I REALLY wish I was a super mama. Like the kind who are always put together and killing it at meal prep. Instead of being dressed in age appropriate clothing, I’m almost always schlepping it in athletic running shorts and t-shirts older than my children. AND I DON’T EVEN RUN, guys! The extent of my meal planning is to write out a bunch of supper ideas, grocery shop accordingly, and then not fix any of that junk because it takes too long.
I’m also kinda bummed that I don’t have a sweet voice that never gets loud when my sweet children run through the house alternating between making clicking sounds with their tongues and whistling. There isn’t enough patience in all the land to deal with a 4 year old learning how to whistle. Promise.
I get a lot of compliments on how well behaved my children are, how it seems like I’ve got it all together (whatever IT is, I’m still not sure), and that Pat and I just look so happy.
I thank you for all of that, but it’s a farce.
For some reason, my children think scratching and pinching each other in the eye sockets is the only way to effectively communicate. I was up twice this week after 11 pm dragging dogs back into a crate they’d busted out of while I was in my pajamas. Pat and I fight at least twice a week about how long he takes getting out of bed every day.
Farce, I tell ya.
I don’t have the patience to deal with children who misbehave. That’s why mine act like they’ve got some sense when we’re out in public. I don’t have the patience to get 4 humans dressed every day, so three of them have been taught how to mostly do it themselves. I don’t have the patience to hear Pat hit his snooze button for a fifth time, so that’s why there’s a good bit of yelling during the morning rush at our house.
Life at my house is loud. No matter how much I PLEAD for it not to be.
We’re always in a rush. You try getting all these people out of the door. That patience I felt like I needed to stay sane flies right out the window on the daily. Sanity will come later in life, I figure. For now, I’m just surviving. Seriously, I’m not really parenting, I’m just herding flippin’ cats.
We eat breakfast in the car and at work because ain’t nobody got time for more than a pack of muffins or a handful of dry cereal on week days. I’ve accepted that and am at peace with having to do one less thing like eat breakfast at a table 5 days a week.
I thought all of my experience with teaching children would just do wonders for me as a mama. In all actuality, these babies we’ve got don’t wear my patience thin…It was never that thick to begin with.
I did think I’d be able to handle EVERYTHING that comes our way with some much grace and poise, but again, I’ve found my peace.
How, you ask?
I brought Amos to the daycare one day last week without any shoes. I sat a pizza box on top of the blanket Porter takes every week, so it smelled like Little Caesar’s for a few days. I let Margaret Hannah wear her dirty tie-dye socks 3 days in a row because it would have required patience on my end to deal with the meltdowns she was working up. Hank’s lunch money balance was low and I didn’t have any cash, so he at Peanut butter and honey sandwiches 4 days straight.
At peace with every bit of that.
It’s not easy, and I don’t want other mama’s to look at us and think that it is. Being in the trenches is stressful and trying and character building. But I’m a total PRO at picking my battles. At maintaining a level of sanity that works for all of us.
What I want other mamas to see when they look at us is how much we love each other DESPITE the yelling. To see the life lessons we’re trying to teach our pack EVEN THOUGH one of them is picking their nose in the checkout line. To see that patience isn’t really a virtue when you’re raising children, it’s a way to get your walls colored on.
And nobody wants that.
So be loud together, teach your babies good manners and how to put their shoes on by themselves, and go out to eat so you don’t get too stressed over having to cook and clean up after a meal if you can. Find that level you need to stay sane, to call “being patient.”
That way we look a little more normal, ok?
What are 2 things you do that seem like patience and good parenting to the outside but are really just your ways for coping with mama stress? I can’t wait to read them!