I’ve been surprised to find that the tug-of-war about whether I should stop breastfeeding and when is as strong today, after having my third child, as it was years ago when I had my first child. We do a mixture of nursing and formula, but am I being selfish if I switch over to formula completely? Is breast best or is fed best? This tennis match of justification is exhausting.
When I was working, I was sad that I couldn’t stop to play with the kids when they asked and when I did have the time, I didn’t have the energy. Now that I’m staying home, I miss what having another income afforded us, even though 2/3 of my income went to childcare. Should we have a nanny? Which extracurriculars should we choose? There is no end to the scenarios fighting to keep you from enjoying the present.
Here’s what I’m doing to ditch the guilt & make the most of my time:
1. I turned off the notifications for social media and uninstalled the apps.
Instead of getting a noisy pop-up when someone messages or replies I get nothing at all. When I think about the app then I’ll open it and go through the notifications. I am in those apps significantly less than I was when they were theoretically knocking on my door. Do I need to follow 12 mom blogs with perfectly organized playrooms, pristine kitchens, and white couches? I think we all know the answer and now I don’t.
2. I spend more uninterrupted time with my kids.
We’re building forts and reading stories and most recently, baking. I used to cringe at the messiness of letting them help me, but now we’re making messes and memories.
3) Rediscovering what I like.
Spending time outside and journaling, listening to an audiobook, car dance parties, and spending time having fun with my husband, my family, and my friends. Making time for what I enjoy has been phenomenal for my overall happiness.
Mom guilt has no place here.