I’ve always prided myself on being a mom who doesn’t suffer from Mommy Guilt. I’ve always told my mommy guilt-wracked friends to buck up and not worry too much about scarring their children or ruining their lives. Yesterday all of that changed for me. Yesterday I understood the guilt.
Yesterday, I took Adolpha to her last soccer game of the season. Adolpha is not a real athletic kid and has not enjoyed soccer at all. We’ve been encouraging her to try and enjoy the opportunity to make new friends, learn a little bit about the game and get some exercise.
When we arrived at her final game, Adolpha asked me if this could be the last soccer game of her life. I laughed it off and told her that she just needed to get a chance with the ball and then she’d enjoy herself. Rarely does she work hard enough or get aggressive enough to take or keep the ball.
In the last 5 minutes of the game Adolpha got the ball, she was moving down the field and really looked like she was having fun. She looked up and made eye contact with me with a big smile on her face and I felt like she was saying, You’re right, mom! This is fun! Suddenly, she lost her concentration and two opposing players moved in to get the ball and she tripped over someone’s feet. She went down hard and I saw her arm bend unnaturally. She came up screaming in pain.
We took her to the Emergency Room and sure enough, her arm was broken. Several hours later when I was waiting for her to come out of surgery I was feeling pretty low. Why did I insist she play a sport? I’m not sporty, why should I expect her to be? Why did I make her finish the season when she was so miserable? I thought the right thing to do was make her finish what she signed up for, but if I’d let her quit we wouldn’t be here would we? Why did I distract her on the field and cause her to lose her concentration?
The guilt was pretty overwhelming. There’s no telling me to “buck up” today. I finally understand. I’ll probably feel much better by tomorrow. (I already feel better today.) I do think it will take some time though – and I’ll never force Adolpha to play soccer again.
What about you? Do you ever have Mommy Guilt Moments?
Be sure to read my daily rants at People I Want to Punch in the Throat where you’re sure to laugh and/or might be offended (it’s where you can find my R-rated rants).
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