Now I have guilt

My daughter has a presentation as school today. It’s her first speech but she’s already a pro. She’s outgoing and not easily intimidated so she’s going to do wonderfully. Today a note came home from the teacher stating the requirements for the presentation and inviting any parents that wanted to come. Here comes the guilt part- I don’t want to go. I helped her write her speech, helped her practice it and came up with her costume. I’ve seen her speech. and I’m tired and hurting and want to stay home and rest. Of course a bunch of the other parents are going to show up and make me look like the lazy parent that I am and my daughter is going to be mad at me for not showing.  This is where having a chronic illness and being a parent really makes life difficult. I want to be that super involved Pinterest parent, but I just don’t have enough energy to do everything. I prefer to save my energy for when my kids are home with me.  That way from the hours of 3-8 pm my kids have 100% of my attention and energy, but that is hard for my kids to understand.

When you get diagnosed with a chronic illness they should hand out a pamphlet, “How to deal with the guilt.” No one tells you how many people you are going to let down, how many people will be disappointed you can’t meet their expectations, and how horrible you will feel about not being enough. It’s easy to say that we shouldn’t feel guilty, but it’s hard to implement that in our every day lives. When I have a pair of big brown eyes staring up at me asking me why I can’t do something the other moms do, it’s hard. It’s just another battle that those of us with a chronic illness have to fight on a daily basis.

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7 thoughts on “Now I have guilt

  1. You have to do what you have to do. Maybe someone can video her speech so she can share with you. Big gentle hug to you. I'm sure the kids are understanding more than you know. We like to beat ourselves up of our downfalls don't we?

  2. Those of us who have dealt with chronic disease are often our own worst enemies. We guilt ourselves into doing things that cause even more pain and down time or we beat ourselves up for not doing things we used to do before the illness.
    I never had children and did not have to face the choices you face. However I did teach other people's children and appreciate your effort on your daughter's project. Your choice to spend your energy with your kids seems a wise one to me.

  3. Oh my gosh! Where have you been and why am I just now finding your blog!!?!? I'm reading your posts and screaming "This is SO me!" I'm 37. I have a son who just finished kindergarten and another 3 year old son. I went to college and grad school, had a successful career, but for the past 7 years I've been on disability for my fibro and bi-polar depression. Before it got bad, I was the classic over-achiever. Today, even though I accept that I can't work, I still set the bar high for myself to be Super-mom, Super-wife, Community Volunteer Queen, Betty Crocker and Martha Stewart all in one. That's what other stay-at-home Mom's do, right? I forget that NOT working and being a full time stay at home Mom IS working. I don't have a choice as to whether I work or not but we don't get sick days or leaves of absences for being a Mom. It's easier to accept that for a career, but not when it comes to your family. If I miss one little school program because I'm hurting and tired, I feel like I'm failing. If I had to cancel volunteering at school, I feel like a failure. My house is always a wreck. My husband has to cook and clean most of the time. It makes me feel like a failure and a burden. Even though I know I have limitations, I still feel guilt and can't seem to accept the fact that it's ok that I can't do everything I want to do. I can't seem to lower my expectations of myself. . . because it's hard to let go of the person I think I am supposed to be and realistically accept who I can be. Sometimes I AM that Super-Mom, but many times I can't, yet expect myself to be all the time. It's especially difficult when you know you are disappointing someone or that someone else is having to pull your weight for you. I relate so much to your stories and am so happy that I found your blog. I wish I could reach out and give you a huge hug right now to thank you.

    1. I'm feeling the same guilt today because we had a huge family thing at our house this weekend and it just about killed me. Now I'm too tired to clean up and we're supposed to be leaving on vacation soon. So my poor husband gets stuck with a lot of the work and it makes me feel so guilty! It's so hard being a sick mom and living with with the extra guilt that it comes with. Thanks for your comment, it's good to know I'm not the only one that struggles with this!

  4. Oh my gosh! Where have you been and why am I just now finding your blog!!?!? I'm reading your posts and screaming "This is SO me!" I'm 37. I have a son who just finished kindergarten and another 3 year old son. I went to college and grad school, had a successful career, but for the past 7 years I've been on disability for my fibro and bi-polar depression. Before it got bad, I was the classic over-achiever. Today, even though I accept that I can't work, I still set the bar high for myself to be Super-mom, Super-wife, Community Volunteer Queen, Betty Crocker and Martha Stewart all in one. That's what other stay-at-home Mom's do, right? I forget that NOT working and being a full time stay at home Mom IS working. I don't have a choice as to whether I work or not but we don't get sick days or leaves of absences for being a Mom. It's easier to accept that for a career, but not when it comes to your family. If I miss one little school program because I'm hurting and tired, I feel like I'm failing. If I had to cancel volunteering at school, I feel like a failure. My house is always a wreck. My husband has to cook and clean most of the time. It makes me feel like a failure and a burden. Even though I know I have limitations, I still feel guilt and can't seem to accept the fact that it's ok that I can't do everything I want to do. I can't seem to lower my expectations of myself. . . because it's hard to let go of the person I think I am supposed to be and realistically accept who I can be. Sometimes I AM that Super-Mom, but many times I can't, yet expect myself to be all the time. It's especially difficult when you know you are disappointing someone or that someone else is having to pull your weight for you. I relate so much to your stories and am so happy that I found your blog. I wish I could reach out and give you a huge hug right now to thank you.

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