Jill, at Scary Mommy, is looking for other moms who are scary. I fit the bill. What do you think? Comments help decide the winner, so please let me know! If you wouldn’t mind visiting Scary Mommy and commenting on how much you like this post, I’d owe you one!
As I sit here trying to figure out what makes me a Scary Mommy, I’m not sure where to begin. Depending on who you ask, it could be any number of my ‘best’ mom qualities that make me terrifying. Most of my scary tendencies are related to making life better for my girls or taking care of them. Or at least my efforts to do so.
My poor husband is subjected to ‘planning nights” more often than you’d think, considering the lack of organization and planning that most of my days revolve around. I’ll sit at my computer, search for recipes, housecleaning ideas, general info on how to make life with kids healthier and more comfortable. I could write a book. I couldn’t follow it. I have a database of recipes that I’ve never tried, and a decluttering and organizational plan sitting on my desk (under a pile of papers, but I’m sure it’s there somewhere!). I’m not much for schedules or organized activities, but try to veer from the few routines that I do follow, and watch out! Especially bedtime. Do not even attempt to get in the way of the bedtime routine.
On days that I get dressed before preschool drop off, I’m so proud of myself. Dressing by 9 is a feat. We are always the last ones to school, Poor M is usually the last one picked up – though she loves that – and I’ve usually forgotten something. Never mind the time I had to send her to school with a sandwich made of chocolate frosting and Sunbutter because I ran out of her favorite chocolate soy butter. Shhh. Don’t tell her!
I have the reputation of being a drill sergeant in my family. I’m the one who doesn’t let people babysit just because they want to. I don’t often let anyone watch the girls elsewhere. Maybe I’m a control freak, or maybe I wonder why you’re so interested in being alone with my kids? Come visit…no need to hang with them only when I’m not there. Believe me, and if you call me uptight to my face, you’re not going to be alone with the girls. I have my rules for a reason. I expect them followed. You tell me my rules are stupid? You have your answer to why I never ask you to babysit. My mother told me that I’m ‘petty’ when it comes to things that I don’t want my kids exposed to…you know, things like yelling, cigarettes, things they are allergic to. Yes, I’m nuts.
I can be neurotic. I’ll admit. I worry about everything. I won’t take the girls to the park or beach by myself, because I get overwhelmed. I try to do errands during school, so I only have to go out with one of the girls. The thought of taking both of them out is frightening to me and creates a snowball effect. Everything seems tougher. The thought of putting a few diapers and wipes in a bag suddenly feels like a daunting task. I’m not a spur of the moment kind of mom. I need to plan. If I’m going somewhere in the morning, I start stressing about it at night. How will I fit in my shower? What do I pack for Abs to eat (severe food allergies make everything more difficult!) Will I get back in time to pick up M?
I’m ok with being less-than-perfect. I would not be ok with perfection. I yell, I cry. I worry about some of my actions sticking in their heads when they’re adults. Who wants their child to remember getting screamed at? Or being scared by my angry face? Other than that, the last thing I need is to care about looking good all the time, having overscheduled kids who have no time to play or making fancy meals that go uneaten. I don’t care to make parenting look effortless. It’s hard work. I can’t relate to anyone who suggests otherwise. I am constantly second-guessing myself when it comes to my kids. I want to make sure I’m doing my best for them, and I worry about those who don’t occasionally wonder if they could be doing better. With many things, ‘Good enough’ is ok. Not with my kids. I don’t want to do just an ok job with them.
How could this not stress me out?