“I loved you enough . . . to ask where you were going, with whom, and what time you would be home.
I loved you enough to be silent and let you discover that your new best friend was a creep.
I loved you enough to stand over you for two hours while you cleaned your room, a job that should have taken 15 minutes.
I loved you enough to let you see anger, disappointment, and tears in my eyes. Children must learn that their parents aren’t perfect.
I loved you enough to let you assume the responsibility for your actions even when the penalties were so harsh they almost broke my heart.
But most of all, I loved you enough . . . to say NO when I knew you would hate me for it.
Those were the most difficult battles of all. I’m glad I won them, because in the end you won, too.
And someday when your children are old enough to understand the logic that motivates parents, you will tell them.”
I saw this poem in a pediatrician’s office when Joshua was a baby, and immediately knew these were words to live by. I was once again reminded of it today when a friend of mine called me for some Mom advice. I’ve told y’all that I started this blog because many of my friends call me for advice about their kids health and parenting issues. I never mind sharing my perspective and professional advice with a friend. I think we should all help each other.
As I’ve said before, It takes a village to raise a child, and it really does!!!
Today when I got a call from CC’s mom and heard what was going on, I knew I needed to do some clean up work, and fast. Mom’s mental health and stability is crucial for a happy, healthy family!! CC is 13.5 months old, and one of the cutest little girls you would ever want to meet. She has a handsome, athletic Papa, and a beautiful, smart, strong, athletic, determined, and caring Momma. From the beginning, CC has given her parents many happy moments, and also a few challenging moments along their parenting journey. I remember going over in the first few weeks and helping CC and her Momma get the breastfeeding challenges under control. I told Mom at the time this was going to be a very head-strong little girl. I could tell from the beginning that she was going to learn how to do things her way. Today’s phone call let me know once again how head-strong and smart little CC is going to be. Even though she can’t say anything yet, CC made it known that she wanted to spend more time with her grandmother than mom by pushing away and saying what sounded like ‘Go away’….Can you say Heartbreak!! :-( CC isn’t really talking yet, but we are thinking her first words were ‘Go away.’ When Mom called me, she had been processing this for a little while and just couldn’t believe her baby girl’s first words might actually be Go Away.
What this tells me is that Miss CC is S.M.A.R.T!! She has already figured out that spending time with a grandparents is all fun and games! Children learn very early on how to wrap those grandparents right around their little finger. Unfortunately, Mommy and Daddy don’t have this same luxury. Mothers and fathers have to be the disciplinarians. Parenting is NOT always fun. Children depend on their parents to set boundaries, create limits, and teach them what the real world is all about. Mom and Dad don’t have all day to sit and play; they have to prepare meals, clean, do laundry, and work all while keeping up with the daily routine of life. So, playing all day is out of the question. Kids learn very early that they can get away with so much more with grandparents than parents, and they definitely use this to their advantage. Mom referred to CC as Miss Independence. I agreed with her, and told her that the text books really do call this developmental stage “Miss Independence.” Yes, there is no doubt where CC gets her smarts.
I tell the working mom’s I know that they really have 2 jobs, but only one of those jobs pays a salary. I tell the Moms that stay home that they have the hardest non-paying job ever. Motherhood is the hardest thing we will ever do… EVER! Being a mother is the most thankless job you will ever have, but you really won’t care. There is a saying that motherhood is like having your heart walk around outside your chest …how very, very true!
Being a mom does not mean you are your child’s friend. You can be their friend when they grow up and realize what a great person you are, and what a good mom you have been. Being a mom does not mean that you will do your child’s homework, they have to learn how to solve problems on their own. If they don’t struggle a little with learning, how will they ever persevere when things get tough. Do not allow your child to think they are better than someone else. Being a mom means that you will discipline your child when they start to act inappropriately to another person. If children are not taught right from wrong, they will not learn what is right or wrong. A mom should not let you talk disrespectfully to other people. A mom will make you use your manners, even if people are unkind. All of these Mean Mom things are going to help your child cope with the world around them, and build their confidence and self esteem. I could go on and on, but I think you get my point. And, yes, there are times, that you can let your guard down and just have fun with your children.
So, to my friend, I hope you are feeling better about being a Mean Mom. You are doing a fabulous job along this challenging journey called Parenthood. Keep up the good work!! CC will thank you someday.
As Mean Moms, we are teaching our children what is right and helping them become better people.
Mean moms are the world’s best moms! The world needs more mean moms, don’t you agree??