Guilt and the Release

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Are you a guilt guzzler or do you let things just roll off of your shoulders?

I find that summertime is the perfect time for unwanted guilt. Everybody asking what you did, where you went and how long you went for. Those questions used to send me down a trail of guilt that I rarely spoke of out loud.

“What did you guys do this summer?” My answers were often filled with shame and remorse. That question reminded me that my kids were only in summer camp, that I wasn’t living up to my potential, that, that that. It was exhausting…and hard on my husband.

Until something started shifting. I think the shift came with the recognition that pretty much everyone is doing the same thing. Of course, there is always that couple, that family, that mom who has changed the world and travelled it, too, in a thirty-day span. But, they also have other things that they want to be doing.

The biggest shift though, comes from the idea that we really are all the same. No one of us can be any better or worse than any other. But, what does this have to do with feeling guilt over your kids doing only a few things in the summer, you ask?

That is the topic of today’s article. Summer ‘doings’ are just simple and relevant examples. They hold the same amount of clout as do missing soccer games and picking them up late from school. The real issue, though, is feeling like we are not good enough, fast enough, strong enough, smart enough and any other enough that you can think of. The real issue is guilt. It comes from a place of feeling less than.

You already know that I really can’t stand advice. I really think that complete vulnerability is the truest way to show/teach someone else about how to live more comfortably. Usually, others don’t listen because they have their path to live. But, in the off chance that another can hear me, I share.

Summer time used to create great guilt for me. To be honest, guilt built up around me all the time…didn’t really matter what time of year. Every time I’m in a place of guilt, I set reminders for myself to note that we are all pretty much in the same boat. We are all born, live and then die. We all want to do things and rest. Some of us realize that we are enough sometimes.

I used to guzzle guilt like it was cool water. I used to hold onto it like it was a dear friend of mine that I didn’t want to let go of. I used to think that I was not as worthy as I am. And, then one day, I got too tired to carry that nonsense any longer.

Obviously, it’s a choice. Obviously, that choice has to be made. But, before I made the choice, I just had to accept where I was. This is not advice. This is one woman sharing what she has learned so far.

So, I ask you, again, are you a guilt guzzler, or do you let it go? Try letting it go; I hear guilt is hard on the tank.


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