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Rita Chidinma: Dealing with Mom Guilt

You’re enough. Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.

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Have you ever felt like you weren’t doing enough for your kids? Probably you had to leave your few months old at a daycare center so that you could work and earn some money. Or perhaps you provide but you feel it’s not enough – you feel like you should do more. You want the absolute best for your kids and despite all your efforts, you look around at other kids and feel like you’re falling short, somehow. You look at all the Instagram and picture-perfect kids and wonder where you’re not getting it right.

But young mom, do you know that your kids love you unconditionally? Like you could literally be doing absolutely nothing for them and they’d still love you, just for being you. So how much more when you’re doing your absolute best in giving them a good life?

My kids were on midterm break this week and I had to cancel all my appointments just to be able to stay home with them. Did I feel bad about not getting anything done or having to alter my plans? Yes. But at the same time, I reasoned that I would feel even worse if other kids were home resting and they had to hang out at other people’s houses for the few days. I am learning every day that parenting is much more than paying school fees and providing basic needs. With this, I’ve come to the realization that the greatest commodity you can give your kids is time. I mean, we could spend our lives chasing monetary gains and personal/professional development, but not at the expense of our kids.

So if you’re a mom and you’re reading this, you’re doing your absolute best and all those things you’re worried about will sort themselves out with time. If you have to provide and you’re always laden with guilt for leaving your newborn or the other kids, focus on getting your baby/kids the best caregivers instead of worrying about things you can’t change. Ensure the caregiver is someone you can actually trust and ensure you spend as much time as you can with him/her to get to know them better. We all just have 24hrs in a day and time can’t extend for anyone, so all we can do is to make the most of it.

Recently, I read about a nursing mother who was in tears and couldn’t be consoled because her nipples got infected and she was advised to stop breastfeeding her little baby. She found it so difficult whenever her baby cried and wanted to breastfeed but was given formula instead. I couldn’t help but sympathize with her.

As a young mom, sometimes it’s inevitable to feel this guilt; but, guess what? You’re doing great! Learn to ignore some of these ignorant advice people dish out sometimes. They’re obviously not wearing the shoes, so how can they possibly know where it’s hurting? Don’t also forget that if you’re insecure, it’ll tell on your kids one way or another.

You’re enough. Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise.

Rita Chidinma is a Post graduate researcher at Federal University of Technology, Owerri with a passion for creative writing and fiction. She is a highly intuitive and deep thinker who uses writing as a means of self expression. In her free time she loves reading, writing and writing some more. She is a wife and mother to three kids. She can be reached on Instagram and Twitter (@theritzz_) or through email, [email protected]

2 Comments

  1. Olawunmi

    March 14, 2020 at 7:45 pm

    Thank you so much for this post. It is realy comforting

    • Precious

      August 22, 2020 at 2:08 pm

      Wow,this is really uplifting and lots of people are actually going through this but can’t speak to anyone….Thanks Rita

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