Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Motherhood: I'm Keepin It Real

I yell at my child.

I do.

I did tonight.

It broke my heart after I did it.

She cried. I cried.

But I hit a wall.

I just did. I hit a wall and there was no turning back.

There was even a damn thrown in there. Not AT her. Not a damn it, or anything.

But I threw it out about the damned mustard.

Because even though she's in camp this week.

And after-care (at her request).

AND I took her to the pool tonight for several hours before coming home.

AND we were picking up Wendy's for dinner.

And and and.

All the ands don't matter.

But they did.

I hit a wall.

A wall of feeling unappreciated.

Of feeling, she is NINE. NINE.

And shouldn't she know, sometimes, to just let it go?

Shouldn't she sometimes recognize that - honestly - what? I don't even know. What SHOULD she recognize? She's only nine. She should recognize so many things. And yet. Nine. She's only nine.

And so I broke my own heart.

And hers.

And we rode along in silence.

And she cried a bit.

And then I recognized that I placed blame.

On my child.

My nine-year-old child.

The beautiful face that lights up my days.

The smile that brightens my mood whenever I see it.

The laugh that brings tears to my eyes.

I placed blame on her - for my thoughtless reaction. My urgent shouts. My anxiety took over and I hit a wall. And I told her so.

After all had calmed down.

She apologized. I did, too. I hate acting in a way that leads my child to apologize. And no, I know she needs to be held accountable for her actions. She's not spoiled. She doesn't get whatever she wants and asks for. She is learning the value of money. How to earn it. Save it. Determine what to spend it on. But sometimes, some days, some moments - I feel like any parent - I feel like we give and give and give - and that what's expected is more. Or not necessarily more. But as a child she just thinks about what she wants and says it. Isn't that how it is? And it's up to us to teach them how it works, right? But how does that work? Do we teach them that they shouldn't even ASK? Or do we remind them that they just won't always get all the things? How does it work? What do we do?

I just needed to share this tonight. Tonight, after days of seeing so many incredible posts on Facebook about how life is wonderful and how so many mamas are getting it right. And they are. And they're incredible mamas. And I know they get it wrong now and then, too. Some of my friends share that sort of stuff. But I know that if you're like me - if you're in my head? - you focus on the good. And then you compare. You compare the great stuff mamas and daddies do for their children and the appreciative children who make them laugh and make their hearts swell. You compare that with the downs you experience. You compare and you think and you think and you share. And before you know it you're really sharing all the good. Which is great. It's really great.

But tonight - tonight it's time for me to write and publish this post because tonight I yelled at my beautiful child. I broke. I was human. I was real. And tonight I came home and made my own dinner after no-thank-you-ing and I'm-fine-ing at Wendy's and then I ate two really good pieces of dark chocolate. And I enjoyed them, thankyouverymuch.

And I know later I might cry a little when I hold my baby in my arms as we snuggle before sleep. Because we do that, still. Not all the time, but often. And I'm okay with it. Because she's grown and developed and found her way and she falls asleep without me and I am relieved and happy and relaxed and I take deep breaths and fall asleep in my own bed, while nodding off on my phone looking at social media and reading and all the things that I can do now that I have the extra time.

And I won't feel guilty about that sort of stuff.

But I will feel guilty about yelling at my child. Even though I know it's normal. I know it's a part of life. I know how it is. I know how it goes. And I know it will all be okay.

Because I'm a good mom. One who deserves a tiara now and then, even.

Whether I'm exhausted and have hit a figurative wall. Or whether I'm the mom who is going down the slide at the Y. I'm a good mom.

And I love my daughter. With all my heart and my entire being. And I have to believe that she knows that. And always will. And some days, some nights, they'll be rough like this. But l'm gonna jump feet first into motherhood, as I always do. And for you - my friends - my readers - my family, even? I'm keepin it real.


  1. Thank you for "keeping it real!" I agree that, so often, all we see on social media are the perfect parenting moments because that's all people choose to share. I have these kind of moments and I have to remind myself that others do too - even though we don't always see them.

  2. We all do it. But, you are a good mom and your daughter knows it. It is already water under the bridge. Forgive yourself and move forward. Your daughter also needs to see that piece...forgiving yourself is very important.

  3. For what it's worth between two major moves and solo parenting Monday morning through Friday late night I hit the wall so often we created something new. When we are both beyond hitting the wall we started calling it hitting the window.
    It initially confused me :-) as I thought the window would come before the wall. But the child clarified NO. You go through the wall and then smack into the window.

  4. Oh, I have so been here! Sometimes all I have been able to say to myself is, "I'll do better tomorrow!" And I do. Most of the time! :)

  5. You're a real mom, and very much loved and appreciated by your daughter. I yell, I apologize, I cry. Repeat cycle. In the end, there's no doubt of my love for my sons.

  6. Is there a mom in existence that doesn't lose it and yell at some point? If she is I want to meet her and give her a medal. I think she's as mythical as the unicorn...

  7. Ha! You! The bestest kind-heartedest person I know. Not to worry, tiara-head. :) Look at it this way. It is SO SWEET your child is still at the age where you can worry about what you said, and if they were hurt, and how to make amends, and both end up loving and crying, BECAUSE soon, although a while, yet, the days will come where you are in gorilla warfare with that same child, almost a grownup.

    Take it from me, the day will arrive when you will cast nary a thought to the harshness of your presentation, the wildness of your staring eyes or breaking of your neck tendons as you pull down charts with your husband in the morning before breakfast, to decide how the day's battle movements will be strategized. All this while pouring orange juice, wearing flack jackets and spinning chukka sticks, trying to out-wit, out-play and out-last what has become a lean, green, mean teen-aged machine.

    So, in other words, these are the good ole' days where life is sweet and all is forgiven. No, I wouldn't worry a thing about it. You are the best. She knows it, I know it and everybody knows it. It's water under the bridge... No biggie! Love you, Guess Who?

  8. Oh how well I remember those days when it just was overwhelming and I snapped and said something out of frustration. It is real, isn't it? And it is life as a mom at times and I know that you are a wonderful and compassionate mom who should not beat herself up about a moment of frustration. Thanks for sharing your realness. If everyone was honest it is not all flowers and sunshine when it comes to parenting.


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