Mommy Guilt Doesn’t Win

Today is the last weekday of my vacation, technically.  Tomorrow we are headed out of town for the holiday long weekend.

I complain every day that I dislike my job for how little time it leaves me to spend with my kids and my family.  Yet every day this week I found reasons to sequester in my room to “study” for an upcoming exam, take a nap, have coffee with a friend I haven’t seen in a while, go for lunch with my husband, etc.  I have spent some time with my kids – taking them to their various lessons through the week, dropping the little one off at preschool, walking the big one to the bus stop in the morning and waiting at the door to wave to the bus driver when they drop him off at lunch.  I’ve (kind of) eaten breakfast with them every morning, walked to the park with them once or twice… basically, I have spent much more time with them this week than I do on normal weeks, but I still haven’t make it my priority to spend every minute that I can with them.  In fact, one day they even drove me beyond crazy!

So my question is, why do I not feel more inclined to spend my time off with my kids?  Even today, for example, while the big kid is at school and the little one is with the Nanny, I am sitting in a Starbucks sipping coffee, blogging, and then hopefully studying.  My goal is to go home and see them after lunch, take them to the park, and then who knows what, until it’s time to leave for our road trip.

IMG_6336Is there something strange about my difficult dichotomy?  When I work, I complain that I don’t have enough time to spend with my kids, but then I have a week off work, and I don’t spend all my time with them.  And, I can’t even say that the guilt works because my older kid is always saying, “Mom, why do you always have to study/go for coffee/go to an appointment…?” Yet, I still go out.  I know they want to spend time with me, and I want to spend time with them too.  But I don’t know why I feel so… exhausted…

8 thoughts on “Mommy Guilt Doesn’t Win

    • Hear, hear. I regret not having more time with my kids, but I’ve reached a point of overall burnout such that–despite my real chagrin at not having as much time with them as I’d like–I yearn for a little time alone more than for time together with anyone right now.

      I’ve actually stopped blogging for the moment and made most of my posts private to carve out a little space somewhere for myself. I know there’ll be a day where I feel like I’ve had enough time to myself to feel more joy and less burnout at time spent with others (even those most beloved to me!), but right now … I have a physical yearning for a little space, physical and otherwise. I’m taking steps to get myself closer and wish I could take them faster. Looking for silver linings to keep me afloat in the meantime, and happy to find many.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. I don’t have kids but I do see the same phenomenon in myself. When I’m working, I complain that I don’t get enough time with my family, boyfriend and friends. When I am not working, I often sequester myself doing my own things: reading, running, writing, SLEEPING. Maybe we don’t want our lives to revolve around two options: work or family. Maybe we try to take control of our own lives by having some time for ourselves, too. Isn’t that something we deserve? We become better mothers, daughters, partners, friends that way: by being well-nourished souls. No?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m an introvert, so being a stay-at-home homeschooling mama really drains me. The little time I have w/o my kids is wonderful… but of course I think about them, because they’re my kids! I will admit, though, that I don’t typically spend enough time away from them that I miss them. 😛

    There are so many things on our proverbial plates, that it’s impossible to get it all done. If we’re focusing on one thing, the other thing(s) get overlooked… if you’re at work, there are the kids and housework and other projects… if you’re at home and spending time with your kids, there are personal things you’d rather get done… it’s never-ending.

    I used to work part-time and brought my then baby with me, but I felt like I wasn’t getting stuff done at home. Now, I feel like all I do is cook and clean! And I wish I were bringing in some money. I think we need to learn balance, being content with where we are at. But of course, I’m the first who needs to take my own advice.

    Liked by 1 person

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