Being a human is hard, being a parent is stressful, being an anxious parent is sometimes too much!
As many of you know I ventured into uncharted territory this weekend. I decided to take my book to the Iowa Horse Fair to promote it to a crowd of people that didn’t know me. That meant leaving home Friday at 7:00 AM and not returning until 7:00 PM Sunday. While that might not seem like a big deal for most, it was huge for me. Remember, I’m the girl that hated to stay away from home as a child/teenager.
My family came down to attend a rodeo with me Friday night, stayed in the hotel to swim and attend the horse fair with plans to head back home Saturday night. This was a fantastic plan up until the moment Ellie put on her swimsuit to go for her first dip in the pool, I noticed a red mark on her tummy, looked closer and realized she had hives. My first reaction was, “oh crap it must be bedbugs!” After a quick examination of Grace, who slept in the same bed as Ellie, we realized she had none of the red marks. As we retraced our steps through the week, night and morning of we determined she had had a lot of citrus. She’s had citrus before but we did all comment that she had had a large amount. Luckily, because I’m an anxious mom, I had Benadryl with me and we gave her some which seemed to ease the hives.
Fast forward to a successful afternoon at the horse fair and my family hitting the road to travel home. My niece joined me at the horse fair and we had a great time laughing with kids that came to our booth and visiting with each other. As we were finishing up at the vendor show for the night I got a call from Rob that the hives were back with a vengeance. If you are at all like me you know what happened next, my legs went numb, my arms went numb and my heart felt like it was going to fall out of my chest.
Does she have hives because I’m not home?
Does he know what to do if she has trouble breathing?
Will he even hear her if she has trouble breathing with her sleeping?
Why isn’t he taking her to the doctor?
Rob eased my mind by telling me he had spoken to our friend that is a nurse, asked for advice and he had even picked up some over the counter meds for her. My body started to calm down as I talked myself into the fact that he would do just fine, it wasn’t my fault that she had hives and he could parent her just as well as I can. As I tried to fall asleep in the hotel room that night I kept telling myself she was going to be fine, at the time she fell asleep she was having no trouble breathing, and it was just something on her skin.
Fast forward through a restless night of sleep and another phone call that the hives were back and worse. Cue numb feeling in arms, legs, and lump in throat. I began talking to myself, using my name and telling myself that it would be fine, kids get hives. I will admit though I couldn’t stop the feeling that it was my fault because I wanted to go away and promote my book. That was the mom guilt/anxiety kicking into overdrive. I know I’m not the only one to experience this, but man it’s a crappy feeling!
Why do we as mom’s or parents get this guilty feeling? We HAVE to take time for ourselves. Especially when we give, give, give all of the time.
My entire way home from Des Moines I couldn’t turn the negative thoughts off in my mind about it, if I wouldn’t have went to promote the book she wouldn’t have gotten hives and on and on!
Guess what? It’s Thursday and she still has hives and I am still an anxious mom.
I will repeat what I have said before, I am doing this work so that my girls know that they too can dream big and huge! But, that doesn’t mean that I don’t deal with the mom guilt and anxious feelings that many of you may be dealing with, too!
Are you an anxious human? How do you deal with parenting guilt?
From the gravel road-