Sunday, January 20, 2008
I wasn't a little girl that carried dolls around. In fact, I never remember having a specific doll that I especially liked or played with. I never get "baby hungry" when I hold someone else's newborn. I love to hold them and see their tiny features. I love to cuddle them...and smell their necks...and kiss their cheeks...and then give them back when they start to cry. I've sat in circles of women that talked about how after they gave birth, all they could think was..I want to be pregnant again...I want more babies. After I had my babies...I always thought...I'm glad that's over and I'm not doing that again any time soon. I just smile and quietly wonder. I've always wondered if I am...somehow...less of a woman...a worse mother because I don't feel like most other women .
Being a mom can be one continual guilt trip for me, if I'm not careful. I always worry...am I doing enough?...am I really cut out for this? I remember when my kids were so little...5, 2, and newborn...I was so overwhelmed some days. I couldn't wait for the day when they would get older...the day that I didn't have to change diapers...the day that I could go to the mall without a stroller...the day that I could carry a purse again...a real purse, rather than a diaper bag that doubled as my purse. The list goes on. I foolishly thought it would get easier, and before I knew it, the day came...my kids aren't babies anymore.
As my children get older, the day to day challenges haven't gotten easier...they have just changed. We don't have tantrums in the grocery checkout because they want candy anymore, but when I make them turn off video games to do homework or tell them to go to bed or to set the table...we have tantrums. I use to hate the glares from strangers when my kids would cry in stores, but I would gladly welcome those glares to never have to hear "I hate you. You're the meanest Mom in the world.". My kids don't cry when they are hungry anymore, but I have had to endure tears and complaining when I make them eat one bite of their vegetables. I wanted "a break" when they were little. I was always so tired. Sometimes, these days I wonder if they even need me and I miss the way it felt to hold them in my arms and rock them to sleep.
I wonder if I am a bad mommy because I didn't dream of babies when I was a girl. I wonder if I am a failure because I'm always late. I wonder if I am worthy of this job when I lose my temper. I am ashamed to admit that some days, I want to give up. I'm ashamed because good moms don't give up...they keep trying...no matter what...and I want more than anything to be a good mom. I want to teach my children well. I want to make lasting memories with them. I want them to be proud to introduce me to their friends. I want my children to know that I mean what I say. I want them to know that even if I'm late, I will ALWAYS be there. I want them to know that even though it's hard to hear hurtful words said in anger, that I will always forgive them...again and again...as many times as I need to. Mostly, I want my children to grow up never questioning the depth of my love for them...so even when I am tired and frustrated...defeated and floundering...I will never give up. I will never walk away. I will never stop trying to be a better mom...and I pray that when my children are grown they won't think I was a bad mommy.
Posted by MC at 11:18 PM