Wednesday, December 22, 2010

It's OK to Take Time for Yourself. Just Don't Forget that You're a Parent!

Well, I am feeling especially guilty today.  I am having one of my bad days again in terms of being sick.  Unfortunately, that means that  good ole’ mr. TV is going to be playing a lot today in order to distract the little man.  I just don’t have the energy to chase after him and play with him like I usually do.  I am hoping that as he naps I will get over it, so when he wakes up we will be able to shut down the idiot box and play like usual.  It is kind of pathetic really.  As I am typing this I am sprawled out on the couch semi-watching “Harry and the Hendersons.”  I have it on mainly because it is providing some background noise so that the erratic traffic noises don’t wake up the baby.   I feel like such a bum.   Here I am hoping that my baby sleeps for a few more hours while I type a stupid blog post and try to recuperate, when I should be playing with him right now so he will sleep better during his afternoon nap.  What else can I do?

It is times like this that I could really take some solace in the fact that I am doing the best that I can.  Like every other parent in the world I too need to take care of myself in order to care for my child.  Yeah right!  We have all heard that before and it sounds like complete bull shit every time because, of course, no parent ever quite sees it like that and, chances are we never will.  Therefore, we just have to deal with the fact that we are doing our best.  Sure, we all know that there are times when our best just isn’t good enough, but we must also remember that there are times when it is.  We can’t be spectacular all the time can we?  Well, maybe you can, but I know I can’t.  Truthfully, I don’t know if I have ever been spectacular as a parent, but I am trying.  That is all we can really ask of ourselves isn’t it.  I am going to have my ups and downs, and so are you.  Our kids will still love us until the time when they start hating everything and everyone anyway.   So, let’s face it, we could use a little down time once in a while.  So what?  That doesn’t mean you are a crappy parent or person.  It just means that every once in a while you need to recover from an illness, lack of sleep, your sanity, or whatever.  Trust me, every other parent will understand so don’t beat yourself up about it.  Just don’t neglect your children or whine about it when you do need a little time to relax.  I hate whining.  It sets such a bad example.

Anyway, whether or not you will remember that it is ok to take a little breather here and there doesn’t matter to me because I am going to do it now and then anyway.   Don’t misunderstand me and think that means I planning on “checking out” as a dad.  Nothing can be further from the truth.  All taking a little time to recover means to me is that I am going to sit and snuggle the little man on the couch while we watch movies and eat tuna fish or chicken soup or whatever.  I don’t mean to say that it is alright to ignore your kids.  I mean to say that it is ok to be lazy once in a while because realistically you probably already are anyway so there is no reason to feel worse about it than you already do. So, that is what I mean when I say that it is ok to take time for yourself.  It is great and probably a good idea, but it is by no means an excuse to forget that you are somebody's parent and that somebody still needs you to take care of them.

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