Showing posts with label childhood. Show all posts
Showing posts with label childhood. Show all posts

Monday, November 25, 2013

You're A Bad Mom...

Just moments I got a call from a teacher at my son's school, saying he felt nervous because he was presenting his science project and parents were coming to watch and he forgot to tell us. Luckily, even though my daughter and I were in our pj's, Jeff has Mondays off, so I sent him on a whim. He had to get there in 10 minutes, but he was all set to go anyways, so he walked out the door immediately. The sad part is, why didn't I know about this already? I'm the one who helped him (basically did) the science project with him. But there is a part of me that feels like a bad mom because how did I miss that today was his presentation day. Was there a paper sent home that I missed? Did Wes tell me at some point and I forgot?

What is it that makes a bad mom? 

I was on a whole rant inside my brain last week on this topic because of the overwhelming posts on my facebook newsfeed lately with vents on other parents, and how and what they 'should' be doing...
Honestly, parenting is hard enough. It's hard making decisions based on each individual child's needs. What works for one doesn't necessarily work for another. If you are a parent of multiple children you know this. Parenting is exhausting and scary and frustrating. It's hard enough without trying to feel like you need to live up to the standards of what another parent chooses for their children, much less a single person with no children. That's the worst.

Parenting is not black and white. It's a whole lot of grey.

Unless something is specifically morally corrupt, it's hard to say what is wrong and right or what is best and it boils down to the child and the family and their schedule and the family's needs.
Where one mom has to work, another mom feels it's necessary to stay home with her kids.
When one parent feels homeschooling is the answer, another feels like pushing their child socially is what their child needs to develop certain skills.
When one child needs communication, another needs strict discipline.

I have felt like a bad mom on several times. On my own. With no one's help.

And I will admit, other people have made me feel worse. I have felt the pressure to homeschool from homeschool parents, as I hear of all the evils of the public school system. But what people don't know is what goes down in my home when the topic of homeschooling comes up. It's a fight of parent against parent...and unfortunately one of us looks like we are 'taking sides' with the child who 'wants' to stay home and avoid people. I've finally taken a back seat on this discussion, because I am choosing to honor my husband in what he feels is best and in the end, this is best for my son...seeing that I respect the decisions that Jeff makes. 
End of discussion. Unless Jeff changes his mind.
I've felt like a bad parent because I knew people disapproved that my daughter used to like Justin Beiber at the age of five. I really had no problem with it when he was a child. I knew he would grow up and get into trouble. It's inevitable in the celebrity world. And I knew his background and upbringing was Christian... 
So, I never felt the need to forbid Jada to 'like' Justin Beiber, because I figured it would wear off just like Dora The Explorer and the "witches" on that show or Barbie and all her ridiculous 'materialism' or My Little Pony and all the 'sorcery and magic.'

Although I usually skipped the "witchdoctor" episodes on Dora, but now what do I do about Barbie and her two mile long closet filled with that many clothes? Really? Barbie? C'mon! Clearly, that's not right to teach my child either.

Eeesh. Parenting is exhausting.

Everything out there, every single cartoon, every single musician is filled with some sort of thing that many parents would consider having a 'negative' effect on their children, some other parent may disapprove of because of their personal convictions. Where one parent may really disapprove of My Little Pony, they may be totally comfortable with letting their kids watch Rudolph the Rednose Reindeer with a story about Santa Claus. Is both the sorcery and the lie about Santa wrong? Probably. Do we all feel as strongly about the extent we carry our convictions out? Probably not.

Do you or do you not let your kids watch Elf?
Do you or do you not laugh at "it's a sucky thing" just like everyone else?

I honestly don't think their are alot of "bad" parents. 

At least not what sometimes we deem as a bad parent. There are certainly those who are abusive or neglect. There are certainly those who can't seem to take care of their own lives, much less try to raise little children to be capable, decision making adults...
but a parent that schools their children a different way, feeds their children a different way, lets their children celebrate holidays a different way, watch or listen to different music or tv shows, parents who do discipline a different way than we do are not bad parents.

It's funny because when my kids go to my parents house, my dad will never let them watch Goosebumps. I guess because the very nature of the show is supposed to be scary or something. And I can guarantee if that show existed when I was young, we would not be allowed to watch it.
But it's the cheesiest thing I've ever seen, so I have no problem with it.

This morning we were discussing shows with "ghosts" with my kids because Leila wanted to watch Casper and Wesley was just asking me about the scariest movies I've ever seen the other day... and personally in general I'm not crazy about it, for my kids in particular, because in essence, ghosts are 'dead people' walking around, and why do I want to let my kids watch death, even when Hollywood tries to make it cute?  (This is despite Slappy the talking doll on that a ghost? I don't know. Probably.) Wes brought up that I had let him watch Scooby Doo and I was like "Well, maybe I shouldn't anymore." And Jeff said, "Yeah, but in Scooby Doo, it always just ends up being a person, not a ghost."
Well, yes, that's true too...

And on the other hand, Jeff sure does love watching The Walking Dead...
Um, double standard?

That's what I mean. Parenting is hard. Parenting is not black and white. All situations are NOT the same. All kids are NOT the same. I definitely cannot discipline Wesley like I do Jada. Wesley covers his ears in fear, cowering in  the corner and screaming like we are going to hurt him~literally, 
when we even raise our voice. Jada looks at us and laughs likes its a joke. Not kidding.
She has actually told me when I was yelling at her, while laughing at me "You're face looks weird."
That's a whole new level of discipline for that one, than the one who thinks you will kill them just because your voice goes up a notch or two.

We don't know the situations of families inside their homes. We don't know what parents have done and tried with specific kids. We don't know what parents have talked about with their kids, what they have been through, what disabilities they may be dealing why do we presume to 'know" and to make assumptions and give unsolicited "advice."

Sure, we may think it when we see it when we see the mom yelling and dragging the screaming child in the grocery store, but do we need to make her feel worse? One person may think "Wow, I need to call social services on that lady." While another person thinks "Oh my gosh, that poor woman, I should help her. I know what that is like." While yet another person thinks, "Why doesn't she control her kids? She must "spare the rod and spoil the child. She needs to discipline."

How do you know that she doesn't discipline when she gets to the car?

And for the record, in the beginning of this school year, Jada is eight now and came home from school telling me she didn't like Justin Beiber anymore because she heard from her friends about some of his latest shenanigans in public. I didn't pat her on the back (although I was proud of her decision), I told her "Well, honey, I think when people get famous, they get alot of pressure from other people and alot of times they make bad decisions and do stupid things. We all make bad descisions. Instead of saying we don't like them, why don't we just pray for him, because I know his mom and other people are praying for him too."  And she agreed.

It just frustrates me. The level of judging people do on what is probably the hardest job in the world.
We all need to rely on our own intuition and the needs of our own children and families. If we need advice, we ask for it. Honestly, for me, I pray alot about things that I'm not sure about. There is so much grey. I wish it was all black and white. I wish we all had a handbook, but God made us parents so he has given us the ability to do this, whether we feel like we are doing a good job or not.

One of my favorite blog posts about parenting was written on the Matt Walsh Blog. If you ever feel like you've been judged by people in public, because of the way your kids are acting, you will love this:  
This one is also good:  

There are other people who do relate to you. Not everyone is judging you.
You ARE a good mom or dad, despite what people say on facebook or how you feel after you just had a meltdown in the presence of your children.  I watched this video and I cried...When mom's feel like they aren't good enough, their children see them quite differently.

and this is HILARIOUS if you need a good laugh about being a parent. 
Thanks to Brooke for sharing it with me...

Monday, August 13, 2012

Baby, baby, baby steps ohhhh...

Why is it that 2-3 weeks in blog world seems like 2-3 years?
It hasn't really been that long since I've blogged.
It's been 2 weeks. It feels like an eternity.
And then a week or so before that... I think.
I'm not really anti blog. I'm anti computer?? Possibly anti social?
But I've missed all my "sweet friends" here in blog land.
I have a lot of "volunteer work" I do on the computer, 
so I haven't been able to keep away from it entirely... unfortunately!
But I've had plenty of good conversations the past 3 weeks to keep me busy.
I'm not entirely back, just....hmmmm... touching base? Taking baby, baby, baby steps...ohhhh...
Hopefully you enjoy these real life conversations I've had lately with my 3 babies...
These are the conversations and things that keep me busy..."otherwise!"

I always like to keep a record of the odd conversations I have with my kids that make me 
chuckle to myself. Usually I let all my facebook friends in on them...
and usually they are enjoyed by all.

The scenario~ Jada has been sucking on those 2 fingers since she was six months old.
The Conversation~
Me: Get you're fingers out of your mouth, girl."
She shook her head no. 
Jada: It's my fingers Mommy. You dont tell where my fingers wanna go. 
It's a fun place in my mouth and my fingers wanna go there. See look!
~and proceeded to show me her fingers dancing around on her tongue~

The Scenario~Jada BUGGING us non-stop to go buy crap from the dollar store
The Conversation~
Jada: Mom can you plllleaaassse take me to the dollar store? I needa get stuff for me 
and Wesley's party. I need balloons and candy and a skeleton head and a dragon.
Me: What party?

The Scenario~Random, She's three. And cute. What can I say?
The Conversation~
Leila: Mom are you a girl superhero?
Me: No
Leila: Yes you am.
Me: I am? ok.
Leila: Yay! I'm telling Jada you a girl superhero!

The Scenario ~Leila sniffing my cheek
The Conversation~
Leila:  Ewwwww. You smell like stink. You gotta take a bath!
Me: I took a shower today.
Leila: Mmmmm you smell good!

Ever since he was around the age of 4, people would stop me everywhere...
or I'd hear them whispering "Hey, he looks like that kid from home alone."
Wesley actually acts like him too...IN THAT MOVIE!
The attitude. The complaining. The boredom. ALL OF IT! 
But I love him. Of course.

The Scenario~Wesley studying up non-stop online preparing for our trip to Six Flags last week.
The Conversation~
Wesley: When I go to theme parks, its like I make a movie in my head. Like, for example, 
when I go on the American Eagle I imagine I'm forced into a different dimension and a 
giant eagle is chasing me.
Me: oh yeah?
Wes: mmmmm hmmmmm

The Scenario: Leaving Six Flags later that week in tears.
The Conversation~
Wesley:  I wish Six Flags was my home.  All I have is my dog and my tv and my computer 
and DS and outside."   ( as if the rest of the kids in the world have their own six flags)
Me: You forgot your Wii and Netflix in your room.
(That conversation went over real well, by the way)

Thanks for stopping by! Seriously!
And Thanks SO much to everyone who has left me encouraging notes!
I'm looking forward to coming back to blogging "full time" soon!

For MORE conversations I have with my kids, click on   Kids and Conversation!
And if you've never read my Poop Post on the page, ya gotta!


Friday, June 1, 2012

A Look Back:1984

Writing this post makes me feel ancient, to be honest.
You wanna know my age in 1984, do ya?
While you were the sweet, innocent age of 6 months old,
I was embracing life with a red Michael Jackson wanna be jacket,
had my sleeves rolled to my elbows,
my collar up,
and secretly testing out cuss words on the playground.
Yes, that is a very specific memory I have,
jacket: red. sleeves: rolled. collar: up. 
cuss words: who me? never!! absolutely.
Don't worry Mom. It was short lived. It only lasted the day.
The coolness of it wore off quickly.
I was eight. My attention span was still short.
I'm pretty technical about numbers, dates, all that stuff.
So when I see shirts like this, I think to myself:
"Wait a second, if you were MADE in the 80's,
You probably don't even remember Rainbow Brite.'
I, on the other hand, do. Who forgets their favorite Rainbow Brite coloring book?

I would love to tell you, that in 1984, or the 80's in general my favorite music included 
Duran Duran or Cyndi Lauper, 
that my favorite movies involved: Molly Ringwald or Anthony Michael Hall, 
because they are certainly my faves these days...
But 1983 to 1986 was more of a collaboration of 
awesome animal documentaries,
contemporary christian rock and roll, 
everything disgusting about Garbage Pail Kids...
and I don't know about you, 
but the Get Along Gang pretty much rocked my world.
We didn't have cable, and we lived in a small town, so pretty much 
if you didn't have cable, you didn't have television.
Alrighty then, Disney True Life Adventures, it is!
Which is cool, because this covers both
my favorite TV show AND my favorite movie.

(The Get Along Gang was watched at other people house's, 
plus I had the stuffed animal moose, Montgomery)
Petra (an old christian rock band, in case you have no idea what a "Petra" is),
was my first concert ever. 
The first time I got a major crush. ON the keyboardist.
I definitely cried when we left that concert. 
We were stationed in the UP of Michigan.
I say stationed because my daddy is a preacher.
At that point in my life, our summers were spent
 living in a bus turned trailer home.
 as he took his family with him on the road to travel from town to town,
preaching in a Gospel tent.
I know you must be thinking, what an odd life...
but I didn't know the difference.
For me, it was normal. I actually liked it.
Until the morning I woke up with a huge hole in my blanket, 
because I dropped it from my top bunk onto the space heater.
Oooops.  Or better, yet, Yikes. That wouldn't have been good. 
So, not only does that cover where I lived, but also my favorite vacation.

I spent my indoor time reading books like The Babysitters Club,
Sweet Valley High...(oh wait, maybe those came a year or two later...)
BUT of course JUDY BLUME books!
Best outdoor time ever!!! Building snow furniture, snow forts, snow cities...
all out of
(I didnt have a snow pic with me, so I compromised with the pic you see below.
You get the idea)
And I spent my nights, taking care of my baby brother, Jon...
He was "stationed" in my room, 
so I very vividly remember giving him bottles & holding him at night.

1984. Or 1983-1986 are some of my favorite memories.
It was at that time period that I discovered I loved art.
I remember I kept entering contests and winning.
(that was said like Courtney from the Bachelor)

Did I forget to mention my cabbage patch kid, Shelly Love?
I remember the high demand for cabbage patch kids in those days.
I remember crying hearing a Cabbage Patch Factory had burned down.
Surely I wouldn't get one now.
But my parents are fighters.
They traveled 2 hours. Stood in the Christmas lines,
waiting for stores to open...
"You grab one for Jenny, I'll grab one for Julie."
And they did it! Got one for me and my sister!!
Thanks everyone, for taking this little journey back in time with me...
and thanks to the gals who hosted this Link Up...
Click Below to Follow THEIR Journey..
and link up too!!

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