As parents, it’s going to happen — those not so proud parenting moments that make you stop in your boots and say, “Maybe that wasn’t the best move.” And for me, those moments probably happen more than most parents. I mean, how many times have you blatantly called your child a “jackass”? Not mumbled it — actually said, “You are a jackass!” to their face? Yep. I told ya. For me, it’s on the reg. Hey, in my book when someone is being a jackass — even a 10-year-old child – you tell them.
Or do you? Ya see, that is where I fail as a parent. The should you or shouldn’t you question doesn’t even pop into my head. Am I missing an automatic mom-filter?
Don’t answer that!
Nevertheless, when the last not-so-proud-parenting moment occurred, I started to think back to all the moments that made me cringe, that still make me feel like a failure (aside from, well, all the time). Those times, after the not-so-proud parenting moment occurred, made me say out loud, “Oh crap, that wasn’t a good parenting move!” I thought I must share them because I can’t be the only parent out there utterly screwing up. So, my friends, below are some of my ridiculous moments as a parent:
- That night when we left a sick kid home to watch the little one so we could attend a dinner dance an hour away from the house. Hindsight, worst move ever; the man-child could barely lift his head from the pillow and was close to hurling chunks. Clearly, I should have stayed home. To make matters worse, we got a flat!
- That time I gave my child spoiled milk for days. (I never checked the date; you ALWAYS check the date!) And yes, he got sick at school!
- The oh so many times I dug dirty laundry out of the basket — deep out of the basket — to dress my children for school. #itwascleanenough
- That time, many moons ago (Need to add that disclaimer!), when we ate fast food 4 out of the 7 nights a week for dinner. I mean, seriously? #GrossButNotGross
- That time I forgot about picture day. The little bugger was wearing a Phineas and Ferb ratty old t-shirt without a clean haircut, and it just happened to be the year with no picture retake day. Or maybe I forgot about that too! #Probablywhathappened
- The day I sat down and talked to my children about ‘stranger danger,’ and my fifth grader ended up in the nurses’ office crying after he walked to school. I scared the pants off him. (Yes, I mentioned kidnapping and maybe went a little too far with the graphics.) What in holy hell was I thinking?
- The lapse in judgement when I told my son to Google his homework answers — literally teaching my children to cut corners. WTF is wrong with me?
- When I fed my kids pizza bagel bites for breakfast for about 3 months straight. They’re bagels, right?
- That day when my son didn’t eat breakfast before his basketball practice. (It was EARLY. He didn’t get up when I tried to wake him. Cut me some slack!) When he came home, he was starving. He didn’t like the options I gave him so I left him $20 to call Domino’s because I had to run some errands. #ParentingFail #whatiswrongwithme
I am sure there are a lot more parenting fails than this. I mean, they are 13 and 10. There certainly can’t be just 9 measly parenting fails in 13 years. But that’s neither here nor there, right? We’re going to fail as parents — more times than we wish. I can rest my head on my pillow at night knowing that these two little buggers are loved. They’re alive! They have clothes on (clean or not, they have clothes on). And to me, that’s a win!!
I rely solely on my GPS or the Waze app to help me navigate the treacherous Long Island roads during rush hour traffic, and basically any other time I am driving and have no idea where I am going. These devices, apps, things, whatever you call them are literally my co-pilot. I listen to this woman’s voice so much that I feel we’ve become good friends. And I often wonder if she really gives a shit about where I am going? Do you think ‘Claire’ loves her job? Giving me directions — Every. Single. Day? Spitting out three different routes to choose from, calculating an estimated arrival time? Does she care that I am geographically challenged? When I make a wrong turn, would Claire rather say, “Listen, dipshit, I said to turn left onto Main Street. Now because of your inability to follow my simple directions, I have to tell you to make a fricking right onto Spruce, a left onto to Oak and then another fucking right onto Cedar street. Just make the FUCKING ILLEGAL U-turn, cause I can’t say REROUTING one more damn time!” I truly think she would. I mean, just think of all the times you told your husband or children something, and they don’t listen. You get pretty aggravated, right? Claire can’t be this even keeled all day long? Something has to tip her bucket? No?
Dear, God, I’ve had a long day.
Is this utterly ridiculous? And I am literally the only person on this planet that thinks their inanimate objects actually have feelings, that named their GPS voice? Please don’t answer that. Let me pretend that Claire exists, that she cares about all of us, and that she is completely happy telling us where to go, even if it is to “Go F$%k ourselves!”
As I lie in bed watching my 1,434th episode of Fixer Upper, it dawned on me I have, once again, totally neglected my plan of being done with Christmas shopping by December 1. You know, so I can enjoy December, instead of being completely frazzled, exhausted, deflated by December 25.
Year after year, I fall into the same trap. I set my goals high at the end of September and am utterly and completely shocked when December 1 rolls around. It is as if the months of October and November never even happened. I look at calendar, and December rolls in and slaps me in the face – just like Cher does to Nicholas Cage in Moonstruck. And I am just as shocked.
I began to wonder why I do this to myself year after year. Why am I putting so much pressure on myself to finish Christmas shopping? Why not embrace the suck of racing around a parking lot trying to find my car, be utterly and completely irrational with my family and friends because we can’t settle on a day to meet up to exchange Christmas greetings, or stand in line at Target for six gazillion hours for gift cards!
Then I stopped.
And those thoughts made me think about all the sucky things I hate about Christmas:
- Elf on the Shelf pressure (Oh, I hate that Elf!)
- Not coming up with the perfect gift for my loved ones
- Wrapping presents. I fricking hate wrapping gifts. Some find it relaxing… not me. I find no joy in it whatsoever.
- The endless eating. I mean, I love to eat, but how many Christmas cookies can one person eat? (Don’t answer that!)
- Stocking stuffers. Just when you thought you were done shopping you remember the F$%King stocking stuffers!
- Christmas cards – I LOVE getting them but hate doing them.
- Egg nog. Listen egg nog you’re not Coquito so stop trying to be it!
- Always being in the holiday spirit. What? You can’t get cranky in December? F^%k that!
Now, don’t pin me for a Scrooge; I am far from one! I really do love the Christmas season — the songs (I mean, Pandora rocks a solid Christmas station!), the sentimental ornaments, the excitement from my boys. It’s just the pressure of the holiday rush that gets to me, which could probably all be AVOIDED if I just got my shopping done before December 1! Oy vey!