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cropped-front-coverI feel like a bad mom all the time. There is such impracticality to parenting anymore… to be organic, stay at home, work full-time, make every soccer game, be a Pinterest master, bake cookies, read every night, never swear, have all the laundry folded and put away, be an awesome wife, workout every day, pack daily lunches, enroll in as many extra-curricular actives as you can fit in your weekly schedule, never spank your child, drive five hours away to a basketball game… parenting has become pretentious and overrated.  The expectations are beyond realistic.

So I’ve stopped living up to them and have tried to lower the expectation for myself and my children- for the sake of my sanity and for my family’s overall wellbeing.  Sounds terrible, doesn’t it? I must not be a good mom if my five-year-old daughter isn’t taking at least three dance classes a week! Or my kids don’t have a packed lunch every day.

I know… but I don’t care.   I no longer feel like I have to be a perfect mom.  It’s ridiculous that I ever thought there could be such a thing.  I swear, I drink wine in front on my children, we keep active, but I don’t over-load their schedules.  I make sure there is time for them to be kids.

I’m a bad mom because I don’t negotiate with my children.  My rules, not theirs.  I’m the parent, they are the child… an interesting concept that has seemingly escaped from today’s society.

In Confession of a Bad Mom, you’ll find real-life thoughts about parenting, enhanced by my children’s take on things.  It’s my honest thoughts on being a mother of four beautiful and precocious children. Their hilarious quips and comments are enough to keep you reading.

I hope you’ll find some solidarity as well as humor in this collection of comments and thoughts.  At the very least, it’ll make a good bathroom read!

Get your copy here!

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Confession of bad mom:

I actually have no idea what the purpose of hashtags really are. Something to do with twitter? All I know is, my hashtags bug the crap outta my fifteen year old son… and that’s enough for me.

#hereallyhatesitwhenIwriteoutlongoneslikethis

#Ithinkitsfunnyanddoitonpurpose  #peopleliketryingtofigurethemout #hashtag

Confession of a bad mom: The reality of Mother’s Day…

Confession of a bad mom:

The reality of Mother’s Day is… it’s just another day in the life of a mother.  And though it may be the very best of intentions of those who love you, you still typically end up cleaning, cooking, and yelling at your children.

For example, yesterday my husband had to work.  I was okay with that as I was looking forward to having a quiet, low-key day at home.  It had been a busy week for our little family and some downtime was all this mom needed.  But that wasn’t to be… I spent the morning scolding my children about their constant fighting. And by 11 o’clock Kelan had kicked a soccer ball into a trio of wine glasses, shattering them and sending shards of glass flying in twenty directions.   Thirty minutes later, after cleaning up glass, I made lunch… with the only thing we had in the house… Spaghettio’s.  My “starved” children ate about three scoops before they moved on to systematically disassembling my house.  Curtains were ripped from windows, toys were strewn about, and fighting once again commenced.

Now… you may be thinking, “Well, what the hell were you doing while all this was going on?”  And I don’t blame you for asking…  because sometimes I ask myself that very question.  This time I have an answer.  You see, I was picking up the mess from lunch and vacuuming… again.

The final straw came when Ailey took the vacuum cleaner attachment to Kelan’s face.  That led to what I like to refer to as some ass-cracking, afternoon-nap taking time.  Others like to call it “time out.”

After everyone got sent to their respective “timeout” spots, I sat on the couch and listened to my naughty children cry in their rooms.  Tears streamed down my face, because I was the worst mother on the face of the earth… on Mother’s Day.

My oldest two, thankfully not a part of any of the day’s debacle, hugged me and kissed me and reassured me that I was the “best mom” and that their siblings were just being extra naughty. Kian explained that he was pretty sure they’d just saved it all up for Mother’s Day.  Later, my husband came home and tried to save the day.  He brought home dinner and even made efforts to find flowers and wine, to no avail.

However, he did declare it officially Mother’s Week in our house.

But it wasn’t until my mom returned my “Happy Mother’s Day” call later, that I truly felt better.  I cried and lamented on the phone with the one person who knew what a crappy Mother’s Day could be like.  Her laughter and consoling had me feeling so grateful that I still had a mom to call.

That realization made my day beautiful.  Even at 38, my mom made it all better!  It was the silver lining I needed. Because the reality is, every day is Mother’s Day… the house will never be perfect, the laundry will never be done, the kids will always be fighting about something, and our mom-breaks are far and few, but that’s what we sign up for when we become a mother.  It’s our expectations that get in the way… and sometimes, the best comfort is in the solidarity of others who’ve walked that very same path we’re on.

So, to all the mothers out there who work so damn hard, I hope you had the very best day ever.  But if you didn’t… solidarity, sister!  I feel you and I hope it makes it a little better.  Because I’m certain that whatever crappy day you’ve had, you’re still a great mom.

#happymothersday #peckersup #youreagreatmom #blessedtostillhavemymom #Illegitiminoncarborundum

I hope they are strong…

I remember my mother once telling me, “Life is hard.  The sooner you understand that, the less disappointed you’ll be.”  My mother is a woman of profound wisdom and I often think of her and the things she would tell me as I try and prepare my children for the world.

There are few things you can do to protect your children from the harshness of life. As a parent, we instinctively want to shield our children from sadness, fear, anger and all things that would harm them, both emotionally and physically.  Unfortunately, it can’t always be done and accepting that as mother or father, is the hardest thing you’ll ever do.

Watching my children hurt, because of nothing they’ve done, but because of the actions of others is gut-wrenching.  You feel helpless because there is truly nothing you can do.  It’s beyond your control. Teaching them to accept that they can’t control others and their actions, that they can only control their own, is so very difficult- but essential.   It’s hard to take the high road, to turn the other cheek, or to even pity and pray for those whose lives are so sad and unfortunate they must hurt others.

I can’t always protect my children from what others may say or do, but I try very hard to provide them with a loving, stable home.  In that home, my husband and I count our blessings every single day and pass each one along to all four of our children.  We surround them with family and friends who love us unconditionally; who would do anything for any one of us.

My husband and I try and teach our children that life is filled with sadness, grief, and hardship, but it’s also filled with happiness, love, and hope.  We are always explaining that life is all about choices, our choices, and that sometimes our choices can have direr consequences.   We also teach our children to be responsible for their actions and to understand that the world is not the scapegoat for their problems.  It’s very easy to blame others when we’re down and out.  And it’s always okay to feel a little sorry for ourselves, but it’s more important to move on and find a solution.  One thing I’ve always impressed upon them is to never wallow in their own self-pity.  Helen Keller once said, “Self-pity is our worst enemy and if we yield to it, we can never do anything wise in this world.”

So although I cannot protect them from the evils that have and will come their way, I hope I can prepare them for how to deal with those bad days.  I hope they learn how to not only survive life, but to thrive; to live each beautiful day to the fullest. I hope they learn how to embrace heartache, sadness, and their mistakes and most importantly, learn from all of it.  I hope that they are strong enough to know it’s okay to cry and feel bad, but to get up, dust it off and keep going.  I hope that my children always know that they are loved, deeply and by many.

I will hug and kiss my children.  I will tell them how much I love them.  I will buffer all that I can…and pray for the strength to endure their heartache each time I can’t.