Last week The. Most. Amazing. Thing. Happened. I came across a defective diaper. I have changed thousands of diapers in my almost three years of parenthood and this has never happened–the adhesive portion of the tabs was on the outside, thus making fastening the diaper impossible. This was a phenomenon the likes of which might never occur again! Had anyone else experienced this?? This became the absolute highlight of my morning, and I told everyone I saw for the next few hours.
Once the euphoria wore off, the reality of what really had just happened set in. I had literally flipped over a diaper; the excitement of my day revolved around poop and pampers. How and when did this happen? This was what I now considered excitement? Then came the guilt. I’m lucky to be able to stay home with my children; shouldn’t I enjoy every single moment, blah blah blah?
There seems to be this undue pressure to be happy during every second of child rearing. Admitting defeat and displeasure are looked down upon. This gift—our babies—that we were so lucky to receive, should bring us joy and happiness all of the time.
Well that’s crap; sometimes parenting sucks. A LOT. Why can’t we just admit that?? I’m finally okay with the fact that three times a day I dread the task that is getting Man to eat a meal. I embrace the fact that I think Dora is the devil and banning her from my home is not going to cause my children life-long harm, despite the fact that they may disagree.
Here are some true toddler-parenting confessions. I admit that:
Parenting can be boring. Just like any other job, it’s easy to get into a rut. I know, it sounds so cool to be able to “play” all day or hang at the park, but really, it’s so not like that. You play with the same toys every day all day… and these toys are designed for toddlers. If you can tell me how to make dressing Mr. Potato Head for the 7000th time fun, I’ll give you a hundred bucks! You absentmindedly hum their stupid songs long after the kids have been asleep all while searching endlessly for that one missing piece (because it wouldn’t be a toddler toy without hundreds of tiny pieces) because you know there will be hell to pay if you don’t find it.
Honestly, sometimes I just want to say, “If you insist on hiding again, I may not seek you.”
(P.S. That’s if my children actually want to play. Sometimes they just like to whine and carry on.)
Parenting is hard on my marriage. I’m tired, I’m cranky, I’m overworked… and so is my husband. There is a lot of, “You just don’t understand” that goes on. As in, “Honey, if she gets coxsackie, she gets it.” No honey, that’s not true; if she gets coxsackie, I’m the one who will be taking care of her while you’re at work. On the flip side, I definitely don’t always understand the stresses that he has at work.
Ultimately, we’re strong, happy, and in love, and we understand that all of this stress is worth the beautiful family we are creating.
I have a favorite child. It’s the one that is doing exactly what I asked him/her to do at that very moment.
I am a little judgmental inside. Despite trying your absolute hardest, you cannot tell me that you haven’t seen some parent do something at one time or another that didn’t set your inner monologue on fire with disapproval and condemnation. The key is to have an understanding that every family is different and you don’t really know the reasoning behind someone else’s actions.
I always love my children, but sometimes I don’t like them. When they sleep until 7:30, I absolutely ADORE them. When they call to me at 5:15, I really don’t like them.
When they draw me cute pictures with crayons, I absolutely love them. When they then drop those crayons in my dryer and they melt on my white sheets, I don’t really like them.
At times, despite trying my best not to, I will see other children and it will magnify the shortcomings of my own children. The last day of preschool this year the parents attended class along with our kids. At one point, they all gathered around the circle to sing a song together. All of the kids stood nicely around that circle singing the song and performing the appropriate coordinated movements, while Man, though singing and doing the movements, moved around the classroom during the entire activity. He. Did. Not. Stop. Now, I know my kid is constantly moving, because I’m the one that’s constantly following after him, but is was so glaringly obvious that he was the only kid who couldn’t, for two minutes, stand in one place and perform a song that actually had physical movement in it.
I do things I swore I would NEVER do. As parents we are all far from perfect, and there are times where those imperfections stand out like a pimple on prom night.
I let my kid eat cookies and candy sometimes just to get extra calories into him.
I let them watch too much television if I’m too tired to entertain them.
I make tons of empty threats.
Hell, right now, I’m letting Lady use the toilet as a water table just so I can do a final edit on this thing.
Please, feel free to leave your true confessions in the comments section below.