I had to post this. Had to. It’s because it’s what I think most mothers go through to an extent, but their child never realises it. I call it “Chronic I’m-Not-As-Good-A-Mother-As-I-Thought-I-Would-Be”. What I hope Heather realises is that there are other mothers in the world, including me, who would love to be a perfect mother, or at least live up to their own expectations.
And here’s the part of the newsletter where I usually fail miserably at trying to rein in the urge to get gushy about the extent to which you change my world every hour, except this month I’m not going to do that because I feel instead that I should apologize, that I owe you that more than anything else. Sometimes I worry that the most vivid memory you are going to have of me from this time is the scowl on my face. Often I am ashamed that I am not the mother I thought I was going to be.
Mothers fail, here and there, just like everyone else. It’s hard for us, because inside we want to love and nurture, and we worry that the few times when we are not the parents we want to be, is going to be what’s remembered the most.
I think part of it is that we haven’t learned to appreciate our own parents enough. I give my parents credit for being able to deal with 3 children and all their eccentricities, our curfew jumping, the occasional car rolling (not me!)..everything. Kids can be a handful, and I think we were a big handful at times. I do give them credit, but there were things about child-rearing I just didn’t get until I had my own.
I just have one child. Sometimes she is the one helping me, instead of the other way around. But every day, I love her no matter what, and sometimes I wonder, “How will she think of me” tomorrow or next year or 30 years from now. It’s the thing that keeps me trying to meet my own expectations. That, and that face that says, “Good God… where did THAT come from?” 🙂