Sometimes I feel that my second name should be ‘guilty’ because I am a guilty mother for something or the other. And it all started as soon my little daughter was born. From this perfectly happy-go-lucky affable girl, I turned into an emotional mess overnight.
So if I wanted to visit the washroom or sleep and my baby cried, I felt guilty. If I went out for grocery shopping I felt guilty. If I slept while my baby was awake, I was guilty. There was no end to it.
But I hadn’t realized the extent to which this guilt could play havoc on my life. In my previous blogs I have written about how I desperately want to resume my career. Every day, I feel ‘why I am wasting my life like this?”.
Then the mother in me argues, “you are not wasting your life, you are investing it in your child’s future. Is this why you brought this child into this world, so that you can put her in a day care?”
But there is a sensible voice that says “you can’t spend every minute of your wake up time with your child. It’s impossible. Instead of quantity, spend quality time. Work toward your goals too. Your child will appreciate that.”
“What if she gets hurt or falls sick in my absence?” or “Won’t my daughter miss not having me around?”
I argue, “Come on, woman, your daughter has fallen a hundred times with you around. How did it help her?” And also, “Kids adjust. She will miss you for a few days, and it’s not like you are not coming back in the evening?”
The questions are galore, so are the arguments. In spite of reasoning with myself every few days, I am still not able to make up my mind. Because I feel guilty. Again, that ‘g’ word.
I know I am a mother. But why do I forget that I am first a person. I have my own needs and wants. Somewhere, being a mother, I have forgotten myself. I love my child to distraction, but that can’t make up my whole life. I need to be myself, and less guilty. And I need to keep telling that to myself every day till the time I can live with the guilt.
This is what I have been doing to cope up with my guilt.
- If her father can work guilt-free, so can I.
- My child needs my love and presence. But she needs money too. And extra money doesn’t hurt anyone.
- There is no substitute to self-sufficiency and independence. Who doesn’t like to see money rolling in?
- If I am so happy staying at home with my child all day long, then why do I feel so empty within?
- My daughter is not content with playing alone with me. She needs her friends, classmates etc. After a few years, she would need less of me and more of them. What will I do then?
- I spend reasonable time with my daughter, but the times when I don’t I start questioning myself. Is it so wrong to have sometime for myself?
What are your thoughts? Are you a guilty mother too?
This is a post by my friend and fellow blogger Aesha from Aesha’s musings who has similar thoughts to mine on being a guilty mom. Do read her post.