Monday, May 09, 2011
Wednesday, May 04, 2011
I’m not a big leftover fan. There’s something about food past its prime, slowly rotting in small plastic containers that just doesn’t work for me. Oh, I try. Some leftovers work out just fine. Unfortunately, most leftovers don’t make it past the 4-day-in-the-fridge rule in our house.
Yesterday was a low point for me. I picked up Kayla from school and we went home as usual and I continued working – just like any day. Something went wrong with the items I was working on and I had to shut down interacting with her for a few minutes to “put out the fire”. Once we resumed working on her homework, my stress was at an all time high.
We went to pick up Zach and Abby from daycare. Things got worse from there – Zach could not stop misbehaving, Abby kept screeching and crying and doing stiff board tantrums. My fatigue got the best of me and I went into survival mode. We ate cereal for dinner (pop tarts for dessert!). I put on a movie for the kids after dinner and I sat with them and watched it. At that moment, I realized that what my kids get on most days is “leftover mommy”. Leftover mommy has already given her best for the day.
I put it in high gear to get out the door in the morning to get Kayla to school on time and me to work. I powered through the series of meetings, interactions, conflicts, and projects that consist of a typical day at the office. I rushed to get Kayla from school and then simultaneously did one home related project (a personal goal for each day) and continued working while helping Kayla with her homework. By the time I picked up Zach and Abby – the fresh, tasty, healthy, gourmet mommy was gone. Leftover mommy was there.
Leftover mommy shows up too often in our house – even with my best efforts to keep her away. Sometimes caffeine helps, but that likely causes “high-strung yelling mommy” to come out and she is much worse.
Even though I’m not always the mom I want to be, I pray that my kids see “real mommy” most of the time. Real mommy apologizes when she yells too much, kisses hurts away, hugs and loves even when kids are mad or sad, and does her best to care for their needs and let them know how much she loves them. Real mommy tries not to let the other mommies visit too much, but the truth is, sometimes they are there.
One thing I know for sure is that “perfect mommy” is never here. But I’ve decided I don’t like her very much. She is much too obsessive and critical to live with. It’s best that she not have the key to this house.
I know I don’t always have it together, but I’m thankful that the unconditional love shared between my children and I is strong enough to weather these different mommies. God’s mercies are new every morning.
What mommy (or daddy) are you today?