If we are being honest with ourselves as parents, we will know that there are things that we like about each of our children. Maybe one has the dance skills to be on America’s Best Dance Crew, but they aren’t the best at following directions. Maybe another has the patience of a saint, and is your number one helper, but refuses to go to bed before 2am.
Children aren’t perfect, and neither are we as adults or parents. And going into parenting I think most of us, especially as first time parents have incredibly high expectations of our children, and our skills at parenting in general. I was like that four years ago when I was pregnant with my first child. The same child who will scream and have a fit if I tell him he needs to go to his room for hitting his brother, sounding a step below the devil himself as he growls and wales on the other side of his bedroom door. No one is perfect, neither is he, and I know that. Does he pull that with anyone else but me and his father? Nope! He would probably never dream of it… but that is the way he gets it out when he is comfortable in his own home. Children should have that comfort level. I don’t love him any less… but I enjoy that his little brother doesn’t need a full exorcism when he gets a time out.
Do I love him more because he handles the discipline better? No way, I just love that aspect of him. Do I hate when he tries to poke his little sister in the eye? Or whines when he doesn’t get his way? Yup! But it is all part of what makes him his own person. He wouldn’t be Benjamin without those specific traits, and characteristics. It is just something that comes with parenting.
I think something that would really benefit our society as a whole would be to let go of these high expectations of parenting, and the snide looks we get across the parking lot when our three year old decides to scream getting into the car, and the automatic judgement that just because a small child is crying they are in fact throwing a fit or acting out. What about the little boy that scrapes his knee, or accidentally walked into the open car door? Do the onlookers expect the child not old enough to write their own name to vocalize their pain?
“Mommy, that hurt like a SON OF A…”
Wait a second, so do we want children to really handle their emotions like adults do today?
Of course not, we expect a child to cry, and as parents we comfort them, kiss their boo boo and continue on with our plan of attack for the day. They are little people, with immature mentalities, and social skills that are years away from being fully developed.
But there is no reason for us parents to beat ourselves up over the good things we love about our children. There is no reason to feel bad about the things we really don’t care for either. Because again, in reality… there will always be something we don’t like about others, as there will be things others don’t like about it.
It is human nature.
Mom’s don’t put other moms down for the little things, help to stop the nonsense mom wars the internet has gotten us all wrapped up into, and embrace our children for who they are, and give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done. Being a parent will be the hardest job you have ever done!
“He’s not perfect. You aren’t either, and the two of you will never be perfect. But if he can make you laugh at least once, cause you think twice, and if he admits to being human and making mistakes, hold onto him and give him the most you can. He isn’t going to quote poetry, he’s not thinking about you every moment, but he will give you a part of him that he knows you could break. Don’t hurt him, don’t change him, and don’t expect more than he can give. Don’t analyze. Smile when he makes you happy, yell when he makes you mad, miss him when he’s not there. Love hard when there is love to be had. Because perfect don’t exist, there’s always one guy that is perfect for you.” – Bob Marley
This couldn’t be more true. The surprise, stress, and realization of a third child we never planned put a strain on my marriage. Not to mention the fact that I am a giant ball of miserable bitch when I am pregnant.
I feel gross, ugly, fat, and don’t want anyone within a 50 mile radius of me. Literally. And I will be the first person to admit is because I am secure enough to know what my faults are in life. Nope, I am not perfect, and neither are you!
Over the past two months since our daughter joined our family, we are more in love that we have been since first dating over 4 years ago. We have instituted an earlier bed time so we can make time together every night before it is too late… We have gone out without the children, and overall kept our lines of adult communication more open than most parents do.
For a while, parenting, for the both of us, made us completely lose each other. It became a routine daily… Work, meals, home, chores, laundry, dinner, fire department obligations, or whatever else had to be done for the day… and then bed. Little communication, except around the children. We had went from being husband and wife, to only being Mom and Dad, and we totally neglected each other while trying to be super mom and super dad. Do you realize how many parents do this daily?
Take time to be husband and wife… Don’t feel bad when you need time alone, whether it is an overnight trip, or just a 3 hour meal and movie minus the kids. Relationships are like plants, they need water, and TLC. Give it!
And to close this, I want to give a huge XOXO to my husband who is not only the most amazing husband, but an incredibly father to our flock of kids. Here is to another 46 years together like the couple at dinner last night.