5 Times I Wasn’t Honest About Motherhood and Why It’s Better When I Am
As a mom, I often experience “mom guilt.” It’s the feeling I’m not doing enough; it’s the heaviness that wakes me in the middle of the night to a flurry of parental worries. Somewhere along the way, I was taught to be totally selfless in my role as a mother, and while my all-in approach creates stability in my family that I fully embrace, by the end of the day, I feel exhausted. My heart feels stretched thin like a rubber band I’d use to seal a big bag of potato chips. Giving my time and attention to my crew is only a part of who I am, but sometimes my mom guilt gets the best of me and I’m not honest with myself as a mother.
Here are five instances in which I wasn’t honest about motherhood — and why it’s better when I’m being real with myself and my family.
1I Have Pretended I Could Do It All — I Should Have Delegated Tasks
I struggle to do all the things and with this overwhelming desire to be always available, I feel awkward delegating. I mean, what if I miss an all-important conversation with my son about Minecraft?! Still, remaining in constant physical and emotional motion is what causes my depleted feelings. Being honest and asking for help takes the pressure off and creates a healthy team mindset for our family which is, well … helpful.
2I Have Kept Feelings to Myself — I Should Have Leaned on My Friends
I can easily get stuck in a “parenting bubble.” Holding onto my good and bad days only contributes to my feelings of isolation, and with all the busyness of daily life, it’s easy to overlook that talking it out with friends is a must for maintaining a positive and well-rounded outlook.
3I Have Pushed Through Fatigue — I Should Have Rested
Motherhood makes me sleepy. Whether it’s due to making daily family magic happen or late-night worries, there are some days I feel exhausted to my core. Should I ask my husband to clock in so that I can clock out? Um, yes. When I don’t listen to my body, it creates issues later. But when I trust my family to be there for me, it creates space for unconditional support.
4I’ve Ignored My Instincts — I Should Have Taken Breaks
There are moments I’ve felt my patience run low and have felt the urge to call a timeout. Then I ignore my instincts and tell myself I can totally handle any situation — but am I at my best when I’m running on empty? Taking even the smallest of breaks when overwhelmed helps me stay grounded and shows my 8-year-old how to emotionally regulate in a healthy way. Now, if I could just get him to eat his healthy vegetables, too.
5I Have Said ‘I’m Fine’ When I Wasn’t — I Should Have Spoken My Truth
Being honest with my feelings models honesty on all levels. So, I’m doing my best to let my truth (and not the guilt) be the overreaching force that guides, so my son can grow up feeling comfortable speaking his truth.
The Bottom Line
When I choose to be honest with my family, I feel closer to them — and to myself. In those vulnerable moments, I show my crew how best to support me and in doing so, I feel appreciated, too. I suppose in some cases my mom guilt' isn't all that bad. I mean, it does shine a light on what I’m valuing most, and I can use this to guide me to my next parenting steps, but let’s be honest: Honesty is always the best policy, especially when it comes to being with yourself.