“Ope! Sorry! I’m just gunna sneak right past ya…”
Classic Midwesterner disclaimer sentence… I crack up every time I see this (oh so true) meme.
But whether you add the “ope” or not… and whether or not you’re a fellow Midwesterner, if you’re a mom, you probably find yourself saying that second word… A LOT!
STOP SAYING SORRY!
Sorry… er… I’m not sorry… but sorry I keep saying it! …ugh…
So many things I hear moms apolgizing for… so many times per day… myself included!
So last week I made a promise to myself.
No sorries for random life happenings.
No “sorry” My car is a mess (still).
No “sorry” my child yelled at Target down the entire chips aisle (again).
No “sorry” I’m wearing yoga pants (and not doing yoga…).
No “sorry” after the word “no”.
No “sorry” after having to call in to work because of a contagious child who needs mom snuggles today… and who can’t go to school to spread germs anyway…
The mompolgy store is closed.
Because there’s no need to feel shame or guilt for doing your absolute best and still falling a mile short of perfect. And when we say words which are meant for remorse, our brain begins to believe that there is actually something to feel remorseful about… so that one simple word (sorry) can change your whole demeanor in such a negative way.
It makes you believe yourself to be inadequate… unworthy…
And simply put, the odds are those beliefs are most likely untrue.
In the last decade, I’ve worked with countless moms (and dads… but this seems to be more of a mom epidemic)… and a large percentage of them struggle with depressive and anxious symptoms that seem to revolve around “unexplained feelings guilt and shame… and untrue beliefs of being inadequate”.
And guess what they all had in common…
A severe case of Mompologies.
Oh and I’ve been there, too. But I’m always amazed at the power of the brain and its self-healing powers… and those powers come from our thoughts and our words.
So what do we say instead?
Most of the time, nothing.
The couple at Target have seen screaming kids before… they’re fine… they need no explanation.
The coworker getting in your messy car likely knows you’re a parent… no explanation necessary. She also knows you have to be home with your sick child because at the very least it’s unlawful to leave your fever-ridden 8 year old home alone… no explanation necessary.
The person who asked you to help them move (again) knows you’ve got a life and kids… no explanation after “I can’t help this time” is necessary.
Your best friend knows that yoga pants, a hoodie, and a top knot (wash optional) is your uniform… no explanation necessary.
No really, it’s that simple.
We do not have to apologize for taking care of our needs above other people’s wants and comfort levels.
You’re worth more than that.
Odds are, I’ve caught a couple non-moms reading this post. Same rules apply. You don’t need to apologize for taking care of yourself either!! Nobody does.
It’s funny… in the last couple weeks, by saying sorry less and less, I’ve found fewer things to say sorry about… even though not much else has changed. My 3 year old still cried down the whole chip aisle (she was scared of the picture of the fire on the spicy nacho chips bag I picked up…), I still wore my uniform and rode in my not perfectly clean car… I still said no when asked to do something I’d rather not do…and yet… my demeanor about it all was different. I had stopped Mompologizing myself into a neurotic state.
And sorry not sorry… it has been totally worth it.
(I’ll admit though, same Target run I “ope snuck past” someone… just left out the sorry…)