(photo credit: justin ide. this is a guilt-inducing face. she might be flipping us off in this photo)Mother's Guilt is a phrase I've heard tossed around quite a bit- both before and after becoming a mother. The one thing I now know for sure is, it's real. It's amazing how much guilt caring for a baby can create.
Meredith has eczema really bad. I am always feeling guilty that I didn't put enough lotion on, or apply as many times throughout the day as I should. I feel guilty when her neck gets crusty and icky. I feel guilty when the top of her head is a bit smelly from her lotions (fragrance free=smelly). I feel guilty when I change her in the morning and her tummy is covered in red blotches.
There are inevitably chores to be done around the house. Chores I once, foolishly, thought would be so easy to accomplish once I was at home all day with my baby. Expecting mothers, take note, this is not the case, at least not at first. When I put her down to do laundry, tidy up a few things, make the bed or try to get dinner going, I feel guilty.
When we are out running errands and she is screaming in her seat of torture (aka. car seat) I feel guilty. When I've miscalculated and we should really be home for a nap, but are out, around town I feel guilty. When I'm trying to take her on a stinkin' beautiful walk and all she does is scream, I feel guilty.
There are lots and lots of things that make me feel guilty. On a bad day, I feel guilty all day. On a good day, I know that almost none of the things listed above are really things I can help. I'm doing my best to be a good mom and find some sort of balance. I'm also working on having the good days way out number the bad days. Because let's be honest, guilt certainly doesn't help me be a better mother. In fact, it probably does just the opposite.