You know something? Being a parent sucks. There’s this whole culture out there where people think it’s ok to not only impart their unwanted advice, but that they also feel free to judge the choices you make as a parent. It’s hard making choices for the small people in your life. Suddenly, you’re responsible for the health and well being of a child, and there are so many choices and decisions you have to make for them. Then there’s the unrelenting world of advice. Mother’s groups, online forums, books, tv programs – just to name a few. And then you have parenting styles. Seriously, no wonder it’s overwhelming at times.
There’s so much pressure to be the perfect parent. I’m not perfect. I freely admit that I have so many imperfections and perhaps the choices we’ve made aren’t the ideal or mainstream ones. However, my kids are happy, healthy and that to me is all that matters.
I’ve been judged for the methods that my husband and I chose – we’ve had people accuse us of many things – neglect because we choose no technology, hazards because we chose baby led weaning, telling us we feed them wrong and we should be doing this, I shouldn’t be doing volunteer work because they grow up so fast, even trying to tell us we had our children too late and that that’s the reason we had complications. (Let me tell you now, it wasn’t. Their problems can happen to ANY identical twin pregnancy where they share a placenta).
I recently had the opportunity to go away for 2 days with my sister to a spa. For the first time in 2 years, I didn’t have to worry about my kids for 2 whole days. Of course, in the lead up, I had to worry about packing their bags, making sure they had clothing and stuff to take to Oma’s house, that their papa had food and nourishment as well, and that I had my own bags to pack!
Let me tell you something – after the past 2 years, I have never looked forward to time alone like I did those past 2 days. No whining, no worrying about balancing meals, no washing, nothing. Just me. To be honest, I did wonder if I could actually be away from them for that many days. After all, I’m a full time, stay at home mum. 24 hours a day, I’m with my kids. And you know something – this sucks. I can’t pee alone, I can eat alone, and I don’t get any time alone, except the occasional late night supermarket dash.
So I left for my 2 days. I swam, I enjoyed steam rooms, water massage, whirlpools, jacuzzis & meditation, and I didn’t have anyone demanding my attention. I drank cocktails and ate Mexican food without having to give anyone a taste, a bite, or a sip. I wandered through cobblestone streets into narrow little shops full of breakable things and didn’t have to give a hoot about feet kicking, or not being able to get my buggy into a shop. I did think of them, and I hoped they were having fun – but here’s the part where people will be scandalised.
I didn’t miss them.
Yep. You read that right. I did not miss my kids. For the first time in 2 years, I was free to do what I wanted. And I loved every minute of it.
I do not feel one bit guilty about it.
I don’t feel guilty for putting myself first, for the first time in 2 years. I don’t feel guilty for staying out and drinking mojitos. I don’t feel guilty for spending money on myself. I don’t feel guilty for wearing a swimsuit in a public place on my flabby, pasty post twin body. I don’t feel guilty for leaving them for 2 days with their grandparents whilst I left the country and had a rest. Heck, I don’t even feel guilty for not shaving my legs before I left for this break and letting the breeze blow through the forest.
And what’s more. I am not going to let anyone make me feel guilty about any choices I make. Not now, not ever. I know I’m doing the right thing in my mind with my kids and my life. They’re my mistakes to make, so I’ll embrace the good and the bad, the successes and the failures, and I’m not going to feel guilty about it. And noone is going to make me feel guilty!