And Just Like That The #Summerofrich Is Over ;(

AND JUST LIKE THAT THE #SUMMEROFRICH IS OVER ;(

In the blink of an eye the #summerofrich is now officially over and the kids are all home safe and sound, exhausted but very happy (and just as sad to be home).  Before he knows it the chaos will erupt and there will be mounds of laundry sprawled out all over the house (that is asides from the six smelly duffel bags filled with dirt, bugs and sand that need to be washed, folded and neatly put away), three very hungry mouths to feed and lets not forget the daily demands being expelled from those same hungry mouths.

Over the last four years my husband has been overwhelmed with having to take on many additional roles in our family in order to ensure that everyone’s needs are being properly met which has without a doubt included much of the typical, daily “mom” responsibilities.  Before I became ill we shared all of these duties and responsibilities equally when it came to both the household and our kids but now, well that’s a whole other story.

The thing is, that is what you do for the people you love, especially as a spouse or a parent, you step up to the plate at any cost and even if you strike out sometimes you keep going to bat for them.  I mean my kids certainly didn’t wish for this to happen to our family and they most certainly don’t deserve to suffer because of it either.   They never asked to be brought into this world but from the moment they arrived, it is our duty as their parents to ensure that they are provided with the essentials of life which of course includes food, clothing and shelter.  Asides from the essentials of life kids should always be provided with a safe and nurturing environment, an education and be taught the importance of values, morals, self-esteem, discipline and an overall mutual respect for one other.

When I look at the list I came up with above, I know in my heart that I can confidently reassure myself that I have completely fulfilled all of the essential responsibilities as a parent (well past their 18th birthday) while continuing daily to instill the importance of kindness and happiness in them as well.   So then why does my illness keep fighting me on this and making me believe that I am the worst mother and wife on this planet; okay, well maybe not the worst, but just one who believes in her mind that their lives would be less stressful, less complicated and less demanding without me in it.

This summer while my kids were away at camp I have tried to ensure that the #summerofrich was both enjoyable and relaxing for him (which surprisingly is even possible while hiking in the sweltering heat).  I think that overall he will look back on the #summerofrich with that same sense of relief he started with some 7 to 8 weeks ago while delighting in a pedicure almost moments after our youngest child left for camp but for me I am left feeling an overwhelming sense of guilt.

This overwhelming sense of guilt stems from knowing that my husband has had to play both the role of mom and dad for the last four years and that because of me he is even more deserving than ever of this much needed break from parenting.   At the same time though my illness has spent the summer reflecting on just how much I have failed my kids as their mom and to what degree it will impact their future selves (or already has) by having a mom who never feels she is good enough for them and truly believes they would all be better off without her.

I am reminded quite often that I am a good mom despite what my depression and anxiety tell me.  Sure my heart knows that I have provided them with all the essentials in life, along with the wherewithal to build a strong footing for their future and as much love and encouragement as I can possibly give them but my illness doesn’t want any part of it.  It is also unable to accept that maybe somewhere deep down inside I am also a good wife too and not just a burden to him or a failure.  It was from that same place in my heart that I pulled some strength from despite what my illness is telling me in order to ensure the #summerofrich be filled with so many fun and happy memories, especially knowing that it is probably the last one for many years to come ;(

Author: Kim Fluxgold

Wife, mom of 3 beautiful children, dog lover, creative sole and children's book Author. Sharing my journey with depression and anxiety through blogging in hopes of educating and ending the stigma.

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