I am not feeling good. I’m slowed down, unmotivated, and fed up. The weight of what I need to do every day is crushing me, and when a few other stressors are thrown in on top of that? I don’t want to move. I want to hide behind this screen, play with photos and just be left alone. I don’t want to do what I need to do and right now I’m not sure how to make myself do it. The guilt that’s going along with all of this is unbearable, I actually feel sick. My kids are on holidays from school, and I’m so busy thinking about and berating myself for what I ‘should’ be doing with/for them that I’m actually doing nothing.
This guilt isn’t new. It’s something I’ve always struggled with but is being amplified 1000% right now because I feel like I’m not doing right by my kids. They’ve spent the morning watching TV, as I suspect one or two other kids have done as well. They’re absolutely fine. But Bitchface is telling me I’m pretty much the worst mother in the history of time for letting them do this. As I’ve been sitting here, I’ve been thinking about the other things that really need to happen at this point – I can’t put off cleaning bathrooms for much longer. Clothes need washing and sorting. Dogs need walking. You know, basic, normal, every day stuff. But not acceptable because it means my kids will need to entertain themselves.
How did I ever manage to come to the conclusion that my kids need me 24/7? Or that it would be good for them to have me available all the time? I didn’t read a whole lot of parenting books when they were babies, but those I did emphasised the need for attachment parenting, how important it is for kids to be with a parent as much as possible, ideally not even going into childcare till they’re 3, how much they need my time…………..Borderline me has gone into overdrive on this one. I remember feck all from when I was a kid but I can’t imagine my folks were round the clock entertainers. I’ve had therapists, friends, family, other parents all assure me that my kids are doing fine, that I’m a good mom, that it’s ok for them to spend time alone, it’s ok for them to learn to manage their own boredom. I see other kids playing outside all the time and I think it’s fantastic. I go to friend’s houses and we sit and have tea while the kids keep each other company. That’s also fantastic. So why can I not apply it to me and my kids? Why do I have these impossibly high standards for myself? It’s absolutely crippling me.