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9 Not-So-Proud Parenting Moments

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:

  1. 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!
  2. 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!
  3. 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
  4. 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
  5. 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
  6. 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?
  7. 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?
  8. When I fed my kids pizza bagel bites for breakfast for about 3 months straight. They’re bagels, right?
  9. 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!!

 

 

 

Posted in deanna, deanna verbouwens, The Little Buggers

My #1 Job as a Mom

The other day I forwarded my 13-year-old son a text I received from his teacher. It was one of those reminder texts that notify me about assignments, tests, or even something sweet like “Happy Weekend,” which I love. I love being in-the-know, and it makes me feel that the teacher cares.  Nevertheless, within minutes of hitting send, the little rat bastard promptly replied, “I know; I get the texts too.” Wherein, I responded as fast as my big thumbs would allow me: “My #1 job as a mom is to nag you. And I believe I am killing it if I do say so myself.”

Because it’s so damn true. The definition of the word nag – “continuous urging.” That really says it all for me, and I bet for most parents.

naɡ

verb // 1. annoy or irritate (a person) with persistent fault-finding or continuous urging.

“She constantly nags her son about the importance of being a good person.”

As a parent, I have to continuously urge my children to do a lot of things — not just the things that bring a little relief into my life like straighten their room, bring the laundry down or take out the garbage. I also continuously urge (like how I did that?) them to do the right thing and help them understand that certain things they need to do in life will help them ‘do life’ as a productive member of society.

On a daily basis, I continuously urge my children to be kind, caring, loving. I continuously, like a broken record, urge them to be respectful to themselves and others, to selflessly give of themselves without wanting something in return. I continuously urge them to open doors for other people, pick litter off the ground, look people in the eye when they are talking, to do these things so they become good people. Cause being a really good salt-of-the-earth person is, to me, a very important thing to be in life.

And my boys can tell you that I continuously urge, ummm, nag (totally works here!) them about the importance of being a really good person.

So, even though my bratty son never replied to my text, I stand by it. I am killing it as a nag! And I take the job of being a nag very seriously. I mean, if my sons become really good people (and they will cause I’ll continuously urge them to do the right thing) AND have the ability to carry 10 lbs. of laundry down two flights of stairs – well, I’ll say I hit pay dirt as a parent (and their future spouses will love me!)! #winning

 

 

 

 

Posted in deanna, deanna verbouwens, The Little Buggers

I Am An Average Mom

average

  • I pack my boys’ homemade lunches every day, healthy too! – HA!
  • I get all the laundry done every day – well, it does depend on the week
  • I help my children with their homework – mostly never, I’m on special projects – the Hubs handles homework
  • Their clothes are always ironed – all of the time, it’s an obsession of mine
  • I clean my house – rarely ever — I outsourced that job
  • I get my children to school on time – more often than not
  • I cook a seven-course healthy meal for my family every night – not exactly
  • I listen intently to every word that comes out of my son’s mouth – 99% of the time – I trained myself to stop what I am doing (even if it’s mid-wipe) to listen to my sons, if they’re talking I am listening (mostly!)
  • I attend every single game of my sons – seriously? Not only is that impossible but sitting at a 9-year-old baseball game is like watching paint dry for 2 hours
  • I never scream at my children – hello, do you know me? I am Italian and from New York
  • I am consistent with my threats and always follow through – totally working on this

When I was away with my besties on our ‘girls weekend’ we were barely two hours and five ciders into yucking it up, feeding off cheese, downing wine, rum chatta and shoving nine months of barely seeing each other into a 53-hour weekend that I proudly and honestly declared to my friends that “I am an average mom.” That I am nowhere close to knocking the cover off the ball of this thing called “Motherhood.” I am not making home-made costumes for Halloween, there are no seven course meals at my house, my laundry is barely folded and put away. I forget to the move the Elf – – on the daily.  And sometimes I rerun the dishwasher cause I don’t want to unload it – c’mon – there are more dirty dishes (don’t you dare fucking judge me, I am completely aware that I am ruining the environment when I take that extremely lazy route). Oh! If I can outsource any job in my house, I will.

One a scale from child protective services to June Clever. I am right in the middle.

I am an average mom.

I mean – the name of my blog could have given ya a clue right? Me and motherhood, 12 years later and we’re still getting acquainted.

My children know it too.  When I told my youngest son that we have to bring in cupcakes for his in-school birthday party – he said “Can we please make cupcakes? I don’t want to be one of those kids that bring in store bought cupcakes.”  I kid you not – this is verbatim from my soon- to-be nine-year-olds mouth – ya see, he was that kid for eight years- he knows damn well that I am average too.

My ride-and-dies agreed. None of us feel like we are living up to the expectations of what some of the other moms in our world are doing – the pressure of parenting is … So. Much. All. The. Time.

Who is holding us to the fire and putting this pressure on us? Is it the mom whom plans the insanely fun playdates?  The parenting magazines that tell us to bento box our kids lunches? The stay-at-home dad who built the ‘American Ninja Warrior’ course in his back yard? Could it be the endless declarations from parents across the globe (mmmm Facebook) that their kiddos are on the high honor roll, just hit a homer on their elite travel baseball team or that little Susie took the stage at Carnegie Hall?  Or is it the senseless expectations I put on myself when the little buggers came screaming into world?

It’s definitely all of it, but mostly the expectations that I put on myself.  Why would I do that? Did I watch way too many Brady Bunch episodes?  Wait, that couldn’t be cause I am clearly in the running with Peg from Married with Children.

Let’s face it –being a parent is hard. It’s hard if you stay-at-home (frankly I think it’s harder if you’re a SAHM/D) and it’s hard if you go and foster a career. And it is by far 150% harder if you going at this parenting thing alone.

My “Come-to-Jesus” moment was when I realized it was okay to be an average mom.  I could breathe knowing that it is okay that some weeks I may just decoupage the crap out of some school project and other weeks it is perfectly find to run last-minute to 7-11 to bring in stale store-bought cupcakes.

About two weeks after I made my average mom declaration to my best friends I was in the car with my sons and husband.  From the back seat of the car I hear my 12-year-olds voice “Mom, Dad” , I quickly turn down the music, I mean it is the rare moment he looked up from his phone – “in class this week we had to pick a person we wanted to sit on a bench and talk to.”  Before I could say so “who did you pick?” The 12-year-old said “Do you know who I picked?” I instantly thought it was his dad or either one of his grandfather’s — I mean his dad is his hero, as well as his grandfathers. Over the hum of the tires rolling down the road the 12 year-old sweetly stated “I picked you Mommy.”  In complete shock — tears filled my eyes, I  proudly looked over at my husband- I must admit in an ‘in-your-face-moment’- I BEAMED with joy, I mean, this was my total Sally Field moment  – my sons never pick me over their fun daddy!

Well hot-damn – I’ll be an average mom any day of the week!

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