As mothers, I think we all tend to be a little too hard on ourselves when it comes to raising our children. Just yesterday I turned on the news and was coldly slapped in the face with the latest “evidence” that proves, once again, how I am doing it all wrong. Am I raising healthy, productive individuals, or am I failing them miserably?
It is within this atmosphere of critical scrutiny that I’ve decided to bare all to my sister mothers, to prance around in my dirty laundry for all to see, judge, and compare. Do not read on if you are faint of heart or have high blood pressure.
Welcome to my shame…
I allow my kids to watch more than two hours of television a day. I am not lazy or uneducated or even unkind. I just seriously do not believe that the things I do right, like reading to them, exposing them to art and culture, demanding good manners, having family meals, etc. will all be for naught because I let them watch a Dora the Explorer marathon every now and then. To be honest, there have been days when the tube was never even turned off.
I did not give my kids a single vegetable last night for dinner. Sure, I usually do, but last night was crazy, so I tossed fish sticks and tater tots in front of them. And ya know what? They loved it. I did, too. Yes, they also eat vegetables and know all about healthy foods, yet I bet there is a study somewhere that links tator-tot consumption to obesity.
Is laying around in your jammies considered "sloth"? —>
Last Saturday, my entire family, including me, laid around the house all day in our PJs. We ate popcorn on the sofa and played several rousing games of Hungry, Hungry Hippo. It was decadent and lazy, and FUN! I’ll say it: I’d do it again… maybe next Saturday. That’s just how I roll.
Some nights I don’t read a story to my boys before bedtime! Uh huh, they go to bed without the benefit of such classics as Goodnight Moon and Curious George every now and then. Will this consign them to the ranks of the unemployable?
My 5-year-old has seen a PG movie. That’s right! It was an old Superman movie, and we watched it together in case it got too scary. It didn’t, and we had a ball playing superhero afterward.
My youngest son almost exclusively eats white and tan food. If it weren’t for Flintstone vitamins he’d probably have scurvy! Sure, I insist on the “one-bite rule” for every other colorful thing on his plate, but I don’t force him to scarf down more than that one bite. Am I a criminal?
And, the biggest offense? —>
I spank my children, too. Not often, but I do it without guilt. I’ve even done it IN PUBLIC, boldly announcing to horrified onlookers what I was about to do, so they’d know that it wasn’t an out-of-control outburst, but a planned course of action. It’s amazing what a firm swat on the butt can accomplish.
So here they are; my seven deadly sins of modern-day motherhood. I hope my confession resonates with some moms out there who live the imperfect, trying, and also wonderful life of the average mom.
Let us all forgive ourselves and simply love our kids. At the end of the day, all our children will remember are the hugs and the kisses. Not the tater tots.