Sunday, June 20, 2010

lesson twenty | guilt trip results in packed lunches

"Guilt once harbored in the conscious breast, intimidates the brave, degrades the great.” – Samuel Johnson



Today was the day of Jodi's 30th birthday party - a high tea in her Grandmother's backyard under a quaint patio surrounded by gorgeous manicured gardens. Jodi made bright coloured hanging pom poms, individual fudges and hand-made jewels for each guest wrapped around the handle of our very own teacup. There were glass jars filled with wafers, musks and marshmallows and more doilies that you could poke a stick at.

It was a beautiful sight.

Jodi was dressed by a local vintage store complete with jewellery by Tilly & Co (that's not a typo). She looked gorgeous and fulfilled the ideal 50s party girl.

And the high tea was a wonderful success, the food was amazing, and everyone had a wonderful time.

I, especially had a ball. I had the privilege of helping Jodi set up the patio beforehand, and make sure that the milk was always topped up and the water was hot. I was able to play 'hostess' (well, a little, anyway). The whole afternoon was a delight.

But it was the morning that was the problem. I went to the party alone. And left the kids with my husband.

I felt so... guilty.

You know, I packed lunches for the boys, had them dressed, fed, watered, and ensured that nappies were changed. Beds were made and everything was left so that there wasn't anything else left for my husband to do.

Now, it's not like my husband is incapable of looking after the children. In fact, he's wonderful. And more than capable.

It's just that I don't leave my kids very often. It feels strange.

And when a friend who reads my blog asked me what I'd learnt today, I told her about my self-produced guilt trip. Then she proceeded to tell me that I shouldn't feel badly. And then told me a funny little story about it being her husband's birthday today, which she forgot momentarily, and then she left for the party with a child who had a nappy that probably rivaled an atomic explosion.

Now, that was an honest admission. (And it did make me feel slightly better.)

And even though I enjoyed flitting around the tea party finishing conversations without constantly looking over my shoulder, I did feel like something was missing.

Perhaps I need to go out alone more often to quell the guilt. Or perhaps next time I'll just bring them so I can feel at home not finishing conversations...