The Guilt of Messing Up as A Parent

Warning: What some may consider graphic images near the end of the post.

My original intention had been to post Emergency (part 4), but today has been a very long and exhausting day, so it will just have to wait.

Yesterday evening, my husband, kids, and I went over to a friends house for a birthday cookout. There was a handful of adults, my two children, and one other.

We were all moving back and forth between outside and the house, and not paying as much attention to the children as we should have been.

All three of the children had been warned to stay away from the grill, because it was hot, but they’re all under five, and the youngest, my son, is barely two.

The children get oddly quiet, so my husband goes searching, and as he comes around the corner of the house, my son touches the side of the grill. It takes him a moment to register the pain and start crying.

Last night, his hand was pink, but did not seem to bad, but my instincts were saying it was worse than it looked. The others talked me down, telling my he would be okay, that it would teach him not to touch anything hot, that he would learn to listen.

Well, I’ll tell you what, a second degree burn is not a lesson. It’s just painful.

Today it blistered up, taking up part of his left hand, along his ring finger and his pinkie finger. I called my husband and made him leave work early, so he could stay home with our daughter. I took our son to Urgent Care.

They told me, all things considered, it didn’t look that bad, and to keep it clean, and keep an eye on it, to make sure he doesn’t develop an infection.

I have all day feeling just terrible, positively wracked with guilt, because I usually stay right with him. I know how adventurous and stubborn he is, and the one time I give him a bit more freedom, he hurts himself.

Please tell me I’m not alone. I feel like shit. My baby got hurt, because I messed up.

 

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Anxiety

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Such a simple word, but for those that suffer with it, it means so much.

It’s spending everyday being betrayed by your own body, fighting your own brain every second, of every minute of every hour of everyday.

It’s feeling like you can never really let your guard down, because the shadows will bleed in and start picking at the wounds littering your psyche.

It starts out like whispers, faint, but mostly easy to ignore, but it grows, and grows, until it is so loud and tripping over the top of itself that it sounds like static.

Constantly hearing, “Why even bother to try, you’re just going to fail anyways?” “You’re not good enough; you will never be good enough.” “It’s dangerous outside.” “You’re so stupid.” “You’re broken.” “You’re too ugly.” “Too fat.” “Too thin.” “You’re doing it wrong.” “Go away.” “No one wants to talk to you.” “Shut up.” “No one wants to hear you.” “No one likes you.” “You’re bothering people.” “People don’t want to see you.” “You’re damaged. “People are dangerous.” “The world is dangerous.” “You suck.” “Your husband is upset, what did you do?” “He only stays for the kids.” “You’re a terrible mother.” “You’re going to damage your kids.” “Your kids are going to hate you.” “What if something terrible happens?” “What if it’s the end of the world?” “How will you keep your kids safe?” “How will you survive without your husband?” “What if…” “What IF…” “WHAT IF…?!” “You’re not good enough.” “You are not good enough.” “YOU are not good enough.” “You ARE NOT good enough.” “You are NOT good enough.” “You are NOT GOOD ENOUGH.” “NOT GOOD ENOUGH!”

It’s a struggle. It’s painful. Sometimes it gets to be so much, that your chest gets too tight, your lungs squeeze, and you wheeze. You can’t get air. You can’t breathe. No air. Tears pour down your face. Your muscles lock up. You shake. Your body begins to shut down, because it thinks it is under attack. And it is.

Afterwards, you feel worse. You body hurts. Your lungs, your throat, your muscles. Your head hurts. Your eyes are swollen and aggravated. And now your brain is calling you stupid, over and over, for freaking out for no reason.

You really begin to doubt yourself. You begin to doubt others. After all, you hear it every day, cycling through your brain, a soundtrack on repeat. It’s your own brain. It wouldn’t lie to you, right? Right?!

Some people can find a way to struggle through it, fight it, and get better on their own. Some need the help and support of their friends and family. Others need the help of doctors and medication.

None of those options are wrong. Whatever you need to do to get better, to feel stronger do it.

You are not damaged. You are not broken. You just need help.

You are not alone. YOU are not alone. You ARE NOT alone. You are NOT ALONE. YOU ARE NOT ALONE!