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Am I A Bad Mom?
My eleven year old son woke up this morning and instead of the normal breakfast food most people eat, I must confess he ate last nights dinner, left-overs. Taco Hamburger Helper and green beans warmed up in the microwave. Yep, I said microwave and left-overs. Does that make me a bad mom? Should I feel guilty?
I have to confess that most mornings that’s what he prefers to eat. Some mornings I do offer the normal breakfast feast, but that’s very rare since he really doesn’t like to eat breakfast food in the morning, so I usually just nuke the heck out of the left-overs and let him eat what he wants to. And on occasion, he’ll have oatmeal or pop-tarts, doughnuts and sometimes even bologna. I know, I know. I know what you’re thinking. Really? Yes really!
It’s true what people say about getting older and more relaxed the more kids you have. It’s 100% true. I am a mom of five. Four of my kids are adults now and I only have my son that I am raising. And I can tell you that when my adult children were younger you would have never caught me serving dinner or junk food for breakfast. We had rules. And they followed them. Well, most of the time. LOL But I was a lot different then compared to now. Even my older kids say I let my youngest get away with stuff they never would have. Does that make me a bad mom?
I use to be the young mom and I was proud of it. You know, the cute, hot, skinny, young thing that all the other parents were, well let’s just say, jealous of. I popped kids like they were rabbits and within two months I was back in my skinny jeans. Yep! I was a lot different then.
It wasn’t until my I had my fifth child that the huge changes came. The drooping breasts, stretch marks, sagging this and sagging that. Well you get the picture. And now, when we attend the first day of school, I’m the older mom. Can I admit here that sometimes I hate it. I miss being the young mom. I miss the sneers and looks of envy. I miss being able to actually fit in the playground swing comfortably while my kids played and I sat and watched. I miss having the energy to chase the kids around the ball field without getting winded in the least. I miss being able to pull an all-nighter when one of the kids was sick and still be able to function the next day. Now if I go without sleep, I can’t even walk to the bathroom much less function in a normal capacity. There are a lot of things I miss, but there are a lot of things I don’t miss.
I don’t miss the impatience I felt trying to potty train my child. I don’t miss losing my temper over the smallest things, like a messy house or mud tracked in on the carpet. I don’t miss losing my patience when one of my children wanted me to read the same story over and over. I don’t miss the frustration I felt when one of the kids spilled something on my freshly mopped floor. I don’t miss yelling at my three-year for scribbling with a crayon on my newly painted walls. I don’t miss feeling like my kids would never ever grow up. No, I don’t miss that at all. Because if I had to do it over again, I would have been more patient, more tolerant, less angry, less worried and less frustrated. I would have smiled and laughed more and treasured each moment, the good and the bad.
It’s strange how time has a way of putting things into perspective. The things I sometimes think I miss: youth, energy, gorgeous skin, shiny glimmering hair, skinny thighs, well you get the picture. When I really sit and think about it, I don’t really miss that at all. What I truly do miss the most is the sweet smell of a freshly bathed baby snuggled in the bed with me and the butterfly kisses of their chubby cheeks. A child’s hug and the look of their eyes gazing full of trust into mine and knowing they are secure in my arms. My girls playing dress up and wearing mommy’s high-heels. The squeals of gleeful joy as my sons jump up and down on the bed for the hundredth time. The giggles, the laughter and even the messes. Snuggling on the couch watching the same Disney movie DVD play over and over and over. Yes, I miss it. I truly do miss it. And now that I’m an older mom I can truly appreciate the little things in life that when I was younger I took for granted.
I don’t stress anymore if my child has the so-called proper breakfast. I don’t worry about the mud being tracked in and his toys all over the floor. I don’t stress over his messy room. We have rules, I promise you that, but definitely I have relaxed at being a parent and I’m truly trying to take it all in before it’s over. I know the empty nest is near and I truly, with all my heart dread that day. When there’s no longer a child to call out, “I’m hungry or bored.” Or just, “MOM!” So, I tend to give in when it doesn’t really matter. Who cares if my son has left-overs. As long as he gets a balanced diet most of the time and is healthy, there’s enough to stress over than worrying about that. Does that make me a bad mom?
I’d like to leave you with these thoughts: The things that you think are important when you put it into perspective are not as important as you think. It’s the little things in life that you will remember as you get older and find joy in. The funny little quirks your children have, the inconvenient moments, like when your toddler spills the dog dish and sits splashing in the water just as you were getting ready to head out the door. The silly faces and even more silly potty jokes that seven-year old’s love. A ten-year old’s gales of laughter as he makes farting noises with his arm. The sweet moments when your thirteen year old son learns to shave. The moment in time when you discover your little girl is growing up and has moved into puberty. Their first boy or girl friend, first date, first kiss, first car, first job and finally the pivotal moment when they graduate into life. These are the things you’ll miss. These are the things I miss. So if my eleven year old son eats doughnuts for breakfast or left-overs from the night before, or even bologna, I really don’t mind at all, because it’s the little moments like this that I will treasure for the rest of my life. Does that make me a bad mom?
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