The other day, someone said something I hate to hear. “You’re the perfect mom.”
Oh sweetie. Clearly you don’t know me very well.
Yes, my kids were dressed up for church, sitting quietly together. But that was a mere 5 minute window into our day.
You didn’t see me yelling at them to get in the car. Or telling my daughter to “stop whining” while I tried to brush her crazy hair into something presentable. Or having to reason with my son over why he couldn’t wear only his Star Wars underwear and a pajama top to church (“Why can’t I? God knows what my butt looks like! He made it, Mom!”). Or the piles of laundry I stepped over on the way out the door.
I am so so far from a perfect mother. Most days I feel like a “Barely Adequate Mother.” For so many reasons. Like:
- I bribe my kids. Its amazing what they will do for a quarter.
- My kids call for Daddy in the middle of the night because I’m mean when they wake me up.
- I forget things. I show up late. We’re the ones who show up at guitar lessons and have forgotten to bring the guitar.
- I let them watch tv so I can sleep. Or work. Or just enjoy 10 minutes to myself.
- I hate playdates. Unless they are with my friends.
- I hate messy crafts. I don’t do Playdoh. Or glitter. NEVER glitter.
- I lose my temper. I make them cry. I cry.
For every time I walk out of Target with a smiling, behaving children, there is probably a time I walked out with someone crying because I didn’t buy them [insert toy/book/stickers/whatever here]. For every time you see us in public looking presentable, there was probably a battle beforehand about what they were going to wear, how we will do their hair and, most likely, both.
We’re all that mom with the screaming kid. That frazzled mom hissing “STOP IT RIGHTNOWORELSE” through her teeth. That mom who looks every bit as exhausted as she feels.
You might just catch us on a good day.