Guilty things

I’ve had a lot of guilty things rolling through my head today. Parenting things. Life things.

For one… Beanski’s post the other day really resonated with me. REALLY resonated with me.

With Hudson being sick a few weeks ago I couldn’t help but feel so inadequate in so many ways… inadequate as a mom because I couldn’t do anything to make him better. Or make him just feel better. Inadequate as an employee because I couldn’t be as reliable as I needed… or wanted… to be.

I couldn’t help but think… this sucks. I love my job. I love my kids.

I really love my kids. I really love my job.

But… I can never, will never be able to do both at the same time 100%. Something will always lack. I couldn’t help but think… this sucks…. as much as I love working… its SO hard to juggle that. Not just juggle working and then coming home and having 3 hours to spend with my kids and also in that 3 hours fit in dinner, cleaning the house, running errands and whatever else may pull at me.

On top of that normal working mom juggling and guilt is the sick guilt. If the sitters sick…. I have to scramble to find alternate care or, well, call into work. If my kids are sick… call into work. I hate feeling like a “bad” employee… I hate feeling like I’m letting people down. I hate feeling like I’m unreliable. I guess it comes with the territory of having kids. On those days I really wish I were a SAHM and didn’t have to deal with that guilt. In one sense I don’t feel like I should feel guilty for doing what’s best for my kids… for taking care of them when they’re sick… but I have other obligations that need me too. It sucks.

And then today, here I am blogging. I took a quick break from scrapbooking to blog because scrapbooking often gets thoughts rolling in my head and I just want to jot them down. Journal them.

Its sunny out. Its probably still pretty chilly (it is March… and it is Michigan) but its sunny. Pretty out. And we’re in the basement.

I feel guilty.

I feel like I should be taking advantage of these fleeting spring days because its is Michigan and its likely we’ll have snow in a few days, but then I think… I just want to chill. I just want to relax and veg out and spend time with my boys and play and scrap and watch too much tv and make a mess and clean the house and get caught up on laundry and blogging my thoughts and and and… and not feel guilty.

But I do. I feel like I’m cheatin gmy kids because we aren’t outside all day. I feel like I’m wasting away a nice spring morning and being lazy and slacking. On days like this sometimes I wish for a rain day… a day to do nothing but curl up in our pj’s and be hermits.

I guess there is always this afternoon, right? The day isn’t a total wash if we don’t get outside this morning.

And then there’s this 2nd child syndrome that’s been bugging me lately. Maybe its just because Hudson is a completely opposite child than Porter… I know I shouldn’t compare… shouldn’t compare him to Porter or to other babies his age… but I do. Silently I wonder… am I doing all that I can as a parent to help him develop? Am I doing the same things with him as I did with Porter at this age?

Porter at 9 months could say hi, mama, dada, baba and dog. At 10.5 months old he knew some animal sounds and what animals made them. He could follow simple instructions. Hudson still just makes sounds…. “gheee!” “maaa” “daaa”

Porter was pulling himself up to things, walking around furniture and pushing push toys. Hudson still won’t roll over… if he’s on his back he remains there until he gets pissed. He’s crawling now and will pull himself up to his knees to toys/things but when put standing next to something has no idea how to move his feet.

Among other developmental things (clapping, pointing, playing peek a boo, recognizing people/things) I keep thinking… its because of US. Its because he’s a second child. He’s missing out on so much one on one stuff that Porter got! I don’t sit and read with Hudson like I did with Porter. I don’t narrate every single little thing we do like I did with Porter. I have another little person in the house to take care of along with Hudson and I feel like I am giving Hudson the shaft! I worry that he’ll be behind in school. That he will be late developmentally, verbally, socially. That he won’t love books like Porter does because we don’t focus on them like I did with Porter. That he won’t be as curious and inquisitive as Porter or question things or know what things are like Porter did.

But then I think… maybe its just because he’s a different child with a different personality and different likes and feelings and interests.

I don’t know. I just don’t know. Its such a guilty sort of morning I’m having here. I hope there are others out there that can relate?

  1. Nic, we all have those days. Don't beat yourself up about it. I remember stressing when I read your blog because Gavin wasn't doing the things Porter did at the same age. Not even close…we're talking months & months after the fact. But you know what? He's totally fine and normal and developing right on track. Some kids are just different. I'm really seeing that in full force with two little ones the same age. They are so completely opposite in every way even being raise in the same home and taught the same things. Hang in there and know you're doing a GREAT job. Honestly, I admire you so much just through reading your blog. You're a great mother & those two boys are lucky to have you. Keep up the good work lady! 😉

  2. There are days (weeks?) when all I do is dwell on how bad everything sucks. Having sick kids is SO HARD and the second child guilt? I can’t tell you hard that has been. The constant comparing, constantly feeling like I am only meeting both of their BASIC needs. It sucks. Then all of a sudden I wake up one day and I feel better. My “I’m doing the best that I honestly can and that is going to have to be enough” attitude comes back and I feel better for a while. And then they get sick again or one of them gets a new tooth and quits sleeping or Renee hits her brother in the face for the fifteen time and I go back to moping. I hope your sunny days come back soon!

  3. I think what you’re feeling is normal and I also think it’s normal that the 2nd child does things slower/differently than the first. My oldest (a girl) did everything on the earlier side…crawling by 6 mts, walking at 10 mths, carrying on complete conversations (using correct tense) by 2 yrs, etc. My 2nd (a boy) didn’t crawl until 9 mths, walk until almost 15 mths and at almost 2 yrs only says a handful of words consistently. I know I didn’t work with him the same way I did my daughter…I just didn’t have the time, esp after learning I was pregnant again when he was 10 mths old, but I also think it’s partly his personality. He is way more laidback than she is and seems happier to let us do things for him. She, on the other hand, was very independent and always trying to move on to the next thing. Try not worry. In the end, they’ll both be fine. 🙂

  4. I feel the same way all the time. I have one and I work and I think I should be doing better. I should be at home with him taking care of him, playing with him, putting him down for a nap, but then I think I am being a good mom because I am doing the best I can and from the looks of things you are too. Keep up the good work! I love reading your blog and can relate on so many levels!

  5. haha – okay, first of all, my second kid is going to be TOTALLY screwed if we’re going by how much time the kid gets vs. how fast they develop. max has been in 1-on-1 care his whole life, and he’s JUST starting to talk. barely. and the kid gets read to AT LEAST an hour a day, no joke. and, he didn’t walk until he was like 15 months?, despite constantly having someone there to grant his every wish to try. after some hoping on my part that he would just HURRY UP already and catch up to everyone else’s kid (like denise, i have always thought porter was WAY more advanced than max is – not that they are the same age, but you know, just ‘knowing’ him or going back and reading), i’ve come to grips with the fact that they just develop at their own pace, no matter how much effort you put in. obviously some of it comes down to parenting (i.e. kids that have never seen a book in their life) but, i think you just have different kids. wait until hudson is three, then see where he is. i bet he’ll be just as far along as p was with the development.as far as the working mom thing – it’s hard to work. i’m sure it’s hard to be a SAHM. sometimes, i wish i could do the SAHM thing for a year or so, just to see which is really harder, or hear from someone that has legitimately done both. i like to work and i think it makes me appreciate the time i spend with max that much more. it also gives me built-in ‘me time’ that helps keep me sane. so there are good parts. if you think about it, if you just stayed home, would you REALLY be giving 100% to your kids, 100% of the the time? probably not. does everyone that works and doesn’t have kids give 100% to their job, never slack off, even for a minute? i think as long as you’re trying the best you can, in whatever role you’re doing, you’re doing okay. your kids know you love them and it really is about the quality of time you spend with them. i see on your blog how much fun stuff you guys do together, the projects you do, places you go. you are a GREAT mom and they are lucky to have you.

  6. First, the fact that Porter was saying so many words at 9.5 months is scary LOL Dude, that is one advanced kid. We have the opposite, Morgan is a laid back kid and Callie is a go getter. Everyone said Morgan didn’t crawl until 9.5 months because he was so big but no, Callie is the same size and crawled at 7 months. It’s totally personality. He was happy to sit and play – she can’t stay still for more than 2 seconds (which drives a person to drink). I’ve totally been going though the same thing with getting ready to go back to work. I’m in a weird funk because it feels like you can’t do one thing good enough because you are so busy trying to juggle too many. I don’t want to stay home and not work but I don’t want to miss out on my kids growing up. I don’t want to have a nasty dirty house but I want to play with my babies. I don’t want to be too tired to even talk to my husband but after working/kids, I’d rather just stare at the TV. You can’t win!I had a total meltdown last night in regards to this topic – must be something in the air right now.

  7. As far as the 2nd child syndrome… I can relate already! I find myself stressing over how in the world I’ll have enough energy/time to treat Sofia the same way I treated Tiegan as a baby, and to teach her the same things. T seems so smart and ahead of her time, I don’t want Sofie to feel inferior if I can’t work w/ her and teach her as much as I did Tiegan. I worry so much about being able to treat the kids equally. Anyway, I think the guilt is something completely normal. You’re a nurturing spirit and it comes with the territory – just remember to spoil yourself by vegging out once in a while. it’s good for you. 🙂

  8. nic-gotta love the guilty mom feeling. i dont think that it ever goes away. i dont work that much and still feel guilty when i am leaving reyna. i have felt guilty about something when we were spending an entire day together doing something fun. its never ending. you are a good mom!!! hudson and porter are both loved very much. i hope you guys have a great time this weekend. enjoy the time with the boys and ryan. call me when you get home. i would love to get together next week sometime. 🙂

  9. Guitly, guilty…oh hell, that's my middle name! I hate to tell you it'll even be worse(maybe not worse, just more…) when you have your “own” classroom & you start your Master's degree…. those lovely things called weekends, ha! pretty much non-existent! Not trying to make you feel more pressure about the future than you already do, but it just doesn't ever seem to get any easier…kwim? I keep wondering when I'm going to have more “Mom time”.As for Hudson, it's funny because Donnie and Nolan are total opposite personality wise & developmentally, much like Porter and Hudson. Nolan does things much quicker than Donnie did…and I do much LESS with Nolan than Donnie. Not that I intentionally do much less, but it's simply the second child syndrome…Ahhhh,*sigh* such is life. I continously tell myself “I'm doing the best I know how and it's all for them, I hope my kids now and appreciate that someday…”

  10. I totally feel your pain (or guilt as it may be- lol). I feel like I do a half ass job of everything and not a good job at anything. Such is being a mom. At least we have eachother, right? 🙂

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