Thursday, July 12, 2012

Mean Mummy Voice

It’s been a rough couple of weeks. Too much going on…not enough down time…too many moments where I have been feeling sorry for myself rather than feeling thankful for what I have.

There are a lot of reasons for this - stress at work, hubby not being home (for good reasons) and my kids choosing to test their boundaries - and as a result my mean mummy voice has been getting a real workout. 

It pretty much all came to a head tonight…when everything was a battle…and my kids seemed to have permanently lost their listening ears.  I threatened to take away privileges like TV and playdates they were excited about.  I gave them time outs.  I sighed loudly and told them that I was officially out of patience.

Nothing worked.

And after coming into the bathroom to find the floor covered in bath water - after repeatedly warning them to be careful - I pretty much blew my top.  In a door slamming, wish-the-windows-weren’t-open-so-my-neighbours-couldn’t-hear-every-word kind of way. It wasn’t pretty…

In the aftermath I took a few moments to compose myself and then we went through the process of finishing the baths, drying hair and getting them in to PJ’s in an awkward silence. The whole time my guilt was growing and I knew that I needed to apologize.

So I did. At bedtime I hugged them and - fighting back tears - told them that I was sorry for yelling at them.  That I was so very sorry we had had such a rough night.

Little one was quick to forgive - likely because she had already forgotten her role in any of the trouble this evening. She just nestled her little head in my shoulder and told me she loved me. Then ran off to play…

For my oldest it wasn’t quite so easy.  She told me she was sorry too…that she knew she hadn’t listened and that she hadn’t been a good big sister.  That killed me.  I felt tears stinging in my eyes as I hugged her tightly and told her that she is an amazing big sister. That she should never think otherwise.

And then she asked me - with a little quiver in her voice - if I still loved her.  Man…that hurt.

I am not a perfect parent…have never pretended to be…but I never ever wanted to be the kind of mother that could ever make her child feel like she wasn’t loved.  It was - to say the very least - an incredible eye opener.

Of course I reassured her the best I could and I know I was successful.  We hugged and she kissed me on the cheek and told me she loved me too. And that I was the best mummy in the world.

And so my kids have taught me another valuable lesson.  It was a tough night but it’s over now.  They are in bed - after a few re-tuck-ins - and I have turned to my blog as therapy.

Writing this all down makes it real…makes me accountable for my actions…and will serve as a reminder that my words and actions have an significant impact on my kids…even more so than I may ever have imagined.

I am a big believer in the edict that “whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” and I will be mighty strong after this.

After tucking the girls in and pouring myself a rum and coke that was more rum than coke - I put a quick note on Facebook.  It said simply “Remind me again…kids are a blessing right?”.

It was a move that was purely self-serving (especially since I hadn‘t fessed up to the fact that I was completely in the wrong) but I was looking for reassurance from my mummy friends. Reassurance that every mother has these moments.  And I got it.

Because of course I am not alone.  We are all human.  We all make mistakes.  And no matter how much I may feel sorry for myself.  No matter how many times I might wish that I had more time for myself rather than having to put my kids first all the time.  No matter what…I wouldn`t change this for anything. 

Not for anything.

Phew…confession complete. Feels good.

Tomorrow is a new day and since I cant do anything to change was has happened I will instead put my focus on making it up to my girls.  With lots of fun, hugs, reassurances and - most likely - way too much ice cream.

That should make us all feel better.


  1. You are SO not alone. Mine have also discovered that saying no and not listening have minimal consequences compared to what I ask of them, and I sometimes feel like I've lost all control! And they're still young, I'm really getting fearful of the teen years, eek! But it always passes, and they soon forget our mean mommy voices :)

  2. In years to come when M & T are grown up and they reread your blog postings, they will know beyond a shadow of a doubt what a wonderful, loving Mother you have been. Your from the heart, I'm only human words are a wonderful legacy.