I find this parenting thing tough. I’m an expert in Mom Math; but other than that, I’m pretty a remedial student in the School of Motherhood. I’m not talking about the physical fatigue that rides shotgun with parenting. The running around, lugging laundry baskets, chasing basketballs down the street, getting in the car and out of the car and in the car and out of the car, and myriad of other Boot Camp-like maneuvers of parenting I can handle. It’s the mental and emotional grunt work that has me heaving a heavy sigh most days.
I guess it would be like cruising through life dragging a giant tire behind you. Oh, and this tire is attached to a chain that’s strapped across your chest, making it hard to breathe, weighing you down and yanking you back when you are trying to move forward. That massive tire has a name, by the way. Its name is GUILT.
|Is that the new Guilt Workout? I’ve read about that.
It’s supposed to be so good for you legs and butt!
As if making decisions (big and small) isn’t difficult enough! I have to do it with this giant thing hanging off me! Did I make the right decision? Should I have considered more options? Was I too hard? Was I too soft? Did I explain myself enough? Did I explain myself too much? Was I consistent? Was I too rigid?
Those are just the thoughts that plague me when I make a decision I’m pretty sure about. Don’t even get me started on the mind games that begin when I am pretty certain there’s a strong possibility I blew it!
And what about all the other things I feel guilty about? The times I lose my shnizzle and yell at my kids just because I’m in a bad mood. What about the days I let them watch TV. until their eyeballs fall out of their heads? And let’s not forget the 10 ton pile of guilt trailing behind my car anytime I drive away from an establishment that provides food through a window.
For those of you not “in the know” today was the 100th Day of School for my children. (Please note the fact that this piece of news determines my “in the know” factor saddens me. I used to be somewhat cool. Well, marginally cooler than I am now, at least.) You lucky parents with school-aged kids know that the 100thDay of School has become quite the big deal. (Again, please note my life’s pathetic factor.) Schools around the country memorialize this momentous day with parties, treats and a whole laundry list of Pinterest-worthy activities. Just Google it- you’ll be amazed how many ideas are out there. (On the bright side, I might be a loser for being “in the know” but at least I didn’t Pin or Post “10,001 100th Day of School Craft Ideas!”)
You see a year ago, I would have had “100thDay of School!!!” plastered all over my calendars- yes “calendarsssss”, plural, as in multiple, possibly 3. I would have had a smiley face and maybe excessive exclamation marks and I would have sent out a reminder email to the parents in my class and maybe even a gentle “Don’t forget” text that morning. A year ago I was on the ball. Hell, I was the freaking ball!
But not this year. This year, I’ve been run over by the ball only to have it circle back, reconfigure itself into a giant tire named Guilt and attach itself to my body. This year, it doesn’t matter how many calendarsssss I have, how many emails I read or how wonderful my intentions are… my life is just that much more busy and hectic and full of details and minutia that I can’t keep it all straight. And things, even wonderfully sweet things like the 100th Day of School and my niece selling Girl Scout Cookies, fall through the cracks.
|Girl Scout cookies, permission slips, football practice, grocery store…!
(I couldn’t resist the most iconic “being chased by a ball” moment in cinematic history, ok?)
So with a heavy heart I pulled up at school at 2:45 and apologetically faced my 1st grader.
I totally dropped the ball and forgot it was the 100th Day of School.
I’m really really sorry. Are you mad?
I was at first. But then I remembered I had a beard in my pencil box so I just put that on. It was awesome. So it’s cool.
Wow, I’m so glad to hear th…. Wait, what? You had a beard in your pencil box?
Yeah. It was perfect. I totally looked like an old guy. It was awesome. Oh and I got to eat 5 donut holes and 5 lollipops. This was the best 100thDay of School ever!