Saturday, February 21

what mummy guilt looks like (this morning)

Im one month back at work and trying out this 'new to me' experiment that is 'The Bread Winner' (well, the go somewhere and actually do some work bread winner. Simon does earn bread, but its passive,; otherwise known as Capitalist Bastard in in my undergraduate lingo. Im think im doing pretty well, it is only 3 days a week after all. The hardest part is not getting up early, its not the school drop offs on the way to work, its not the work either. Its the getting home and not behaving like a paternalistic, chauvinistic 'what have you done with your day' bitch. Its really interesting and frustrating, and challenging and confronting being on this side of the fence after having grazed the pastures of the stay home mum off and on for a few years. The things i have issues with shock me; i mean when did i start to get all judgemental and prescriptive about having dinner ready, toys tidied and bathrooms clean? Its weird how expectations change. I know how time consuming babies are and if Im honest, i think if spent as much time as Si does on the floor playing with the bean, instead of concerning myself with the keeping a tidy house...maybe Im feeling resentful? Im not actually at the point of not wanting to go to work and be at home looking after the bean instead, hell no. I think its just this new way of doing things is confronting my habits, an old record i never knew i had is still playing away in the background. Im shocked at this archaic, quiet inner rustle of judgement that i didnt know i had, that works its way through my reason, about how it should be.

I think the stress of finishing my dissertation has finally come home to roost, Im in that final stage of getting it ready. Im turning inward, wanting to get cranky, and controlling and am not behaving in a very inclusive manner. Its all so internally intense. Im working hard to not let it loose on anyone. Im struggling to keep my congitive process in charge of my bear brain and to just continue to talk and negotiate our way through the quagmire that is responsibility.

So in our house, mummy guilt this weekend looks like bananna and maple waffles and Yahtzee.

5 comments:

Rixa said...

Good luck finishing up your dissertation and keeping guilt at bay...I'd like to have a tidier house, and most of it is except our kitchen, which is just such an unpleasant space that I really have no heart to keep it clean and organized. It's a miserable, tiny little addition that is totally out of character with the rest of the house, the ceilings are 3 feet lower than everywhere else, there are hardly any cabinets and I have boxes of kitchen supplies still sitting unpacked in the back porch for lack of space...

innercitygarden said...

Oh that one. Yeah I know that one. Course, at the moment I am the stay at home parent and he is working upstairs in his office on a Saturday night, so I'm totally on the side of 'you can't be expected to do anything while caring for children'.

But this week all the snotty toddler wanted to do was sit on the couch watching Toy Story.

We worked out a basic list of priorities, the stuff that really has to happen (like dinner and dishes) and the stuff that can wait a day if playgroup or towers of blocks beckon. Basically, I reckon most of us want to come home to (or have someone come home to us) who takes care of everything. Pretty well all of should 'settle' for someone who can be trusted to do what they can. And hopefully knows when to ignore the mop in lieu of playing. (But I did have to explain to the Bloke that housework and childcare were not mutally exclusive, they can happen at the same time)

Kel said...

rixa-sigh. feeling like that about my whole house! hope you rsolve your kitchen issues soon!

ICG- lol- whose side?! yup - its pretty good here, necessary and important almost always done, so i was having a definite whinge! its incredible what a perfectionist i can be when tired and when it comes to others! agh.

Jen said...

You know Kel, I have a copy of that record playoing in my head. Where does it come from? I would like to crack it and ditch it out the window! Steve certainly doesnt expect me to have the house sparkling when he returns home, but I DO. Yikes...

Now to retrain the brain to just do this important things. Now we have a house full of people there is always stuff lying about, so its just fine! Everyone is a bit messy, and noone seems to care. Lovely!

Kel said...

jen - thats one of the things i love about having a houseful of people either at mine or elsewhere; i let go and just enjoy. But i have to say that after a few weeks of relative chaos, im always happy get back to or have my space back so i can 'organise' it.