Guilty party

by Ginger on January 25, 2010

in I'm a Disaster

These days, I’m really stressed. (as I may have mentioned). I’m over-worked, and over-tired, and over-stressed. And when I get over-stressed, I tend to become stupidly emotional. Sometimes my stress manifests in anger, sometimes in sadness, and sometimes, like now, in overwhelming guilt.

Yup, I get stressed and GUILT is the primary emotion I feel. I’m my own brand of crazy.

Some of the guilt makes sense.

  • I feel guilty about working so much, and not spending enough time with the kid.
  • I feel guilty when I’m at work and have to take breaks to pump, since it’s “wasted” work time.
  • I feel guilty when I’m at work and itching for the clock to hit 5, so that I can at least go home and work near my kid.
  • I feel guilty about not feeling like I’m giving any of the areas of my life enough of me. I feel like everything is getting short changed–you know, jack of all trades, master of none type stuff.

But those things all kind of make sense. Those are things that you could see any logical person thinking when things get stressful and there aren’t enough hours in the day. Let me share with you where my feelings of guilt are CAH-RAZY person talk, obviously brought on by emotional stress:

  • I feel guilty for feeling guilty. I feel like I should know better, so it just exacerbates the problem.
  • The kid has been spitting up a lot lately. It’s relatively new in the last couple of weeks (well, the volume. It’s not like he’s never spit up before). Rather than think, like a normal person, “oh the kid is drooling a TON, and has recently figured out how to nurse way faster but hasn’t figured out how to feel full as fast, and therefore, extra contents of stomach must find exit point”, my first thoughts are: “what did I eat today? Obviously I ate something that disagrees with him. Oh, God, what if he has reflux or an allergy and I’m missing it because I’m so busy, and crap I’m the worst mother in the world because my kid is miserable and it’s all because of me. I should just eliminate everything from my diet except crackers and water, just in case.” It should be noted that the kid? Is never bothered by spitting up. He’s not upset, or fussy, or mad (except when we stop playing to wipe his face, how DARE you stop the playing?). I on the other hand, have been turning into a mess about it.
  • I threw N.C. a surprise party this weekend for his 30th birthday (which, by his telling actually was both a surprise and a lot of fun). But a bunch of people ended up not able to make the party, turning the surprise party into more of a surprise…gathering? get-together? So I spent the night feeling guilty that I didn’t throw him a good enough party, or that I should have invited more people, or that I should have known that people wouldn’t make it and so planned something different where it wouldn’t be so obvious that I failed completely at my (self-imposed) task of throwing him a party. Somehow I managed to feel guilty about OTHER people not showing up to a party.
  • I found myself feeling guilty the other day that we’re doing ok financially. I know a lot of people, family included, who aren’t so lucky right now. And rather than just feel blessed that we’re in a good place right now, I feel guilty about our relative good fortune. Like I should be ashamed of our lot in life.
  • On Friday, the girl who reports to me left work early because she got sick. Because of that, something (that is not on any deadline at all) didn’t happen. And when someone asked me about it today, in a totally non-confrontational way, I felt guilty and defensive that it hadn’t gotten done. Like I should have done it on Friday when my coordinator went home and so felt guilty that I hadn’t.

These are just a few examples of my crazy. I mean, the guilt extends into all areas of my life. Cat not getting enough attention: guilt. Car needs to have the alignment done: guilt. Give the baby to N.C. so I can go to the bathroom: guilt. Tracked water into the office during torrential rain: guilt. I mean, over the stupidest crap. And I recognize it’s stupid crap, and I recognize that it’s related to my stress level. But that doesn’t really help–even though I know I’m being crazy, I can’t seem to stop.

I know it will get better when the stress lets up. I know it will, so it’s just one more reason to hang on until then. It’s a little like a roller-coaster–I’m all white knuckled fear, gripping the bar for dear life, and just waiting, waiting, waiting, until the ride is over and I can breathe again.

As always, more lists can be found over at Anna’s at abdpbt!

abdpbt January 25, 2010 at 8:08 pm

There is nothing like Mommy guilt, nothing in the world. Hope your work stuff gets easier soon.

Lys January 25, 2010 at 8:57 pm

i realize i’ve been completely out of the loop for a while, but i want you to know that i’m sending you as much calm and patience and not-stress as i can. i hope you get a break soon and can find a chance to breathe!

Alias Mother January 26, 2010 at 6:23 am

I am the queen of guilt. I can somehow make anything (running out of toothpaste! bad weather! dandruff!) my fault. I spend half my life apologizing for crap.

No advice, just…yeah. Me too. Let me know if you come up with an answer.

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