Could do better...

>> Friday, 16 March 2012

Yesterday was not my finest as a mother.

I am feeling like a complete heel for two reasons. Firstly, I nearly forgot a long-planned tea party in Boy #2's class where they presented their findings on 'Animal Habitats' and showed their proud parents (or at least - the proud parents who made it on time) the books that each of them had created about their preferred animal.

Luckily for me a good friend with a daughter in the same class noticed my absence - and Boy #2's long face - and phoned just in time to ask if I was coming. I think I made the quickest school run ever, and turned up just in time to earn a beaming smile from my son, and to learn the reason why spiders have been the topic of conversation for the last couple of weeks in our house.

Whisper it softly, but I'm not keen on the creatures. Unfortunately, Boy #2 appears to have mistaken the slight edge of panic in my voice whenever I'm forced to discuss them for enthusiasm. If I have to see one more picture of a Goliath spider*, or retell him the story one more time of a friend who, whilst living in the Australian outback, used to shut her car windows and drive as fast as she could to try and rid the hood of Huntsman spiders* creeping towards her (they had had been sheltering in the engine of her stationary car but once the engine started, decided to climb out through the radiator grill and menace the driver), I may not be - well, very happy.

* Note - do NOT click on either of the above links if you have any kind of phobia about creepy crawlies. I think I went above and beyond the call of blogly duty just finding them, frankly - and was very careful not to read the text or check out the pictures too closely when I did...

Anyway, that was Mothering Fail #1 today. (We are of course discounting the raised voice this morning when both Boys had to be reminded for the third time to Put. Their. Snowpants. On! because frankly, I think that was merited. It was either that or resort to calming chocolate, and 8.05am is too early to break into the stash of Green & Blacks, even for me).

Mothering Fail #2 was yesterday evening, when I was far too testy with Boy #1 after bathtime as he overfilled a glass of water, from the cooler. I mean, it was a glass of water, for chrissake. Only a glass of water! So some went on the floor. Does it really matter? No. Whatever happened to my usual mantra; 'pick your battles'?

Snapping at kids just before bedtime; never good practice. Not a 'good mother' thing to do. And so I went upstairs, metaphorical hat in hand, to apologise to my older son. After we made it up, I was left to dwell mawkishly on how my sense of perspective / proportion / patience (all the 'p's, it seems) seemed to have made a joint decision to knock off early. It's no excuse, but it had been a long day and as bedtime approached all I could think of was trying to sit down at the computer and make headway with various jobs* I hadn't had enough time to finish due to an unscheduled airport run with my husband first thing.

*Not the least of which was trying to make blogging / freelancing / part-time employment work more effectively for me and which - as with so many things - I've been de-prioritising for far too long. More of which on another post...

I think I need to take a big dose of chill-pills and repeat as follows:

Check your diary every day. And - breathe...


MsCaroline 16 March 2012 at 11:39  

Best advice: Forgive yourself, and move on. The boys will, I guarantee you! I had plenty of those moments when mine were small and am grateful (and relieved) to report that we have good relationships to this day, even though they are teenagers.

It also might help to know that Mercury's in retrograde at the moment....

Tim Atkinson 16 March 2012 at 13:58  

Could've been worse. You might've stepped in one of the 35000 dog turds in your haste:

nappy valley girl 16 March 2012 at 19:01  

Don't worry. Your parenting fails sound pretty minor to me. I'm sure I've screamed at the boys this week for lesser crimes even than spilling water....the springtime clock change seems to have made everyone grumpy.

Frith 18 March 2012 at 23:48  

Just popped over from Welsh Hills Again; had to comment on the first post I read. Thank you for sharing your failure. I have been there and worse. The two sad secrets about motherhood are 1. how hard it is to keep your perspective/proportion/patience/presence after a long and scattered day, and 2. how cr*ppy you'll feel after you lose the P's and yell at your offspring. But no-one got hit, which is a plus, no? I was spanked as a kid and remember that well. A raised voice or two is much easier to forgive, and forget.

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