I was raised a Catholic, so I’ve got a head start on this guilt thing.
But I realized yesterday as I was making cookies that AP (Attachment Parenting) and Natural Living has become all about feeling bad.
It’s not enough for me to make my kids a good meal for dinner. That alone doesn’t make me a “Good Mama.” I have to have a treat ready for them afterwards.
And it’s not enough to buy some cookies at the store. A packet of Chips Ahoy isn’t going to win me that “Good Mama” badge. I have to provide a homemade dessert.
And it’s not enough that I make a treat from scratch that they love. In order to feel genuinely good about it, I have to let one of them help me.
And it’s not enough to allow their assistance. I can’t express one tiny bit of frustration, irritation or, heaven forbid, anger, while we make our treat.
I’m not saying anyone in the NL/AP world is trying to make me feel any of this. I’m just saying that these are the words of self-flagellation that torture me on a daily basis.
Does it not defeat the entire purpose of moving toward a better life if along the way (which is all there is) I am going to be a miserable wretch?
Isn’t the point to cultivate a life of meaning, love and joy?
Can you get there by way of constant, unrelenting negativity?