Tomorrow I will be better – A Letter To My Children

To my children,

It’s 10pm and I peak my head into your bedrooms. I look at the three of you all tucked up in bed, fast asleep and dreaming. I smile at your messy hair, your little crumpled faces. The emotions come thick and fast.

Love, obviously. That’s ever present. Pride. Affection. Happiness.

But then inevitably my little happy bubble is burst by the arrival of a less amiable emotion.

Guilt.

Guilt and I are very well acquainted. No matter how many times I try and shake him off, he always comes back.

You see my little ones, I always wanted to be a mum. And I knew exactly what kind of mother I would be.

I would be kind and gentle. I would never raise my voice. I would be patient and wise. I would find joy in the chaos. I would relish the noise and mess that comes with having children Β because it would just mean we’re making memories.

Mummy didn’t have a clue.

I look now at your innocent little faces, watching you dream away and I start to question myself.

“What could I have done differently?”

“How could I have handled that better?”

And yet again I find myself wanting.

Despite my youthful and perhaps naΓ―ve expectations, I do raise my voice. I’m not always patient when I have asked you six times to put your shoes on. I don’t relish the constant noise. I do not enjoy my house looking like two rhinos had a fight in Toys R Us.

There are days when I stick a film on just to get a moment’s peace. There’s days when the only game we play after school is the old favourite “who can be quietest the longest?”

I realise now as I’m looking at you, that one of you tried to tell me something today while I was battling with your tantrumming sister, and I said “not now. Tell me later when I have a minute.”

And now you’re asleep and I don’t know what it is you wanted to tell me. It could have been important. More likely it was a fact about dinosaurs or something equally random but that doesn’t matter. You wanted to tell me and I was too busy.

I’m sorry.

I can be grumpy, impatient and snappy at times but I need you to know something. I love you every single second of every single day.

When I’m tearing my hair out while you bicker and argue. I still love you. When I’m cross because you’ve got pen on the walls. I still love you. When I raise my voice and tell you “FOR THE FINAL TIME, PUT. YOUR. SHOES. ON.” Guess what? I still love you.

I wish I was better. I stand here watching you sleep and I promise myself “tomorrow I will be better”. Tomorrow I won’t shout, or become frustrated. Tomorrow I will sit down and listen. Really listen.

And yet deep down I know in all likelihood I’ll be stood here again tomorrow having the exact same thoughts.

So I need you to understand. I am trying. I’m doing my best and I will never stop trying to be the mum you deserve.

I have my faults but no one could love you all as much as I do. I hope you know that, and hearteningly I think you do.

So please remember next time I grumble or raise my voice. I don’t mean it. I love you.

And maybe put your shoes on the first time I ask…

Lots of Love,

Mum xxx



The Mum Conundrum

 

50 comments

  1. This is lovely, and something all of us mums have probably tortured ourselves with from time to time. I always think though, the very fact you feel guilty shows that you are a good mum. Rubbish mums wouldn’t care! Xx

  2. What beautiful heart felt letter. No one can be a picture perfect mum.I am sure your kids are not best behaved either, but you would not want them to be they are kids after all.So you should not feel guilty if you occasionally lost your temper or shouted.Its normal ,we are all humans with feelings.

    I am sure your family and kids know how much you love them and will always love you back. One thing I did with me kids is that I used to allocate a little time with each child separately to chat or cuddle or read together.The younger one I used to chat together at bath time and when she was in bed I would have some quality time with the older one chatting about her day at school etc.This way both kids got to spend one to one time with me and tell their story.

  3. Oh my gosh, I loved this so much – I cried!!!! I feel this way too!! Trying my best but realizing I could do better. I think it will/could be a daily struggle but being conscious of it is a first step, right? πŸ™‚ Thanks.

  4. Guilt is a powerful emotion and I live with everyday as well even though my mind is telling me I did no wrong.
    You are a good mother and please have no guilt or doubt about that……and the line about two rhinos fighting in the Toys R Us….that would make a great t-shirt!!

    Keep your chin up!!

  5. Awesome post! You are not alone. I think that as a mom we all envision this idea of how we will be with our kids, but it can be a challenge. Being a parent takes a tremendous amount, of time, patience, and energy, that in the busy world we live in is already exhausted. We are as imperfect as the littles we raise, but because we are adults, our children, others and even ourselves, expect so much, but the reality is we are human. Even as adults we are still growing and learning, most of us don’t even have life all figured out, I am one of those adults. Now, these aren’t excuses they are just facts. I think that all that matters is that you wake up and try to be the best mom you can be and most importantly show them as much love as possible, and let them know that you aren’t perfect, but all your imperfections will never change the love you have for them. This is something you are right about! You are awesome for acknowledging your flaws and you are awesome for being the amazing mom you are, keep your head up. You will get there it just takes time. Make sure to find time to allow yourself to unwind and get some quality “Me Time.” If have to take care of yourself too. Don’t let that guilt eat you up inside, trust me I know how that feels and it’s not a great feeling! I wish you the best with your little ones! πŸ™‚

  6. You have no need to be sorry, no one is perfect and as long as you’re doing your best and your kids are happy that’s all you need x

  7. Awwwww, I think you are doing the number 1 job of a mum amazingly – t’s clear you love and support your children and that’s so important πŸ™‚

  8. Some days can be so challenging, can’t they? I really relate to this… I never wanted to be the impatient, shouty mum either… but then I had no idea what being a parent was truly like and how as much as we adore our little ones it can be mentally and physically exhausting. x

  9. I’m sure every mum feels like this at some point, so please don’t be so harsh on yourself. They can test your patience but they’re definitely worth it. My little girl is only 6 months but there’s times she drives me crazy like when she decides to roll all over the room in just her nappy when I’m trying to get her dressed. #Honeybeelinky

  10. I could have written this myself, I feel all of this. Theres many moments every day where I wonder what I could have done better, feel guilty for raising my voice feel inadequate. But I remind myself that we’re not perfect and these feelings come from love x
    Thanks for joining #stayclassymama

  11. These posts make me a little sad. You are doing just fine. Our parents (in the 70’s) didn’t play with us – they just chucked us a puzzle and we did it by ourselves, we watched tv and no one cared, we were dragged to dinner parties and expected to disappear for the evening. There were no family friendly restaurants, we just had to eat garlic bread if we didn’t like anything, and sit and be quiet. Our parents yelled without a second thought. And we loved our child hood and our parents. The rise of the Supermum who is judged if she is just human and not some sort of amped up Glenda the Good, is not doing our kids any favours. The decline in resilience and grit in our kids, the skyrocketing anxiety and depression and the high percentage of failure to launch (or later age to finally launch) all coincided with this new style of parenting….so is there a connection? I don’t know. But I do know you don’t need to feel guilty for being human. #Stayclassymama

  12. So sweet! I am totally the same as you. One of my kids talks so much I have to constantly tell her to be quiet so my quieter child can finish her sentence. Then I realize I didn’t quite “hear” what either of them had to say. Mom-ing is hard, but I’m sure your children know you love them. I often tell mine “I’m sorry” when I’ve had an outburst or grumpy afternoon. They’re learning to read me and my moods. I love the sporadic hugs from my eldest when she can see my patience wearing thin. Kids are very resilient and they know we love them. Every day I also think Tomorrow Will Be Better.
    ~Jess
    #StayClassyMama

  13. I think we have all been here lovely. We all experience that guilt that eats us up. Parenting before having children was so much easier, when you have not got a clue but you know exactly how you’ll and then the children come and it is hard. Really hard but it is worth it. Great post #HoneybeeLinky

  14. Awww, we all get these feelings…. daily I think! It is so easy to think about our standards we want to uphold as mums but putting them into practice is co.pletely different. They know we love them, that is the main thing. Thank you for linking up with the Honeybee linky! Hope to see you for the next one! Xxx

  15. What a lovely lovely post. I think we all have bad days but the important thing is to know that we are not bad mothers we are just good mothers having a bad day. Thank you for sharing with #StayClassymama

  16. I think as moms we all probably have this guilt lurking over us but nobody said that parenting was going to be easy. Just remember you doing a great job and no matter how you feel or or what your children do to make you rant – you still love them and they love you. Thanks for sharing.#fortheloveofblog

  17. This is me! You have brought a tear to my eye. I want so very desperately to be the mum who is calm and patient, and has time to listen, but it is so hard in the midst of chaos and noise and appointments and deadlines. What a beautiful read.

    And congratulations because someone loved this post so much, they added it to the BlogCrush linky! Feel free to collect your “I’ve been featured” blog badge πŸ™‚ #blogcrush

  18. Ah this is a beautiful post and I nodded along reading to this. Like you I feel that I’ve nagged my daughter too much during the day, and maybe not be the best parent that I could have been. I think that this is only natural but I wish that the feeling would pass. Thanks so much for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

  19. I love this post because I can completely identify! Thank you for sharing your personal and deepest parenting thoughts with us. At least you know that you are most certainly not alone in how you feel…

    #BloggerClubUK
    Shevy
    http://moonsomnia.com

  20. Mom guilt is the worst! I have definitely been there too many times. My youngest is constantly telling me new things 20 times a day and when I get to the point where I’m just done listening or too distracted to hear it, I say the same thing then later I feel terrible about it because while it wasn’t important to me, it was important to him and I dismissed it. Then I go back the next day and listen to EVERYTHING he says because of the guilt I feel. It’s not always easy that’s for sure but we are doing the best we can and we love our children. They know that too. #bloggerclubuk

  21. Such a heartfelt honest post. Thank you. Feeling guiltyy as a mum is awful. Just know you are doing great. There is so much pressure these days on parents to be perfect. That people don’t realise what affect it has on us as a parent. #bloggerclubuk x

  22. This is lovely. I’m so glad you shared it, and that so many others can relate to it too. There are days when I DO find joy in the chaos.. but often there are days when I shout or snap. And what is it with the shoes?!!

  23. We’ve all been there. We know what we’d love to be like, but we’re not because we’re human. We not malicious or deliberately unkind, just forgetful, thoughtless or super busy … Hopefully tomorrow will be a better day πŸ™‚

  24. Oh lovey, you are writing the thoughts in my head every evening. All we can do is our best and hope that that is good enough. Thanks for linking up with the #bigpinklink this week.

  25. This is so lovely and I’m sure you are an amazing mum. This letter pretty much echoes the thoughts that go around in my head almost every night so this is definitely something that most parents can relate to x

  26. This is so true, I feel exactly the same every day and then every night! I promise myself I will do better and sometimes I do, but most of the time I don’t. But we really shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves as it is such an intense role and such an intense period of time. Whenever I feel the guilt creeping in I remember that Winnicott said you just have to be ‘a good enough parent’, which I believe (I seriously hope!) that I am most of the time – except when it comes to putting the shoes on for the school run, I fail miserably at that every morning!!! Lol!! xxx

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