Great moments in parenting

This week I had a temper tantrum and yelled at my three oldest kids for their lack of gross motor skills on Mother’s Day, no less.  On that same day, I hollered at my oldest to “Pedal!!!” in a harsh tone while pushing/holding him up on his bike seat.  I let go and he fell and cried and talked about how Mother’s Day is really “beat up J— day”  He has been afraid to try his bike with me since then and asks if I am going to yell at him.  I made him try the bike again anyway even though he looked like he was going to cry.

I tried doing an in the neighborhood version of the walking and running club that my two oldest children do at school.  The reason I did this is that we overslept and missed walking and running club before school the previous week.  My oldest tripped and fell and insisted that he couldn’t go any farther.  He cried really, really loud.  People were looking out their doors.  I made him get up and walk it off.  Then on the last block his younger brother and I started running again.  I think he was OK because he tried to race us but he let his father know what a bad mother I was when he went inside.

On another night, I really wanted to take a long fast walk with the baby.  My middle son saw us and insisted on tagging along with his scooter.  Two blocks into the walk he wanted to ditch his scooter.  I made him walk with it and I resented his every five second stops to look at things.  We left his sister behind crying at us out the window because she wanted to come too and I didn’t feel like dealing with getting her into warmer clothes and likely changing her into dry underpants.  She was crying in the window when we returned.

My daughter only stayed dry for one entire day this week.  I know this one is on her but it still feels like a parenting issue.

I let my 19 month-old drink something with HFCS in his sippy cup.

I let my 19 month-old become a 19 month-old without getting 18 month portraits done as I had done with his brothers and sister.

At the ballpark, I forgot to retrieve my middle son’s favorite water bottle after the teeball game.  I was so engrossed in watching my youngest toddle around in my middle son’s batting helmet while throwing a baseball after my oldest son’s game that I didn’t notice when my daughter wandered into the parking lot until my oldest’s coaches returned her to us.  I was not alone in this error as two sets of grandparents were with me at the time.

Well, you’ve heard my moments this week. Please use this diary to share your great moments in parenting.

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31 thoughts on “Great moments in parenting

    • I did my middle DS’s six months late this year and the other older kids were 4 and 5 months late for theirs. The boys shared an appointment and my daughter was in the day before them. It occurred to me that I needed to schedule those during the baby’s 18 month appointment.

  1. I let 1 watch baseball on the Internet all afternoon while 2 played Wii all afternoon, because it was easier than engaging with them when I have stuff to do.
    Summer is going to include lots of great parenting, I can tell.

  2. Am letting DS go to school in a shirt that is really too short, pants that are not quite long enough, and sneakers that are falling apart because it’s a uniform, and to buy new at this point in the school year seems fruitless, and it’s only a few more weeks, right? No one will shout “FLOOD” at him when he walks by, will they??

    I did give him money to buy one new shirt in a bigger size because I can predict how he’ll grow into it – so I’m not a totally horrible mother.

    • How old is S? I know he’s old enough to be making his bar mitzvah (sp?) so 13? I wonder if that’s a major growth spurt year to file in my memory. Joey had this crazy spurt last year where I would have been stuck with him but for the fact that I bought some clothes on clearance in late January in the next size up thinking that he would likely use them for back to school in the fall. He needed them a month later and then by the time he was ready for warm weather clothes, he was still another size larger. I found out later from our ped that many kids hit a major growth spurt at 7.

    • Is he still growing? If not, or if you can reasonably expect to know what sizes he might wear next school year, it’s a great time to buy uniform clothes. At least here. I’m seeing them in clearance aisles in every store. The same clothes will cost twice as much come the end of July or beginning of August.

  3. Let’s see…..I told DS [15] that if he wanted a career working at McDonald’s, he was on the right track but if he cared about going to college and having a good job, he needed to step up his work A LOT.

    Oh, and yesterday, I had somewhere to be at 7:45 — the kids don’t leave the house to catch the bus until 8:15. DH is out of town. So I left at 7:30, saying “text me when you are on the bus” then got to my destination and realized I did not have my phone with me. Borrowed a phone from a friend, called home and left a message “don’t miss the bus because you won’t be able to reach me”. I know that one is not that big of a deal, but I feel like I should always be reachable if DH is out of town, and I wasn’t.

  4. I have a new one. DH heard and dealt with my oldest son telling a funny story to his younger brother that involved the f bomb when they should have been sleeping. He picked it up from unsupervised Youtube viewing of Lego Star Wars videos likely created by adolescent or adolescent at heart boys.

  5. I forgot another person’s son at the ball field that I was supposed to bring along when we went to lunch. I had my kid, but this boy got left behind.

    I did remember fairly quickly and soneone else wnded up bringing him but man, did I feel bad about it.

    As far as my own kids I have done plenty of the things you mention. Yelled, let them have too much tv / video games, let them eat junk food, etc.

  6. DH and I told our DS that he didn’t have to do some math homework because we thought it was “stupid and lame” (and it was). Forgot the part, though, where we tell him NOT to say that at school the next day….you know what comes next.

    I was so glad that DH got the email from the teacher. :)

    • Oh boy. I remember doing that to my mom! Her good friend was moving out to California (where we lived) from Boston, and she and her son were staying with us. She and my mom had planned to rent a big house where we would all live, sort of a single moms and their kids commune or something! It was summer break, and the son was maybe 13 or 14 and totally bored. Lazy, TV all day, sour mood — nothing atypical! I called my mom and told her he didn’t DO anything (I was 8 and so much more interesting apparently!), and so she said “tell his to get off his butt and do something.” Well, I did, and then he told his mom, and within 24 hours he moved out to live with his grandparents. Not only did the moving-in-together thing not happen, I don’t think my mom and her friend even kept in touch after they moved out.

  7. my kids aren’t in school today. Why? Well, I don’t drive, and my husband has to be in very early to work on Friday mornings. So, my oldest daughter who lives here has been taking them on Friday. She came in from work last night with a migraine. Went straight to bed. This morning, daughter-who-should-be-in-school tells me that she doesn’t want to wake sister up, in case she’s still not feeling well. I drift back off to sleep. Little later, I wake up, go downstairs to get a drink, and daughter is asleep on the couch and oldest daughter is upstairs in the shower. Son still asleep. Oldest daughter said she had every intention of taking them to school this morning, but found other daughter asleep and son still in bed. What did I do? I went back to bed, too. And, now, oldest daughter took youngest daughter out to lunch. Skip school and get taken out for lunch. I’m clearly a horrible mother.

    But…don only has one week until he graduates, and daughter has only a few days left after that in the school year. We’ll all live.

  8. Used a very sharp tone with M to get her to keep her fingers away from the (covered) fan in the TV room. Freaked her out.

    Haven’t cleaned the house in God-knows-how-long. Dust bunnies mating at a rapid pace. Spotted a “Dust Harvey” somewhere. Kid at the stage where nearly everything goes in the mouth. Thankfully not dust-bunnies.

    But the winner prize this week was letting M out of my sight for 30 seconds when DH went upstairs to take a shower. I figured out she was headed for the stairs (which we removed the gate from a while ago), saw her halfway up and said, “Oh, there you are!” She turned around, smiled, waved, and pitched backward. But because I am a great mama, I was already headed toward her and caught her before she did any damage to anything but my heart. (If I’d left her alone, undoubtedly she’d have made it up the stairs unscathed, as she has done hundreds of times while attended.)

    Now, where the heck is that baby gate? Because I am getting palpitations just thinking about this incident.

    • you “used a sharp tone?” oh honey.. come see me when you slam a door so hard it takes all the photos down off the wall in the next room… ;-)

      you’re an awesome momma… the fun is really just beginning..

  9. Just bathed my children for the first time last night in…I literally don’t know how long. For my daughter, I think it was going on a week but my 4 year old DS I honestly don’t know! 2 weeks?!? He was FILTHY! In the winter I hardly ever bathe them but we’re coming up on warm weather and it’s going to have to be a nightly thing squeezed into the bedtime routine. They were just so gross! My daughter likes baths but my son is still traumatized by them, so we just avoid avoid avoid!

    • My son hated baths, too, so we bought some of those bath coloring tablets, and now at each bath, he gets to pick three and throw them in. He gets really excited watching the colors disperse in the water, and practically tears off his own clothes to get in there. He’s even pouring water on his own head these days. Just a thought, if you haven’t tried it before!

      • That sounds fun enough for a grown-up, too! We’ve used those crayon soaps for the kids — we don’t have a bathtub unfortunately, so the kids take showers.

        • I wonder if you could unscrew the shower head and put one of the color tablets in, so the water coming out of the shower would be colored. I should try it for my next shower… Heh. We have one of those obnoxious huge soaking tubs, which I never use because I can’t reach the end with my feet. But it’s like an awesome Olympic sized swimming pool for a two year old!

          • We had one of those, too — the previous owners thought it was a great idea to put a bathroom into the basement and have a HUGE jacuzzi tub surrounded by mirrors. It looked like something from Boogie Nights in there. The basement is set up to be able to accommodate overnight guests, and so they didn’t even have a bathroom they could shower in and would have to come all the way up to our 2nd floor to shower. My husband paid a contractor last fall to rip out the jacuzzi tub and frame in a shower and then DH tiled it all in a beautiful tumbled travertine tile. It looks so amazing, and now he has a place to shower at 4:30 am that won’t wake us all up. So worth it! Now, I just need to get the shower unit upstairs replaced with a bath/shower combo and I’ll be able to take a bath again! Been 4 years!

            • OMG, bahahaha! Boogie Nights! That reminds me of when my husband and I went to this really beautiful lodge/resort (that was totally out of our price range, but we’d been through a tragic event, so we figured screw it), and everything was so classy and upscale – until I got into the big tub in the bathroom, and pushed this button to discover a full on light show IN the bathtub. It was like a disco up in there. Totally out of place, but it gave us the hysterical laughter we really needed. It would actually kind of rule to have that kind of set up for kids! =)

    • Nightly? How clean does he need to be? I am simply not willing to put myself through that sort of drama on a nightly basis. My hydrophobic one is way better the past few years, of course – ever since we put in the pool he no longer screams when his hair gets wet. But he still fights showering tooth and claw and there have been few weeks in his nine years of life that have included 3 baths. We now refer to the pool as a chlorine rinse, just because it makes us feel a little better.

  10. My winning moment was back in January. About the time we were transitioning my mom to hospice, dd15 decided it was time to break up with her (first) boyfriend. I was on my bed, not watching some brainless tv, and she asks me for some words to use. I may have said “I have no idea.” Great support there from the mama-unit.

    She broke it off the day before mom died. Poor kid had a really bad week.

  11. I give Gabe MnMs when he’s upset to distract him because I’m too tired to work it out with him. I have also been known to let him sip my coffee or pop when MnMs are not readily available.

    He is 17 months old and knows the golden arches by sight. My daughter didn’t have McD’s until she was 3-1/2.

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