Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Meanest Mom

Today, it was declared by my children, not only at home multiple times, but also in public that I'm the meanest mom and I don't like my children.  I have never said, "I hate you" or "I don't like you" to my children... ever.  I will say, "I love you, I just don't like this behavior" to my children.  All last week, my girls and I were at Girl Scout Camp every day.  We hiked in the woods in 90 degree weather, got rained on, sat around a hot fire cooking food, made crafts, pot latches, and earned lots of patches.  We had so much fun that we pretty much wore ourselves to exhaustion.  As soon as we got home, the girls were to empty their bags, wash their hands and straight upstairs to shower and get ready for bed.  Then we would eat something edible for dinner and then we crashed.  I was lucky to do one load of laundry, just so we could keep wearing our camp shirts everyday.  Because of this chaotic schedule all week, my kids and I barely got enough sleep, which lead to all this mean talk from my children.  The girls are yelling at each other, fighting, spitting on each other and then just as fast, they can swirl around and be super nice to each other.  My 3-year-old started hitting me and yelling "no!" for everything I say.  How did my children become so mean to me and I'm the one declared as the mean one?  This is exhausting!

I think I figured it out today, after I treated my girls to ice cream and then after that their ears shut down for the rest of the day that I am too nice.  How can I be too nice and mean all at once?  I'm a mom, that's how.  I proclaimed today that anything that relates to me, gets put on the back burner until late at night when I can accomplish something in peace.  Today when I needed (not wanted) to buy a new pair of shoes, my kids automatically thought they could get something too.  This is after I said "no" a million times in the store before the shoe store.  Why can't I get something just for me because I NEED something and my kids get something they WANT just because they can?  Frankly, I get tired of saying no, but at times, I find myself turning it into a little secret game of mine.  How many times can I say "no" until I drive myself crazy?

We moms are too nice.  We put all our own personal needs behind everyone else's needs and forget to take care of ourselves.  When we do get a chance to take a break, we feel guilty.  Perhaps that's one of the requirements of being a good mom.  Who wouldn't feel guilty taking a hot bubble bath in the middle of the day when the babysitter is chasing screaming kids all around the house?  Well, I suppose I've put up with it long enough that I can put ear plugs in and know that I can take advantage of this babysitter while I have her in my grip and can't go anywhere until I get out of the tub.  She may never come back, but at least I got a bubble bath out of it.

It's important that we moms take care of ourselves.  I pray at night that God will keep me motivated in the morning to want to go to the gym and get a good workout.  He answers my prayers the very next morning (every single time I pray it) when my kids start fighting and wrecking the house, I grab my gym shoes and rush the kids out the door without a second thought.  I get two hours to myself and I can pound my frustrations out on the treadmill or spin cycle.  Read How to Survive Your First Spinning Class by Associated Content.  I will freely admit that I have shed tears on the cycle during class.  I have been that stressed and that frustrated that I can release all that through my pedals and out through my tears.  When I got it all out, I smile the rest of the spin class.

Moms, you owe it to yourself to ignore those mean comments by our children, erase all the guilt when you get a moment to yourself and it's OK to tell your children, "if you can be good for one hour, Mommy will be a happy Mommy for the rest of the day."   You are a fabulous mom, a loving mom and the most giving mom on all the planet.  Just don't forget to tell yourself that everyday!

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