7 Things To Stop Being Sorry For in 2018
Sorry, not sorry!
I noticed that lately, my almost-three-year-old is saying “sorry” a lot, and for very random reasons. I didn’t think anything of it until I heard him say sorry to his sister because she grabbed a toy from him. It was then that I realized two things.
One, he learned that from me. I use the word “sorry” very often, especially in situations where I don’t want to offend anyone or make them uncomfortable. I also say sorry a lot when I feel like I’m bothering or inconveniencing someone – of course, most times I assume that I am. Most importantly, I discovered that my overuse of the word “sorry” had a hidden meaning: I was apologizing for not being who I was before I became a mother. I was “sorry” for changing.
The second thing I realized was that I needed to do something about it for various reasons, including being a good role model for my kids – I certainly don’t want them going around saying sorry without truly understanding how and why to use the word. Ultimately, I don’t want them to feel like they have to apologize for who they are.
So, if you are a serial apologizer like me, you may be able to relate to the following seven things to stop saying “sorry” for in 2018:
1. Asking questions, especially when it comes to your children.
Anything that concerns your kids requires you to be bold, follow your intuition, and to not worry about making anyone uncomfortable. As long as you are respectful and honest, you are not in control of how anyone reacts to your questions.
2. Your kids crying or throwing tantrums in public.
I would get embarrassed whenever my kids acted up in public because I immediately felt like it was a reflection of how good or bad of a mother I was. I have since realized that tantrums happen, kids/babies cry, and I don’t need to be sorry for things that I cannot control. Let’s just Kanye-shrug and keep it moving, shall we?
3. Being late.
Before kids, I was a timely person. With two little ones, let’s just say I have great intentions to be timely but it just doesn’t happen the way I’d like. Life with little ones is so unpredictable that I have decided to try to be timely while letting people know ahead of time that I am running behind. Let your friends, loved ones, and colleagues know that you respect their time by informing them quickly of any changes in your ETA. That’s all you owe them.
4. Not responding to personal text messages/phone calls immediately.
I am so quick to apologize for not being responsive but the fact is I have my hands full with two little ones who need my attention most of the time. Instead of feeling guilty and apologizing for not responding immediately, set aside time blocks during the day to respond to messages, and let people know (if necessary) of your usual response times.
5. Not wanting to socialize.
You don’t even need to have kids to understand that sometimes you just want to snuggle up in your PJs and watch a movie or eat ice-cream instead of going out with friends. Don’t be sorry for wanting to spend some time alone doing nothing.
6. Expressing your parenting rules outside of your home.
Don’t apologize for disciplining your kids in public for behaviors you won’t accept at home, or for enforcing healthy eating habits when you’re at someone else’s house. Parenting doesn’t only apply within the four walls of your home, and until your kids are old enough to know the difference, don’t be sorry for taking action.
7. Taking care of yourself.
“Sorry, but I just need some time alone.” I can’t count how many times I’ve apologized even to my spouse for wanting time to myself. It sounds so absurd, but I do it anyway. It’s like apologizing for wanting to be a sane, functional human being.
I hope that 2018 is the year you (and I) choose to stop being so apologetic and start being human. Happy New Year!
Busola Saka is a writer and communicator. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two children.
What she's most passionate about: Daily self-awareness and improvement.
Her Clever Girl Super Power: Home Organizing.
Keep up with her: Instagram.com/heymama.hey