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Dealing with Guilt

The previous post I wrote a few days ago and just got around to finishing.  This one has been a long time coming and might be a wordy nightmare, but I warned you 😉

As much as I love being a mother and a wife, as time goes on I find myself feeling increasingly more guilty about things: am I spending enough time with Evan?  Am I making time for my husband?  That run could have been longer.  Should I go back to work?  Really Jen, fit in some more time for fitness.  Did I just eat that cookie? Nope I had 4.  Who am I? I don’t do that.  – Yikes.

These feelings of anxiety just happen to be getting worse and worse as we draw closer to me returning to work.  I feel guilty that I need to leave my new son for hours and hours.  I’m simply not ready.  Another thing I feel guilty about?  If I feel guilty already for leaving him with my mother in law while I’m at work, how am I going to spend additional time away from him in order to work on my fitness goals? *sigh*

Life is about growing and adjusting and sometimes I feel what I do isn’t good enough.  That is when I know that I need to hit the pavement a little more, or roll out the yoga mat.  A healthy physical lifestyle is essential to dealing with these feelings, but isn’t it funny how those feelings zap the energy right out of you?  Or how about attempting to fit in, time with baby, time with hubby, time at work, time with my ipod running/workingout, time on my yoga mat (essential), time cooking, oh and lets write a blog while I’m at it… There are only 24 PRECIOUS HOURS in a day.

Lately I find myself clinging to my newborn even more.  How is time FLYING by?  Is he really 8 weeks old? Oh yeah, he is.  Is he slowly (and I mean rapidly) growing out of his 0-3 month clothing. Why haven’t I lost all my baby weight?!  Is it possible that I feel LARGER?  Oh goodness.  My mind races, constantly.  I’m not sure how to deal.

Appreciate where you have been but live to be where you are now. Life never stops… or slows down. Time is the only true constant.

So, as you can see, I’m not really dealing.  I’m attempting to fine-tune my tools that I know will help me deal.  So here they are:

1. Breathe.  Sounds simple right?  We do it to survive.  But I mean to really breathe.  Take a deep breath, live in the moment.  Yesterday I simply picked up my sleeping baby, held him close and smelled his sweet baby hair.  I soaked up that moment in his cute puppy pajamas and reminded myself he will never be this tiny again… soak it in.  Appreciate the moment.  So again, take a deep breath.

2. Organize.  This ISN’T so simple.  But it really is essential in my life.  If I spend another 2 minutes searching for a pacifier, or finding a pair of running crops… I really might scream.  Evan entering this world, really reminded me how quick time flies and how important the minutes are.  Being even more organized (I thought I was, clearly I need some work) – will really help streamline tasks.  Even though the process is intense it is important.

3. Give yourself a break.  If you really only get in a 20 minute run instead of a 30 – don’t beat yourself up.  This is my problem.  Evan will never be this small again.  If I want to spend 5 more minutes cuddling instead of washing the dishes… I need to be OK with that.

4. Plan ahead.  Meals.  I need to start cooking in bulk for the days things go, well, crazy.  How do I do this?  Cook quinoa in bulk.  It takes pretty much the same amount of time to cook 1 cup as it does 3 cups or 4 all at once and a quick pop in the microwave is way easier then pulling out the measuring cups and tiny grains with a screaming baby in your arms.  Same with chicken, a total staple… Instead of grilling one breast or two, we do 4.  Finally, making sure we always ALWAYS have some greens.  Spinach, TJ’s new power greens mix (LOVE!!! omg. love.) which is organic chard, kale and baby spinach – EXCELLENT in my wraps or cooked with anything.

5. Dark Chocolate & a cup of coffee. Well, in my life, this is a must.  It is that happy sugar and caffeine.  I limit myself to one cup of joe and some dark chocolate whenever I’m feeling a bit blue.  Why?  Well… Why not?  You have to live.

6. Tea. Put that teapot on the burner and make myself some herbal awesomeness.  Chamomile is always a favorite but I must admit I have to get a lot of Mother’s Milk down in a day.

So some of the tools above work a little basically to just calm me down, but I’m open to suggestions to any others!! No seriously, any little bit of help. ❤

Do you just not have guilt?  Do you work to calm yourself down with some of the remedies above? Clearly I’m not just letting it go but easing it with the things above.  Maybe it has something to do with the fact I always try to over-achieve and I put a ton of stuff on my shoulders just to feel like I’m not cutting it… Which leads to less energy and not so healthy thoughts (i.e., guilt)

 

^^ Pictures like this (taken in Chicago 2011 the day of my 20 mile marathon prep run – A YEAR AGO ALREADY) remind me how beautiful life is.  I don’t want to waste so many minutes worrying anymore.

 

4 Comments

  1. hi, I just want to pipe up and give you some words of encouragement. You are doing so much and you are doing so well. As a life coach, I hear so many stories about people who are overloaded and then feel bad about themselves or their choices. Remember, you are a bright and beautiful woman who is doing so much good and you deserve to take care of yourself. The better you take care of yourself, the better resource you are for the people you love 🙂

    • Jen

      Thank you for these encouraging words. I’m going to take it one day at a time and be more positive about what I DO accomplish. I mean, I have a happy baby, that need to count for a lot 🙂

  2. I am still struggling with guilt and anxiety as well and my baby is 7 months old 😦 I am working on not being so hard on myself…it certainly is a process! Great post 🙂

    • Jen

      Thanks for reading ❤ I'm sure you are doing amazing! I think it is just part of being a mom, suddenly you want everything to be perfect. You want to get everything done, but we really need to try to let that go! Good luck, and keep your head up!

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