Mother’s Day is coming up, baseball season has started, others have flooded the soccer fields for games and practices, softball games and track meets are about every other night, etc. May has swooped in and pretty much destroyed my calendar and I assume many others.
Believe me, I love baseball season and look forward to watching my son enjoy playing the game. Many of us enjoy those moments, when you child truly loves and enjoys the sport and they are fun to watch. However, do you have to attend everything that your kids are in?
I have had many, many conversations over the past couple of months with moms and dads and almost all have said “YES” or “I can’t miss not getting to watch them!” I also get the, “I think you are crazy look” for even asking this silly question from a few. However, from some, I see heavy shoulders, downward glances, and weight of the world on their shoulders as they run in circles to every single event.
What is it that tells us in our heads and hearts, that we have to be at everything? Is it parent guilt? Is it social and society pressure? Is it out of habit? Every family and parent are different and I will never tell anyone how to parent. That is your business, not mine. But why I bring this up, is that I see the quality of life for many parents and families, the level of stress, the level of running in circles, deflating the fact that you enjoy or want to see you kid do well and you want to be there to support them.
You know what, I don’t make every game, horseback riding less, practice, etc. The secret is out! At first, I did feel parent shame which I placed on myself. No one else made me feel bad. I might assume or give someone else power to do so, if so, that is my own problem. I will call my kids before or after, get photos sent via text message and I hit up the next game, lesson, etc. the following week.
Sometimes my work, travel or another event like a wedding shower, wedding, etc. disrupt the fact that I (we) cannot be there. But you know, your child knows you love them, that you support them and you are their biggest fan regardless of your presences. That they can be successful, without you in the wings, that they can have a great game and talk your ear off about it when they get home.
I understand that your child might have their best game ever, or they hit that homerun, or break that school record, make that first goal, etc. but I bet you money, they will do it again.
Don’t put some much pressure on yourself! It is hard enough to be parent and raise children today. Don’t add to the stress and unrealistic expectations! Find a balance, learn to accept the fact that you can’t do everything and that this is OK. Protect and use your time wisely. If that means attending every sport or kid event possible, and that fills your heart with joy, go for it! But if you need a break, take a breath, it is ok to take time for you. It is ok, to miss some games, events, choir concerts, etc. Below is a printable PDF, that you print, hang, etc. to mind you how precious time is.
Take care of yourself. Take care of your sweet family and find time for yourself. No more parent shaming and guess what, you don’t have to attend everything.