Ok, it’s not just moms that feel guilt, maybe a better way to put it would be just ‘parent guilt’. Every single parent, whether they have special needs kids or typical kids have felt this. If you’re anything like me, you feel it daily. I read a quote once that said “the very fact that you worry about being a good mom, means you are one”. I hope its true, because I worry everyday.
Parenting is so hard. Some days it drains every ounce of you, and you think you can’t possibly get up and do it again the next day. Thankfully, we are resilient like that, because we do. When we are tired, we are sad, worried, stressed, and pulled in every direction, we still manage to get up and do the things we need to do. I can tell you, some days I don’t want to get out of bed. Some days I just want to lay there, and have a pity party. Cry because I feel alone in this village. I have amazing friends, and family. Our family lives far away, but FaceTimes with us daily, and the family that is close helps when they can, of course. It still gets lonely. The fact that even though you have read every possible thing you can, it doesn’t answer your questions. The sinking feeling of not knowing what the next year brings for Mason, some days washes over me, and I cant function.
I know what it feels like to lay in bed at night, and go over all of the things you said, did, or didn’t do that day, and it eats you up. You promise you will wake in the morning and make different choices, be a more gentle parent, be more present, play more.. whatever it is you feel like you didn’t do.
I try so hard to make all of my kids feel loved, appreciated, and respected always. Some days though, when Mason is having a hard day, I gravitate towards giving him the majority of my attention. I get quick to anger with my other two. While truly they aren’t doing anything wrong, they just are capable of doing more for themselves at that moment. I cater to Mason on his bad days, because I carry him a lot, or I help him walk, and make sure he is comfortable, and has water, and all of the things.
Not giving Sydney and Maddox the same kind of attention on Masons’ hard days, doesn’t make me a bad a mom. It makes me a tired, and worried mom. Don’t get me wrong, every night when I lay my head down, I think about all the ways I could’ve done better, all the things I should’ve said ‘yes’ to. It consumes me sometimes. No one tells you, or warns you how much you will overwhelmingly, heart bursting, aching kind of love, love these little humans, while you simultaneously need a break from them. While you worry about how your bad parenting days are affecting them.
Can we all just agree that parenting guilt is real? That we hype up other parents, and let them know how amazing they’re doing? Be the person who brings that bit of reassurance to their day. It takes a village right? We may not all have a village in person, but we can be a village online.
Moms Dads, you are doing great. Its OK to worry day after day about children, especially when they have special needs. It’s ok to beat yourself up a little. Just remember, it’s not just you. Reach out to someone, you may be able to change the direction of someone else’s day.
You are not a bad parent, you are having a bad day. Its ok to feel it, validate it, and give yourself some grace. Bad days pass.
With so much love until tomorrow,