I’ve been carrying some serious Mom Guilt lately; for like the last 2 years or so.
My son is gifted with athleticism. He is the captain, quarterback, punt receiver, and another position I can’t remember for his football team. He plays both offense and defense, every-single-game. The team he plays with is always ranked number one or two out of the state. He is just so talented! His team has the best of the best players and he is one of them – probably the best, and I say that humbly. He holds the team together. It’s incredible.
Not only does he play football but he also plays baseball. He is an all-star player on their traveling league. He has such an inspiring passion for this sport; for both of them! I am just so amazed by his athletic abilities and that his passion motivates him to grow and get better. He is also an A student.
Now with playing both sports comes a lot of practices and games. It is literally a part time job for me and a full time job for him. I have four children and work full-time. It is nearly impossible for me to be able to keep up with his schedule and attend every single game. One of my other children may be sick, or I have so many errands to run, or it’s cold and rainy and I can’t have the young children out in it for 2 or more hours. There are so many different scenarios. I go to as many of them as I possibly can. I’ve never just chosen NOT to go.
He understands the role I play. He knows I’m the mother to three other children. He gets it. I can’t even express how thankful I am for how loving and understanding he is. He has such a beautiful spirit.
However, I still feel this terrible guilt about not being there all the time. When I was a child, I played sports. I was a cheerleader for many, many years. I was good at what I did. I was passionate about it. And guess what? My mother NEVER came to any of the football or basketball games I cheered at. Never. That was such a terrible feeling. Not having anyone there to cheer you on, see how good you really are, and to tell you they are proud of you.
I did have one person that believed in me, my cheerleading coach. She believed in me so much that she paid for my uniforms, bags, travel, and literally everything else I needed. My mom didn’t even have to pay for me to cheer and she still just couldn’t do it.
Every year at Christmas time, all of us cheerleaders and their moms would go to this bed and breakfast where we would exchange gifts and eat dinner. We would just spend time together. My mom NEVER went. I didn’t have money to buy another girl a gift. I was the only one there without their mom. Every – single – year. So my coach was my mom. I love her. I know she loves me too, even to this day.
So knowing how it feels when your parent isnt there to support you and you feel like you could possibly be making your child feel the same way, is a terrible feeling. It eats at you.
I have talked to my son so many times about the guilt I feel and explain again why I can’t make every single game. He hugs me. He tells me he understands. But yet, I still feel guilty.
I wanted to share this because there may be other mothers or fathers who can relate. I know that God is revealing this guilt to me so I can let it go. He wants to take it from me so I NEED TO LET HIM TAKE IT. Why do we play tug-of-war with Christ sometimes? Maybe I just need to feel it a little, know why I feel it, heal that, and be able to be free of this guilt.
Tonight while I was cleaning and rearranging our “den” or second living room, I found TWO written letters from my children that I had never seen before. What these letters said, told me how much they love me. They don’t feel any of the negative feelings I am so fearful of them feeling. They adore me! They write me letters all the time. We worship God together. We talk. We connect. And these little notes were just the reminder I needed tonight.
My children aren’t me. They aren’t the “Little Me” that felt those painful feelings. They understand and everything is fine! Everything is great! Our relationships are strong.
I thanked the Lord for showing me this. Reminding me of their love for me and that they know how much I love them. My guilt will be gone. I already feel such a huge relief. It’s not completely gone but I know it will be soon.
It doesn’t matter how many games I go to. What matters is how much time I spend with him. I show him I care. I take interest in his sports. I’m always excited to hear about it all and I encourage and motivate him. We pray together and we talk about the Lord. We are deep. That means more to him than how many games I make it to.
It’s relationship that matters.
Thank you Jesus!! All glory to you, FATHER.
Turning Wounds Into Wisdom,
You Him And Her