03 Apr 2012

Flawless G

6 Comments Family, Personal Crap, Toddler

It has come to my attention that many of you who read this blog think I’m some sort of “great” mom. I realized I write a lot of stuff that makes me look like I’m super in-touch with my kid, and that I do and say all the right things all the time. You know that’s not true, right?

I mean, everything I write here is true. But I don’t tend to sit down and write right after I’ve made a huge mistake, or had a horrible day, or lost my patience.

I thought it was only fair to let you know that today I lost my patience. It was a good day, but I have a sore throat and I haven’t been getting enough sleep and I haven’t had a second to exercise since last week. So I’m bitchy and tired and a little bit sick. This morning we had a three-hour play date at the house of a friend from school. They had a blast and I loved talking to the mom, but after three hours of repeating myself, answering questions, putting costumes on G and taking them back off, walking up and down the stairs, and in and out the back door… I was tired.

Then we came home and I had about 10 minutes before my friend dropped off her two girls so she and her husband could get something done. These girls are delightful. They are well-mannered and lovely and awesome. But after four hours of the three of these kids, who after dinner stripped their clothes off and did some tribal chanting for 20 minutes… I was BEYOND tired. I had played cash-register and legos, taken them for a walk, made them dinner, got them numerous drinks and snacks, and played stomp rockets with them.

After they left, I was done for the day. Done. G had done absolutely nothing wrong, but I was finished with the day. I couldn’t talk anymore or listen anymore, or repeat myself or clean up one more thing. I yelled a little and so did he. We talked about how we both get frustrated with each other when we’re tired (okay, that was the in-touch part), but when the clock struck 7:23 and I wanted him to brush his teeth and get in bed… There was no discussion.

I told him he had done nothing wrong but I couldn’t say one more word and was done. He didn’t question it. It was like he totally got it and was just as done as I was.

Then he asked me if I was getting up with him in the morning or if Daddy was. I told him I would and he gave me a big smile. Then I told him I was banning all fun in the morning and if he had any fun, he’d get a time out. This made him giggle. Then I told him no giggling and I tickled him until he almost passed out. Then I told him there was seriously no more talking and turned out the light. Then he told me he loved me and I told him I loved him and that we were really, really done talking now.

He was asleep in 30 seconds. I should go to sleep, too. And yes, I realize the above paragraph makes it sound again like I know what I’m doing. But I wanted you to know that a lot of those great moments come AFTER moments of failures, or simple mistakes, or total impatience, or or or…

None of us are perfect. We all fuck up daily. But maybe it’s in the small, quiet moments of redemption when we are at our best. That last-ditch effort at being perky or kind or loving.

It is G-Man who brings those moments out of me. He is the one who knows what he is doing. He gives me the chance to be great at something. Actually, he gives me many chances every day. With him, I have a reason to tickle someone at my most exhausted. Without him, I’m just exhausted.

written by
Lisa Arch likes being a working actress... but LOVES being a Mom!

6 Responses to “Flawless G”

  1. Reply Carla says:

    I know you are tired. But I hope you read this…..I am not asking for sympathy or a “poor me”…BUT I want you to know, that the things you do, and the way you post them shows the love you have for your family. My parents were never affectionate people. I don’t remember having reading time, or play time, or just conversations with either of them that were not stressful….My Dad worked and Drank, and my Mom did what she could to keep things together. I was president of my Jr. Class. I was in plays in High School. I was always trying to prove myself, and was consistantly told I was fat and lazy and worthless…and they NEVER came to my Chior prerformances, Plays, or even my Jr class banquet. I was told I was not allowed to take the SAT. I was to get a job at Macdonalds, marry some local boy, and have kids. I left when I was 17, and have NEVER looked back. These are the things I remember.
    YOU are a GREAT Mom! You can do anything you set your mind to, and G will remember these things! The good stuff…We all get tired, but remember that next time he is cranky and tired too 😉

    BTW…I never told anyone except my best friend and my Fiance those things….

    • Reply flawlessmom says:

      Carla, I’m not sure how to say thank you for sharing that with me. I hope it’s somewhat cathartic to type that out. I hate for you that that was your experience growing up, but it sounds like you’ve wasted no time making up for it by creating your own family of friends and your fiancé.
      I do try to make G’s life as happy and love-filled as possible. It’s everything to me. And it means a lot, the comments you leave here.
      Thank you again… So much.

  2. Reply Christine says:

    You do understand that many children experience only the fuck ups and not the redeeming moments of awareness, right? That many children never hear their parent say “I’m sorry,” or “I love you,” in their entire lives? That just the fact that you know you fuck up and that you are not only willing to acknowledge it to your kid but to the whole freaking world does indeed make you amazing and aware and a great mom?

    The way we parent, you and I and moms like us, is so freaking foreign to so many families. I was never told I was loved. I was never apologized to. I was never praised. I was hardly even acknowledged unless it was to be told to do something, something else, something more, something better. Even as an adult, when I was so sick that I was told I could die, my mother still did not tell me she loved me. She showed me by taking care of me and helping me, but its just not in her to say it.

    Do I fuck up raising my daughter? Do I get frustrated when she is having difficult moments? Does she test my patience? Hell, yes. But I always, always, try to make it right with her. I tell that child that I love her, that she is amazing and smart and beautiful and gifted and my reason for breathing every single day. I listen, really listen when she talks. I hug her and kiss her and hold her hand and snuggle her as often as she will let me. I let her know that I’ve got her back no matter what. And when I’m too tired to be a fantastic mom, I tell her that, and she tries to respect it and give me a bit of space to get my shit together.

    And so I know that it takes effort to choose to parent thoughtfully and well. To understand that inside those loud, sticky, adorable little bodies are hearts that can be hurt, spirits that can be broken. And that its within our power, as adults, as parents, to choose to honor and respect or to control and rule. And you know it too. And you always try to make the better choice.

    And, in my book, that makes you a great mom, an inspirational mom, and a damn near flawless mom. You are a blessing to your child, as he is to you. So shut up and take the compliments, because you so deserve them.

  3. Reply Melisa says:

    Being a great mom doesn’t mean that you’re perfect. In fact, it’s important that kids realize that everything isn’t perfect all the time because once they get out into the world, they’re better prepared when everything doesn’t always go their way.

    So you’re still great in my book. Just say “thank you”.

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