Yes, I am that mom that will care for her girls but not cater to their whims. Fits, Tantrums and whining are ignored until appropriate behavior presents itself. Do I feel like a less than caring mama as I pour myself a cup of tea, standing over a screaming child having a tantrum on the floor? No. Unfortunately, Life is filled with disappointment and I will not positively reinforce a behavior that will not benefit them in the future.
Yes, I am that mom that will stay up all night to sew three matching dresses and jackets but the thought of doing an at home school art project (like valentine’s day boxes) makes me cringe. When I create for the girls, my intention is to create lasting memories as well as something fun. They dresses and projects will eventually not fit anymore and art projects will be thrown away, but the memories will remain. For me, I want to experience and create experiences with the girls.
Yes, I am that mom who takes the girls to the Ballet, the Opera, and the Symphony. Having the children grow up with the arts in multiple ways will foster their creativity and open their minds. The only way for them to learn how to behave in grown up environments is to actually take them there. I have never shied away from bringing Mina to a fancy 5 star restaurant or the ballet. They learn by doing and observing. Given the opportunity to watch everyone in the concert hall or in the restaurant is a life lesson. I was at the ballet about a month ago and was told by an older patron that I should have taken my girls to the back row so they wouldn’t have been disruptive to the audience. To clarify, the girls were not loud or disrespectful, but they could feel the music in their feet and hands. The urge to sit and twirl their hands in their laps or feet by their chair was too great. That is the greatest compliment to the music, that it can inspire children to feel it throughout their bodies. It is in this Inspiration that the love for the Arts is born. We need children to fall in love the the Fine Arts so that they can become advocates for them in the future.
Yes, I am that mom who will tell the girls that Mama’s and Papa’s need their own time. There are times we do things all together as a family. There are times when they need to have quiet time for themselves and we, as parents, can enjoy our time together. I want them to see what a happy and healthy relationship is between caring adults. Children are important but they do not rule the roost. Together, we provide a unified front of Love and Respect. They not only see how we communicate and respect each other as a couple, but are made aware when their own behavior is disrespectful to either of us. We are their example as well as their teachers.
Yes, I am that mom who loves to be home with the girls, but I also appreciate the time they are not home. In order for me to maintain Me, I need my time and no, I don’t always miss them when they are apart from me. I think that is something many have a hard time understanding about me. I know that when I am with them, I am IN it full on, Mama-hat securely fastened! They have all of my attention when and if they need it. I don’t need them around me 24/7 to recognize my value in their lives. What I need is to have the time for me in order to be a better Me for them. The girls are a part, an important part, of my life but they are not my whole life.
These little musings have been rumbling around in my brain for awhile now. I feel like an enigma when it comes to other moms and how they interact with their kids. Not all understand me and my ways just as much as I don’t understand theirs. Parenting can be so subjective. No one feels they have it right or doing it well. This leads to judgement and resentment for anything different. We should be helping each other, not closing up and defending ourselves and our ways. What works for me may not work for you because of so many factors. I know i get quizzical looks when I send my daughter to school with no socks in the middle of winter. I “hear” thoughts running though those quizzical heads saying: that kid will get sick with no socks on. Mina goes to school with no socks and no hat and rarely gets sick. Her body runs really hot and she doesn’t need them. This is just on example of how things can get mixed up, jumbled and judged.
You are a parent, working, at home, part time, whatever. The bottom line is that you are doing the best you can with what you have. As Maya Angelou says: When you know better, do better. We learn as we go and it’s ok for our kids to see that. Now go, make some coffee and read a gossipy magazine to goof off a bit. You deserve some time for yourself!
Now for a little Mommy Comic Relief…I dare you not to chuckle!