Monday, January 16, 2012

Parenting is hard.

Yesterday Mommy put herself in timeout.  This is not the first time and I'm willing to bet it will not be the last time I spend 3 minutes in timeout.  Shortly before removing myself from the situation, I heard this shrill yelling, almost threatening, voice in my daughters room.  There was a little 3 year old girl on the floor rolling around with her underwear.  She was experiencing dressing amnesia.  It is a sickness often seen in young children once dressing themselves has stopped being a novelty and turned into a routine expectation.  It is particularly acute when parents are distracted by younger siblings or running late for an appointment.

After observing the 3 year old in her natural habitat.  I continued looking for the source of the awful noise.  There was no one else is the room.  No one that is except me.  I realized, as I shrilly threatened "Put your clothes on NOW or you WILL sit in timeout for THREE minutes", that I had yet again lost it.  I was sounding ridiculous.  I was giving into the frustration of parenting a toddler.  She was winning this battle because I was standing there yelling.  And worst of all?  The grin on her face showed me that she knew it.  I left the room to go sit in my room for a timeout.

Moments like that make me wonder if I made the wrong choice in my life.  I don't always love being a parent.  There are many sides to me and more than a couple of them see this whole parenting gig as not worth the effort.  So many people talk about being in the moment and treasuring your kids.  I constantly hear moms talk about how blessed they are and what a joy it is to stay home with their kids all the time.  They don't want the time to end.  They home school to keep the good times rolling.   I wonder what I'm doing wrong.

There are also moms on the other side of the fence.  And THANKFULLY some of them share their frustration.  I need that more than the air I breath at times.  Hearing that it isn't all rainbows and sunshine.  During my 3 minute timeout I pray for strength to keep my temper and a little detachment to not take her rebellion quite so personally.  As I cool off, I notice that my little 3 year old has recovered from her bout of amnesia and is now fully dressed.  It's magical.  She wonders where Mommy went.  I determine my timeout is over.

I scoop her up and tell her I'm sorry for yelling.  I also slip in a notice of how well she dressed herself. She tells she forgives me and she loves me.  I hope she knows I love her too.


  1. Hi Margot, I understand your frustration. So many 'mommy blogs' out there, perpetuate, the myth that as mums, we need to be perfect when in fact, there's no such thing as a perfect parent. (and I am about as far removed from being a perfect parent as you can get)

    I admire greatly the mums that are able to vent their frustrations, to show the 'real' side of motherhood. The side where we don't always like our kids, though we love them more than life. The side where we do question whether we've made the right decisions. Or the fact that we dislike the assumption that our identity is just that, mum.

    I really appreciate your honesty and the fact that you are not afraid to say how you really feel about parenthood. Well said! :)

    1. Thanks Lily! I'm glad you enjoyed my post. With a 1 and a 3 year old running around, I find that I have a lot less patience than I did a year ago. Thankfully, I'm finding an outlet online for a bit of my frustration.