really doesn't give a crap about.
You see despite the days that feel like hell to us and despite the feelings of guilt we have, these tiny humans of ours really couldn't give a rats ass. To them we rock and they could not be happier with their tired and stressed human, who answers their beck and calls no matter the time of day, night or smell coming from their nappy. We can do no wrong in their eyes, so we need to start looking at ourselves through them. We are bloody legends who single handedly grew all their body parts and are now keeping them alive on a daily basis. Without us there would be no them! Meaning us mums are pretty bloody spectacular no matter what your guilt trip is currently trying to make you feel crap about.
Therefore, let's all scream out together:
"Oi Mummy guilt you best be on your way before me and my knackered mum self, kick your manipulative and evil ass into that pile of fermenting dirty nappies I still have not had time to dispose of or feel guilty about!"
Amen to that sisters!
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