Good Mom, Bad mom

Sometimes I am a good mom. Really, I am. Other days, I kinda suck. And some days, it goes both ways. Yesterday, I took my kid to the grocery store and ordered a custom cake for his birthday, completely fitting with the "theme" he picked out months ago (what can I say, he likes to be prepared. No, he didn't get that from me.). Good mom. Today, I picked him up 20 minutes late from preschool because I was hurridly trying to finish things at work that should have been easier to get done. When I finally picked him up, Jacob clung to me and told me, "I was so worried about you." Bad mom. After we got home from preschool, we played a rousing game of dominos together, complete with explanations about numbers. Good mom. The dominos game was from Wendy's where we stopped after preschool because I didn't have time to eat lunch. Bad mom. I woke up early with him and read Spiderman in the newspaper with him. Good mom. I just plugged him into the TV to watch "Go Diego Go" while I blog. Bad mom. Sometimes I just feel a little schizophrenic. If you'll excuse me, I have to get some cookies out of the oven to feed to my son while I snuggle with him to watch the last part of Diego. Good mom. The cookies were frozen and came straight out of a package. Bad mom. (sigh)


Blogger nestle said...

OK we must have different views of motherhood. My first knee jerk reaction to going to Wendy's was good mom. Hee hee. As far as "Go Diego Go" my kids are watching Dora right now because they wanted a special surprise and that's what I came up with. Cookies from a pkg. constitute edible cookies in my house so you are one hot mama for doing all of that. Hee heee. I'd love for you to be my mother. I'd have a blast and know you love me. :-)

2/24/2006 06:17:00 PM  
Blogger Tracy M said...

Mine are watching "Aurthur" and they had bowls of Cheetos for lunch because I couldn't stand the smell of anything else today! We're all in the same boat with you, and we are all way to liberal smacking on the BAD mom label. Sounds like you did a pretty darn good job today to me!

2/24/2006 06:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Susan M said...

I know what you mean Heather--there's always things we wish we could do better as parents. But don't get down on yourself about it. Do what you can and don't beat yourself up for what you can't.

2/24/2006 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger annegb said...

Yeah, I'm with Susan. That beating yourself up thing is something I still struggle with. I had a rude awakening when I worked at Wal-Mart for that five weeks or so. Very rude. I could not believe women with children work like that. I was exhausted all the time. I'm still recovering.

I put a message in the ward newsletter telling the sisters that the Visiting Teaching police had been fired and urging them not to run faster than you can walk. I'm born again.

I'm pretty sure Jacob had a good day, and he didn't mind that his warm cookies came from the fridge.

2/24/2006 07:57:00 PM  
Blogger Heather O. said...

I guess it's all a matter of perspective. After my 2nd miscarriage, I literally laid on the couch and stared off into space all afternoon while Jacob watched TV nonstop for about 4 hours, snacking straight from a box of cold cereal. I didn't even bother to get him a bowl. I let him stay up way past his bedtime, went to Wendy's (again) for dinner at about 8:30 because Jacob had finished the box of cereal, and then picked up DH from the airport at around 10:00 at night. Jacob was not asleep or even dressed in his jammies. DH commented on that, and then asked what I did all day.

I told him. I laid on the couch. All day long. Truly.

That's really being a bad mom. I had a good excuse, but I think that if life was like that every day, we'd be in trouble. When you think about things like that, cookies from a package aren't all that big a deal!

2/24/2006 08:14:00 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

I am currently lying on the couch sick with a fever that keeps coming and going (we're hoping it's not my heart again), my sweet dh is on a scout camp-out, and although he left at 4PM and will be back by 10AM tomorrow morning, it feels like forever because:

--The house is a disaster. Literally. 2 days worth of dishes and clothes and cereal all over the floor, blah, etc., blah...
--The kids watched TV ALL DAY. Literally. It was turned on at 8AM and went until....well, the kids are in bed and it's still on...
--I forgot to give them their daily vitamins...again...
--We only read one story all day...
--When my FIL and his fiancee stopped by, I basically told them to leave immediately (luckily it was out of earshot of my kids) because I was too sick to deal with their crap...
--Because this sickness or whatever I have has been on and off all week, I haven't gotten anything done for my calling (I'm PP)...
--Breakfast, lunch, and dinner consisted of whatever I found in the cupboard and the fridge.

So, you know what? WHO CARES. My kids were fed, they laughed all day, they thought eating graham crackers for lunch was great and they still kissed me before bedtime. There are WAY worse things I could do as a mom (like yelling, it's a terrible habit I inherited from my predecessors and am trying very villigently to stop).

We have enough guilt to worry about...don't beat yourself up because you went to Wendy's. And I can't even THINK of the last time I made cookies and then cuddled with my kids while we ate them...Hey, don't get me wrong, this week was a total fluke, but I'm not perfect, and I'm guessing nobody else is either...

(apologies for the tone...told you I'm sick...)

2/24/2006 11:13:00 PM  
Blogger brneyedwahine said...

First of all-I think you are an awesome, well balanced mom. I know as moms go, we all fear that perfection thing....I believe we stress out ourselves too much over that. I had the same fear come over me today as I was helping in my kindergartener's classroom today. I spent six hours there all the while worrying that my daughter who is at the same school (but in second grade) would be jealous of this. I already had plans in my own mind to help out in her class next week and then realized that my oldest in Jr. High is having a talent show where he and his "band" will be playing and I need to go there. Then I took a mental tally of the things I do at the oldest ones school for PTA vs. the the younger two's school for PTA and so forth and then realized, okay- I of got the kids covered semi-decently, but I have YW's (1st counselor) duties, and then the most important, but always seems to be last on the list...dear hubby! What about him!
If I continue on this down-ward spiral, I am reminded of the six loads of laundry that needs to be done, the Monday clean house is now a Friday fiasco---still there is only so much one person can do and I think we need to pick our battles daily, conquer the ones we can and always say a little prayer to help us do the best we can.

2/24/2006 11:32:00 PM  
Blogger Elohimus Maximus said...

mothers who work and raise kids are sinners. you should repent for that.

2/25/2006 02:31:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

She should repent for raising kids? Or for working? Or for doing both?

Who made you God?

2/25/2006 10:34:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"mothers who work and raise kids are sinners. you should repent for that"

Far from the truth....people do the best they can/best they know how.

Who are you to tell people to repent, you are no Prophet.

Heaven forbid you should ever get married or have a wife that has to or wants to work.

Being a mom is the hardest job there is, so I can only think how much harder it is to be a working mother. (among the many other things moms do all the time, you know Jill of all trades!)

2/25/2006 11:24:00 PM  
Blogger annegb said...

LOL, I think somebody got you. I used to get mad, too, until Prudence came along.

You know that thing somebody said on the blog about heaven being like your best family dinner?

Well, today started off lovely with balmy breezes and my daughter came over with her husband to do laundry and I had the baby granddaughter while my husband and our son and other kids went ice fishing.

And I was feeling all relaxed from reading all the humiliating moments of others and I thought, "oh, maybe I could do heaven."

Then I got exhausted and my daughter took her husband to work and the baby wanted to go outside and the dogs went crazy and my husband was late getting home and Princess Buttgold called on the phone sobbing just as the baby stepped off the piano bench.

And I had two girls crying in my ears. It took me a few minutes to figure out Sarah was crying because her toilet ran over for the third time and it wouldn't turn off. I stifled my guffaws long enough to talk her through turning off the water.

And drove over there to help, but I couldn't and she wanted to kill her new husband and Bill came home and left gruffly to help somebody clean their chimney and help Sarah unclog her toilet without eating,

And I fed the baby and chased the dogs and the dog ate the baby's dinner.

And I was just wiped and the baby wouldn't settle down and let me rock her and cried for her daddy and he came and got her and Bill came home and we argued over who had the worst tiring day.

And I've had enough of heaven.

2/26/2006 02:54:00 AM  
Anonymous Sue said...

When I was little, one of nine kids, my mom was a stay at home mom. I don't remember her spending much time at all playing with us, or organizing activities, or making cookies and snuggling with us on the couch. She was way too busy for that. I remember her being around, I remember her being on the phone, etc., but I don't remember her spending a lot of time playing with us. And you know what? I still thought she was a good mom. We all turned out o.k., even though we spent a LOT of time playing out in the backyard, banished from the house. In fact, most of my really happy childhood memories involve games we played outside.

Now I'm not recommending that kind of mothering, but I just think our mothers had different standards of what being a good mom meant, and probably didn't feel as much guilt as we tend to place on ourselves. We have so many conveniences now, and I don't think the actual WORK of motherhood takes as long, so we are free to imagine that we need to fill every moment with "active" mothering, instead of mothering when we aren't busy mopping floors.

That said, I do the exact same good mom/bad mom thing. Every day I have a mental list and judge myself. Sigh.

2/27/2006 01:09:00 AM  
Blogger mindy said...

I told a friend the other day that the fact she was worrying about whether she was a "bad mom" proves she isn't one. Bad moms don't worry about it. They are too busty worrying about themselves.

2/27/2006 01:59:00 PM  

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