The I’m not perfect guilt – redux

26 09 2012

I’m sure we’ve all heard about working mom angst. The conflict us working moms feel about missing those oh so important moments because we’re busy earning the coin that supports our family. Or in my case, getting that designation cough PhD cough that guarantees me nothing. Ahem, but moving on…

While on maternity, I had pulled monkey out of his awesome on campus daycare because it was on campus (>1hr commute away) and because well, I couldn’t really afford to spend $700 / month on childcare when I was at home. I would’ve kept him enrolled part time at some sort of Montessori daycare if I was eligible for some sort of EI or top up.  Since I’m wasn’t, monkey was home with me.

I SUCK at the whole SAHM type things. I don’t bake, I don’t do crafts, and I certainly did not encourage monkey to do those things. Truth be told, he watched way more TV than he should’ve because I just needed some peace. He was enrolled at local community centre preschool, but it definitely was not geared for kids like him. He’s probably above average intelligence, from a family with a good socioeconomic standing.  This is not being condescending, but realistic. He was enrolled in a high quality daycare where he was engaged socially, physically, and intellectually. This continued at home, before I had bear.  Families from lower socio-economic situations don’t normally have access to the resources I did. The kids could be of very high intelligence and the family could totally value books and education. But when you’re struggling to get food and shelter, you don’t always enjoy the luxury of being able to put the effort into kids that the organic brushed cotton sleeps, latte drinking, vaccination questioning middle class moms can.

After bear was born the exhaustion set in.  I just couldn’t be the uber mom.  To be honest, I wasn’t worried about being the uber mom because my parents didn’t do all the stuff I used to do with monkey and I am successful. If success is defined as not a criminal and not dependent on the social safety net.

Today his kindergarten teacher told me he’s behind on his fine motor skills. His ability to write, draw is not up to her expectations.

I’ve known this. I’ve suspected for awhile but kept brushing it off because I’m tired.  I figured it was developmental and it would click eventually. But monkey is noticing it too. He sees that he’s not as good as his classmates and then he doesn’t want to do the art.

This is where the guilt sets in. If only I hadn’t had bear. If only I waited a year to have bear. If only I could’ve put him in montessori part time, if only I was a good SAHM. If, if, if, if.

I am the mom that he has. I love him. Thats what matters. Right. Right?!!!

fucking guilt





3 responses

26 09 2012
Carolina (@braziliancakes)

That is what matters! You are his mom and you love him.
Plus, now that you know the problem you can address it. I’m sure monkey will enjoy some one-on-one time drawing with his mom. Or someone as well equipped to entertain him/help him, in case you have to work instead.

1 10 2012

AHAHA. Sorry. Flashbacks to second grade where I went shitnuts over cursive and my lack of ability to “draw my letters right”.
Anyone who saw my later calligraphy or detailed pencil drawings would not believe I’d ever had problems with fine motor.

So yeah, while I have no idea if it’s worth putting in more/different time/effort to help Monkey with this, I *do* know it’s totally one of those things kids can COMPLETELY outgrow.

4 10 2012
Another mommy scientist

You are a wonderful mom and a very skilled writer. This is one in many times that I have read your blog and felt exactly the same way (except I had one kid as a PhD student and the other as a postdoc). What matters is that you love him!

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