I know all moms feel “mommy guilt” at some point. Monday was my day.
It’s spring break for Clay, but since this is one of the busiest weeks of the year at work I couldn’t take time off. Chase is busier than ever at work right now too, so he’s only able to take Friday off. Clay’s school offered a spring break camp, so we signed him up. He was fine with going. Camp means he gets to play sports all day long, and there is nothing he’d rather do.
The summer camp is always full, but apparently I underestimated how many parents either take time off work this week or find other child care arrangements. Chase called me after he dropped Clay off Monday and told me he was the only kid there. Now, clearly, other kids showed up just minutes after he did, and it meant he got one-on-one time with his favorite teacher. But for some reason I pictured him sitting there all alone. I felt terrible and immediately looked up the date of my work event next year, to confirm it’s not the same week as spring break (it’s not, phew!).
Still feeling guilty, I picked him up early. I walked in, feeling nervous that he’d complain about being the first kid there. Instead, he rushed over to show me the mohawk in his hair that Ms. Tracia helped him style with water. He told me he couldn’t wait to bring his football helmets the next day to finish a project with Mr. Brendon.
Crisis averted, the guilt in this case was unwarranted. As it usually is. We put so much pressure on ourselves as moms (and dads) to be there for every moment and feel guilty when we can’t.
Maybe you’re there now. Feeling guilty that you shouldn’t be at that yoga class or pedicure or girls night because you should be home with your kids. Or maybe you rush home from work, not even going to the bathroom before you leave the office because you want to see your kids that instant. I’ve been there. But at the end of the day when you walk in the door from work or the gym or the grocery store, your kids are happy to see you and that’s all that matters. The kids are all right. Now we need to let go of the guilt.