I try to start each day anew and in a good mood. Sometimes this goes my way, sometimes not. Getting Sonya up and to school in the morning is a feat with in itself. This week has been particularly challenging, because she was off for spring break last week. So before 7:30am most mornings, I've already lost my temper with her and most likely raised my voice, if not yelled at her. Guilt.
Then she goes off to school and I have the younger two. If I've managed to get up early enough to work out, I'm feeling pretty good. If I haven't, I work out around 9:30 which requires me to occupy Lana and Georgia with, what else, the TV. Guilt. I feel like I should be doing something with them, but I NEED to work out. It's something I have to do to feel better about myself, and you know, so I don't weigh 250 pounds. Especially with the sweet tooth I have. I've managed to combat this a bit by getting a double jogging stroller, so at least some days they can BE part of my workout. This does alleviate some of that guilt anyway.
Lunch and naps are usually fine, but the days I decide to write, I feel guilty that I'm not doing something with Sonya. I try to write quickly so I can spend some time with her, but it doesn't always work out that way. As I write this now... GUILT.
Then the end of the day is nothing but a flurry of feeling guilty, because I start to lose my cool as the day goes on. Andy doesn't get home in time to help with bath and bedtime on most days, so sometimes is starts to really wear on me. Most days I'm fine, but then there's those days when I haven't had enough sleep from the night before, or I'm having my "lady time". Those days I turn into mean mommy. I don't like being mean mommy. I don't hit them or anything, although if I'm being honest, sometimes I do want to. I can't imagine the guilt I'd feel then.
There is also the fact that, although I love my girls very much, there are times when I really don't like them. This makes me feel most guilty of all. Especially because I didn't feel this way when they were younger, and therefore don't really feel that way toward Georgia. Well not right now anyway. I don't want to like one of my girls more than another, but I guess there are times when you just do, because one may be easier than another. This kills me. I do realize it will probably change over time. It already has a few times. Still it's something I feel constantly guilty about.
The feeling guilty about not spending enough time with them is just an overall theme for me, as it is for most parents, I suppose. For those parents that work, I'm sure they have the guilt for being at work and not spending more time with the kids. Don't despair though, because it's not really any easier when you're home. At least if you have more than one kid. I have so much to do throughout the day, that it's hard to find time to sit down and play a game or run around outside with them. There's the making all the meals and the cleanup after, grocery shopping, Target shopping, going to gymnastics, picking up from school, bath time, story time, all these things add up and leave little time for the girls during the day. I've been trying my best to change that just a bit. I recently read somewhere that spending even 15 minutes a day playing with them makes a huge difference. I figured I can fit 15 minutes in somewhere, whether it's hide and seek, coloring, games or whatever. They just want the time with me and I do want to give it to them.
This guilt builds up on me all day long that after I put them to bed at night and I have a glass of wine, I wish I would have done more with them. I wish I would have been more patient, would have been less annoyed, would have taught them more. I know they're not this young forever and eventually the guilt will turn to regret for not paying attention during this time. (Cue "Cats In The Cradle") So for any of you parents reading this and nodding along, know that you're not alone. I just wish someone would have forewarned me about the guilt before I signed up for his gig, so I could have at least been prepared. I can just blame my mom for not telling me. Then she can feel guilty too.