I mom fail all over the place.
It’s a special talent I have.
Sometimes it’s something my kids notice, like when I put the wrong sandwich in the wrong kids’ lunchbox and the kid who hates turkey gets a turkey sandwich and the kid who hates peanut butter gets peanut butter. Or maybe a little more serious like snapping at one of my kids not really for something they did but because I’m tired and out of patience.
Other times it’s something embarrassing – either to my kids or even to me- like when I forgot my umbrella when it was pouring and seriously considered ditching my shoes and running barefoot across the school parking lot with a beach towel over my head to go pick up my child from school. On his first day of middle school, just to make it even more interesting.
Or when one of my kids groans about being told to take a shower and fires back at me that he’s not used to taking showers because all summer long we just went to the pool every day and so he didn’t have to. And while that’s not completely correct, there’s way more truth in that than I’m comfortable with.
And then are the times when I laugh at something I should probably stop. Like my second grader calling Uranus and Venus the “private” planets: Uranus is obvious and Venus rhymes with penis, as he explained to me. When he decides to share that bit of wisdom with his class, I’ll probably still laugh even when the teacher calls to tell me about it.
So yeah, I have plenty of mom fail moments.
And if I focus on just those, I can feel like a huge failure. Like a bad mom.
But then my kids remind me that I don’t just have mom fails.
When one goes out of his way to be kind to another child.
When another works hard to improve at school.
When another shows me how comfortable he is with who he is, at a time when so many other kids are changing to try to fit in.
The mom fails stick out because I focus on what I should change or sometimes even because they make for a really funny story. But they don’t define me as a mom.