It seems guilt should be in the job description when you fist visit your midwife. Your new role automatically means you are guilt ridden, from day one, there is that sinking feeling that whatever you do will be wrong. That little glass of wine when pregnant, that catnap you had whilst feeding your baby, that first day back at work. Motherhood seems to now mean guilt ridden days. Whether we work or stay at home we are judged by other mothers never mind politicians, journalists and anyone who thinks they have something to say on the subject. Yesterday I sat with friends at uni and we talked about feeling guilty for studying at weekends. All feeling that we are not doing the best as we are studying or on placement all week so our weekends should be spent entertaining our children. Yet here we are trying our hardest to retrain and give our children a better life. They will reap the rewards of a second income, yet we feel guilty for being away from them to study.
Well quite frankly I've had enough of feeling guilty and being made to feel it. Yes I was a stay at home mother, I chose to do this, it was the most perfect time of my life but also the hardest years of my life. But I do not ever feel guilty for not trying to further my career when my babies were small. I high five any woman who can juggle a career and a baby or toddler. Sleepless nights, teething and a job, you are amazing. Staying at home reaps rewards but can be the stuff of nightmares so I applaud anyone who has chosen to take a career break. As for juggling children and working from home, running a business. I have done this and it is a miracle I kept those balls in the air for so long. No job is easy, but the hardest is being a mother, no matter how many children you have.
So whether you are working, staying at home, studying, retraining or running your own business stop feeling guilty. As long as our children have clean clothes, three meals a day, are at school on time, have practised their spellings, flute or Spanish we can smile. Yes that's right, smile because we are doing it, juggling and actually not doing a half bad job. Motherhood should be more like a sisterhood, less bitching about who has the hardest day or life but applauding our successes, which may just be making it through another day. Hang up that guilt and start reminding yourself that you are achieving something every day, no matter how small that thing is. And I am sure one day our children will appreciate what we have done and not even resent us for feeding them spaghetti hoops every so often!
Until next time, take care