I'm nearly 43 and nothing has ever baffled me as much as this parenting thing. There is not a manual out there that can answer ANY of my questions. Quite often I say out loud "So how am I supposed to parent this?" - especially on those days when there's a toilet roll shoved down the loo and my daughter has cried six trillion times. I'm in my forties and I wish I could say that I've never felt better, but my memory isn't that sharp anymore. I am old and tired. I often wonder if I should have had children when I was much younger so I'd be better at blagging it. I know we all make slips but I'm starting to think I am making BIG mistakes. But you know what, I'm in a good place at the moment. People have even commented on how calm I am, which kinda freaks me out because I must have been demented before. And at least I've got some money saved up for my kid's future therapy. Anyway, looking back on my time parenting in my forties I can see a number of reasons why I have not yet been nominated for Mum Of The Year.
Reason One: My kids sometimes don't love me and sometimes I don't love my kids
Here's a conversation -
Child: "I don't love you when you're angry with me."
Me: "Oh well, nevermind."
Also, on those days when they've been arguing, fighting, whining, crying and generally revolting, I can pretty much say I don't love them.
Reason Two: Accusing my daughter of faking an injury and ignoring her
Because she constantly cries about every bump and bang even when nothing's happened. This morning, for example, I counted 27 new things wrong with her. And what made it worse was that she got wind her brother was seeing the doctor so she made up another 8 ailments.
Yesterday we went to the woods for 90 minutes - 60 minutes of which she spent crying because she'd hurt her knee on a leaf.
Reason Three: I let my toddler do what the feck he wants
Because it's easier. I break all the Rules Of Parenting with him. I don't discipline him that often and sometimes he plays with a hammer. If he wants crisps for breakfast, he gets them - because at 7.30 in the fecking morning with three kids to get to school, I don't want to be force feeding him cornflakes.
Reason Four: My kids don't believe me when I'm nice to them
Maybe because I fake smile so often. Or because I'm really good at saying "That's a lovely story, darling" when really I'm reading Twitter.
Or when I say "You've been really good", they tend to ask "Who are you talking to?".
But you know what - I tried it once, being a really Great Mum, doing everything by the book. It was a couple of months after I'd had my toddler. I did loads of home cooking, played games, did crafts and never raised my voice. I was actually fun to be around. However nobody noticed or even cared and my husband thought I was having a breakdown.
Maybe I'll be nominated in my fifties. Then again, maybe not.
This is an old blog revamped in case you recognise it - but I doubt that. I wrote it back when nobody read my blog except me. And my dog.
actually, she cried for 63 minutes. I counted! xReplyDelete
I think I might actually love you. Is all.ReplyDelete
Well, someone has to!Delete
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Thank you for this. I feel better. I don't seem to know many other mums who feel like this (or admit to it anyway) and who cobble their parenting together on a wing and a prayer like I do. You have really cheered me up! xxReplyDelete
I love, love, love this!!ReplyDelete
Great work man, I am really glad to be 1 of several visitants on this awful site : DReplyDelete
You're just honest, that's all. Maybe it's time we all were. Confessions - yes, I let my kids eat nothing but Easter eggs this week. I tell my oldest son he's "bloody useless" even though I hated being told that as a kid (and he's just like me).ReplyDelete
I buy my youngest toys and sweets in town even AFTER he's been a total horror and then tell his brother he can't have any because he didn't finish his broccoli last night.
These are isolated incidents, but when you KNOW you're being crap at this mother thing, you really feel shit!
Keep up the good work.
Crisps for breakfast isn't normal? Why didn't anyone tell me..ReplyDelete
You get my nomination just for having 3 kids and not killing any of them yet!ReplyDelete
I love the new blog look, btw
All that matters is that your children are fed, clothed and happy. Okay, your one daughter cries a lot about injuries, maybe she will be a doctor when she grows up. Who knows? My advice, don't sweat the small stuff and enjoy life, the kids will be fine.ReplyDelete
If people were truly honest, you would just be a normal Mum!ReplyDelete
You have literally made me laugh out loud with some of your tweets and your sense of humour will see you through.
I am approaching fifty and my boys are 14 and 12 so just to let you know it doesn't get any easier the problems are just different!
Jaki (jaki62 on twitter)
I think we should only nominate mums once their kids are old enough (i.e. over 18) to give them a review on how the job was done. I'm sure if you asked my mum when she was raising us 5 kids she would tell you she was a terrible mum, and wanted to kill us all most days. However I think she's the best mum in the world and would vote for her without any hesitation.ReplyDelete
Now I turned 43 seven months ago and so I have the benefit of age and wisdom and from that superior vantage point I can tell you: all of the above are qualifications for Mum of the Year. Good-humoured neglect and indolence, when consistently maintained, grant your children resourcefulness, flexibility, independence and a good thick skin. Yours will all be investment bankers, my dear.ReplyDelete
Can I join you? I'm knackered all the time, whine constantly about other people's whining, and my kids know that "in a minute darling" means, in about 2 hours, or not at all...ReplyDelete