|You don't have to be perfect to be an awesome parent.|
We enter into this world knowing that we will eventually bury our parents. It is a horrible, sad reality of life. Every once in a while, fate gets it wrong and the parent is the one left behind. It is one of the most heart wrenching experiences anyone can ever go through, the death of a child. It does happen though, and that moment changes the parent forever. When my little girl died, it altered who I would be for the rest of my life.
Have you ever just had one of those days where no matter what you tried to do, it just wasn't right? Those sorts of days always start off with the best of intentions, but somewhere throughout the day you just say screw it. Today was that day for me. It started off really great, I kissed the husband goodbye when he left our portable hotel home and went to work, from there it was all down hill.
Each time we go to grocery store, middle child stares at the covers of the tabloids that are in the check out line. It is my fault also, I get distracted with putting the groceries up on the belt, so I don't stop her. But, she is just fascinated with the covers and what stars are getting fat or who has cellulite or who is the skinniest currently. These magazines sit at a nine year old's level and shout out, "This is what you need to be in order to be perfect."
I'm obviously no longer a child and haven't been one for some time. I have three children of my own, yet for some reason it takes one phone conversation with my dad to feel like a ten year old again. I hang up and I want to jump up and down and throw a complete hissy fit like a toddler. At what point does this stop? When do your parents quit having this hold on you?
Once upon a time I dreamed of having an independent minded girl, raising her to play baseball and soccer, wear any color she likes, (not just pink) and have our house be the "hang out" house in the neighborhood. You know, the one where all the kids running around the streets come in for snacks, create chaos, sleepovers, etc.
Fast forward to her two year old birthday party, where I excitedly watch her open her red glitter shoes, loving her reaction as she squeals in glee. My sister in law bursting into laughter, saying " I can't believe you of all people bought those for her!"
I never really had confidence when I was growing up. Actually, I didn't really have it when I was an adult either. In my head, I would try to act like that sultry, sexy vixen you see in movies. But in reality, I'm a goof. I'm clumsy, silly and I can't be sexy to save my life. In my twenties, I was so awkward. Completely uncomfortable with myself and my body. I would attempt to wear heels and dress up like other girls, but could never quite pull it off. I always looked like I was trying too hard, and I was. I was wired to believe that girls had to wear certain things to be pretty, or be a particular something in order to be attractive. Then, I grew up.
There are days that I feel like I am always on the losing end of a constant battle with the kiddos. It started with time outs and escalated to taking toys now we take electronics. Then, oldest grew up. Now, we discuss consequences. However, since he is a teenager, he is never wrong...and since I am the parent I am always at fault.
When I became I parent, I always said I would never spank my children. I would never use phrases like "because I said so" or lie to them. I was so full of shit. My young, naive self had no idea that you do whatever it is that you need to, in order to make it through the day. There are three of them and one of me. They wear me down and then spring when they smell weakness.