Motherhood: The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly

busy-mom

I had a very rough mommy day yesterday. There’s no other way to say it. In fact the past few days have been a little rough in my home. My daughter is going through a phase (oh man, I REALLY hope it’s just a phase) of extreme whining. She’s trying her limits and really wants to be able to get the things she wants from whining. It starts as a low whine and then builds to a full on tantrum. I know all kids do this, she is not abnormal, but I am working diligently to teach her there are better ways to get what her heart desires. This is a struggle for me. My patience is wearing thin. I’ve wanted to snap. And you know what? That’s ok!

I recently received an unexpected Facebook message from a friend I’ve had since I was a teenager. In the message she thanked me for sharing both the good and the bad parts of my parenting journey on Facebook. She said that she is often bothered by how people only ever post about their good times, making it appear as though their lives are perfect. This message came as a result of a picture I posted of my 16 month old daughter with the ring to her toilet around her head. I was so touched by her thoughtfulness, but it also made me think; all too often we are afraid to say that we don’t have it all together. If we admit that our children are driving us crazy then we must not be thankful enough for them. Wrong! Our children drive us mad because we do care so much for them. We wouldn’t even be bothered by their antics if we didn’t love them so. Anyway, as a result of that message I’ve decided to share a short list of the things that aren’t perfect in my house and these are all just within the last week.

  • One day I had to clean poop out of the floor…… twice! Yes we have two dogs, no they weren’t to blame.
  •  I’ve cleaned up at least 10 puddles of pee in the past week. You’re judging me aren’t you? Ok stop! We’re working on learning to use the potty here!
  • Yesterday baby refused to nap. After two failed napping attempts she fell asleep in my arms. While I should have stared at her cherubic little face and breathed in her smell, I sat and cried because holding her through her nap meant I’d missed my only opportunity for a shower until her Daddy came home.
  • Since my patience is wearing thin, I’ve had to stop myself from shouting at baby more than once this week.
  •  Yesterday I strapped baby in her car seat and went for a drive. I needed out of the house as the walls were closing in. I ended up at McDonald’s and ate my emotions instead of dealing with them.
  • There’s barely a spare inch of carpet visible in our play room right now. It’s a wreck. And cleaning it up feels pointless because for every one thing I pick up, another gets pulled out.

Do these things make me a bad mom? I really sincerely hope not. Instead I think these things make me real. My life is not even close to perfect. Parenting is hard work! It’s a learning process. It’s ok to have bad days, it’s ok to go for a drive and eat garbage every now again. Why is it ok? Because we are real people with real limits. Becoming frustrated with our children doesn’t lessen our love for them. Becoming annoyed with our children doesn’t make us less thankful for them. We live in a world with high expectations. I think people need to hear that we are all struggling. We all have “cleaning poop off the floor for the second time” days. In my opinion, I think that’s why God made kids so darn cute. Their sweet little cheeks and giggly sounds soften us even on the hardest of days. So don’t be so hard on yourself. If you love your kids and they know it, then you’re doing a good job already! And lastly, when you catch yourself crying because all you want to do is take a shower, remember you are one of a billion smelly mamas before you who have shed tears over the very same thing.

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