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I’m Not as bad a Mother as I think I am!

February 18, 2010

Driving home from school the other day, my son brought up the recent tragedy of a young girl being suffocated in the snow.  She had dug a tunnel and it had collapsed on her.  Apparently they had talked  about  it at school that day. 

Yes, honey, she couldn’t breath and so she died.  That’s so sad, isn’t it?

No.

What?  What do you mean it isn’t sad?  She died, that is very sad.

No, not really.  I don’t know her.

But don’t you think it was sad for her family?  Wouldn’t you feel sad if it was someone you knew?

Well, maybe.  But if I didn’t like them, no.

Oh my goodness, do you hear what you are saying?  Yes, it is a very sad thing!  We’ll have to talk more  about this later.

At this point, I just ended the conversation.  I was getting more upset by the minute. Why didn’t my son understand what a tragedy this was?  My mind began racing!  That is never a good thing when I start to think.  I immediately starting flogging myself:  I’m such a bad parent, I’m not doing anything right, I should know what I’m doing, I have taken tons of child psych and child development courses not to mention the billions of books I’ve read, yet I’m still  a failure,  I’m not doing enough, I’m not instilling my son with caring and empathy, I’m not teaching him enough about my religion and faith, I’m not spending enough time with him, For heaven’s sake, I’m an educator, how could I be failing my son?  On and on my mind goes!!!!!!  The deep abyss of self-doubt sucks me into its depths!

My husband is no help.

Just forget it, he’s just trying to shock you!  Let it go.

How can I respond to that?  He doesn’t seem to have the same inner voice that constantly tells him how he is doing everything wrong.  I believe he has a genetic flaw of some sort! How can he take this so calmly?

Later, that same night the movie Air Bud was on.  My son talked on and on during the movie, telling me each detail just before it happened. Laughing and giggling , just enjoying.   All of the sudden he was very quiet.  It took a couple of minutes to notice.  I finally looked over and he was crying.  He looked at me and said, I told you this was the sad part!  We hugged and kissed and shared the sad part together.

I guess I’m not doing as bad a job at being a mom as I thought!

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. February 18, 2010 1:12 pm

    I think sometimes things that we are not close too seem to abstract for our kids to get. I would have had the same reaction you did – though maybe not been able to stop myself from going on and on and on and on!- The sad part of the movie was much more real to him. Yes you are a good mom!

  2. lighthousegal permalink
    February 18, 2010 3:33 pm

    Ok, the genetic flaw in your hubby had me on the floor! There are times I feel the same way about my DH. Please take what I am about to say in the spirit in which it is intended – man am I glad that there is another parent out there that over-analyzes things! I talk to other parents/read other blogs and they are just so calm and laid back and their kids seem so on track. Then I look at the chaos that is my life and the things that sometimes come out of the girls’ mouths that make my eyebrows meet my hairline and know that I am just ruining them. But you know what – I think we are both doing a pretty darn good job, you know? They still want to be cuddled, they know how to get dressed, they really do show empathy (though not always when we think they should), and they are starting to come out of the bathroom with their hands washed without reminding. I think we are right on track!

  3. May 22, 2010 7:24 am

    Wow! You’ve actually got them washing their hands? You are amazing and don’t ever forget it. I pray daily that:

    1. my 9 yr old son will actually use soap when he washes his hands and not just swipe his hands under running water because he knows mommy does a moisture check

    2. that he will actually use toothpaste and put brush to teeth, not just run his brush under the water because he knows mommy does a moisture check on his brush

    3. that when he takes a shower he will use soap AND shampoo, not just repeating the above procedures because he knows mommy will check like above

    Here’s to all the real moms in the trenches, keepin’ it real, fightin’ the good fight, over-analyzing everything, filled with self-doubt and fear we are doin’ it all wrong! Hip- Hip- Hooray! Keep up the good work!

    Thanks lighthouse gal! Between you and me and the fence post, I seriously doubt all is as calm and laid back as other’s make it seem. The word delusional comes to mind. I’m just sayin’! :)

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