Mommy Guilt 101: I Was Awesome Today – So Why Do I Still Feel Like a Loser?


Today was really productive. I planned two weeks worth of school for the kids, ordered most of the supplies that I’ve been scouring the internet for deals on, did preschool and kindergarten [ALL the stuff I planned, unusual for us], tested four recipes for the book, cleaned up the kitchen [no small feat in itself], made and cleaned up all three meals, and did two full loads of laundry. With three kids at home, including my 3-month-old infant. While my sweetie was away.

I freakin’ ROXORED today.

So, why do I still feel like a fat, ugly, useless pile?

When my husband got home, I told him how I was feeling and he sympathetically asked what had happened to make me feel so poorly about myself. I told him all that I hadn’t gotten done, with the things I DID do thrown in, as if that would somehow help demonstrate the magnitude of my incompetence.

A big smile broke out on his face and he told me how excited and proud he was that I’d accomplished so much! He told me how amazed he was at my amazingness, how lucky he felt to be with me, and all kinds of other mushy things that would make my kids gag.

At the end of his “you are wonderful” monologue [one of his many talents to which I must put better use], he asked, “You did so many great things today, you should feel awesome! Why are you so down?”

I had no satisfactory answer.

In my head, he’s totally right – I SHOULD feel awesome, dangit! Look at all I’ve accomplished. So why don’t I?

After a little musing and several ice cream sandwiches, I’ve arrived at this conclusion:

What-I-see,-What-He-SeesFunny how the piles are different sizes. And though it may seem obvious to you, dear reader, it didn’t occur to me until just now that the one on the right will always, always, always be bigger than the one on the left. No matter how big a dent I make in that to-do list, or inbox, or living room pile that is Mount Washmore, each day there will always be something that I didn’t get to.

This does not make me a failure.

If anything, as long as there is SOMETHING in the “I Did It Today” pile, I am a success. Maybe not the kind of success that anybody will hold a parade over or write a song about, but the kind that validates me as a woman, as a mother, as a wife, and as a human being with problems, challenges that seem insurmountable at times.

And today, I get to put all that stuff from paragraph 1 in the “I Did It Today” box. That makes today a success.

Go me.

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