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