One of my favorite people is Kerri. If you read her blog or follow her Twitter or IG feed, you can get her sweetness right away. I mean, even though I'm not the same as her in many regards, I admire the sincerity and honesty with which she puts herself out there ... especially in regards to raising her cutie pie young daughter, Eisley.
Anyway, I saw a photo and caption on her IG feed yesterday where she said that for some reason, sitting down with a book makes her feel guilty most days ...
This made me think of when my kids were little. I used to also feel guilt when I sat down to read. Because I always felt that I should be doing something more productive ... like washing dishes, or doing the laundry, or organizing my kids' sock drawers.
It was only when I told myself that reading in front of my children was the best way to model good reading habits that I felt the guilt start to go away a little. Isn't that funny? Like only when there's a utilitarian value that young moms can associate with something they enjoy doing can they finally allow themselves to do what they enjoy without feeling guilt.
And today, I was feeling ten times the normal amount of guilt because I was painting during the day time. Usually, I paint at night. I guess I was feeling that during normal business hours, I ought to be doing more office-like things ... like being chained to my chair working on the computer on computer-related stuff. It felt like I was doing something way too indulgent as I put paint on canvas, on wood, and on paper. Everything felt rather stiff because of the guilt and I had a tough time relaxing and letting myself enjoy the process. I may have enjoyed it a bit more if there were a way to flog myself while painting so that I could make sure that I wasn't enjoying it too much. Haha.
The only way I could quiet the guilt down was to repeatedly tell myself that I was painting to prepare for my upcoming class. A utilitarian association.
I think women experience more guilt about the way we spend our time than men.
I think we women feel guilty when we take time out for ourselves.
I think we women feel we are neglecting people who need us when we do things that feel fulfilling to us ... like reading or painting or knitting or visiting with a friend.
I wonder about the past 10 years. How would it have felt if I could have lived it just as I did but without the guilt? To read without guilt. To paint without guilt. To crochet and knit without guilt. I mean I did all those things but I did most of those things with guilt.
And I wonder what I can do to live the next 10 without feeling guilt when I find myself doing things I enjoy doing. How do I kill the guilt? How?