I think while all mothers deal with feelings of guilt,
Our occupational therapy at the sensory gym is at 4 p.m. We usually arrive by 3:30 and we sit in the waiting room and wait. The Boy's session is 2 hours so I make myself comfortable until The Husband picks me up at 6. We're home by 7 and then I need to cook something quick, eat and get The Boy ready for bed.
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Last Wednesday I did something I have never done. I cancelled our session. No, he wasn't sick. No, neither was I - not really.
It was raining and cold and I was simply exhausted. During the train ride up to The Boy's school, I couldn't keep my eyes open. Everything hurt. And my body kept jerking itself awake. All I wanted to do was go home, flop on my sofa and sleep. The thought of standing in the cold rain, waiting for two buses made my head ache. So I cancelled.
I'm not the parent that casually cancels sessions. I don't do it unless The Boy is sick. I've traveled to sensory gym during snow storms and heavy rains and on much colder days. So I hated myself for doing it last week, especially when The Boy started asking for it. I had broken out routine. And I had to explain to him that Mommy was sick. Promising him cookies seemed to work. And the session was soon forgotten. But its days later and I'm still feeling the guilt of it.
Because guilt is inevitable. It comes with the territory of being a mother. There are layers of it. As a working mother - who is also in graduate school - I have an extra layer. And as the mother of a child with autism, an extra two to three layers are added on top of that.
Am I spending enough time with The Boy?
Am I doing enough?
Why haven't I started the GFCF diet again?
Why don't I schedule more playdates?
Maybe I should try _______ therapy? Aquatic? Equine? Take your pick or choose from any of these here.
Obviously, I know that missing one OT session isn't going to make or break The Boy. And I know that not every single moment of our lives can be made into a lesson, session or life changing moment. I try to remind myself that I am doing the best I can and that sometimes, when my body is tired - I have to let it rest. Otherwise I'll be useless. But still, this is easier written than believed.
How do you cope with guilt?