Tuesday, March 18, 2008

"Mom's guilt" - when does it end?

From the very beginning of life as a mom, even as a prenatal mom, the guilt starts to creep in.

Am I eating the right things? In my case no, my doctor told me to stop eating so much sugar since I was gaining so much weight. At 37 weeks I had already gained more than 50 pounds. I told the nurse to just stop telling me my weight after that. (And Lucas went to 41 weeks!)

Is it enough to do the prerequisite childbirth prep class from the local hostpital? I cajoled my husband into the childbirth yoga for partners all-day workshop. None of which I really used since I went for the epidural ASAP.

Is he still hungry? He was an avid eater. I nursed and pumped and nursed and pumped. I had enough breast milk in the freezer at any point to feed a small army. I was militant about not using formula for as long as I could, which was about 11 months.
Is he cold? I put a hat or hood on him every time I felt a slight breeze in the air, also because he looked so cute in hats. The day that he could, he started yanking those hats off his head. He won't come close to one these days.

Fast forward four years, because I don't want to recount all the other times I've felt guilty about something I should have done, should have done differently, or shouldn't have done at all.

Today Lucas was one of the last two kids to be picked up from school (more guilt!). Luckily the other kid was his best friend Jack. Lucas and Jack were playing, but also plotting a night of fine dining at TRex, one of our family's favorite spots. They may have expected that we would take them out because the last time they were the two last kids Jack's mom and I decided to go out for Mexican food.

Anyway, not because of any lack of effort on the parts of Lucas and Jack, we decided that we would plan a dinner at TRex for another night, but that it wasn't going to happen on this particular night.

On the drive home the majority of the conversation was centered around why we weren't going to TRex and when we could plan for it. I told him that most of the time when you go to dinner with someone else's family, you have to plan for it.

We pulled up in front of our house and Lucas got out and closed his door, which is when I heard him scream. I ran over and his finger was stuck in the door. I opened it quickly and blood was pouring out of his finger.

After we got him inside, cleaned up, and assessed that his finger wasn't broken, my first thought was, "Why didn't I take him to TRex?" For dinner we fed him anything he wanted, which was cheese, apple, almonds, dry cereal, and yes, a popsicle. I felt bad for him, he was really in pain, plus the popsicle helped to assuage the guilt, just a little.

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