March 20, 2012

not a Robot so a Bitch?

Something ridiculous happened the other day: I purposely made my sweet, 2 year-old girl cry.

What kind of mother does that?

Don’t answer; I know the answer already! And that’s not at all who I am...the type of mother I am.

When I PMS, it’s something fierce. I get extremely irritable and uncomfortable. Lately the cramps wrap around my body to my back, too. This is when I want nothing more than to rock myself in a dark corner of a room with all the shit food I could jam down my pie hole.  Honestly, the PMS gets so bad that I tend to shy away from people to avoid evil looks or comments that I may emit. But my kid? My sweet little 2 year old girl? I can’t really stay away from her.

So Sunday- after playing at the park, eating lunch, and napping- Lovie was playing with some play-dough in her high chair (the only place I’ll allow her to play with it- strapped in and play-dough in site). And I joined her. Make a snowman, Mama? Make a house? Make a dog? Make Zoe? (the cat)

At one point I was making a dog and she went to grab for the play-dough to Make a big circle and I barked, “NO!”

I didn’t hesitate. I didn’t say it quietly. I barked at her. 

Like a fucking mad dog. 

A bitch.

She quickly took back her hand and looked down at her play-dough and I thought I was going to vomit from disgust.

WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH ME THAT I WOULD BARK AT MY GIRL OVER FUCKING PLAY-DOUGH?!?

“Honey,” I said, still squishing the dough. “I’m sorry; I didn’t mean to yell like that.”

She wouldn’t look at me.

I touched her silky soft chin and told her again, very gently, how sorry I was.

When our eyes met… well… I’m honestly not sure how I held the vomit inside. But I did. And instead, I let the tears out as hers rolled down her sweet round cheeks.

“Please don’t cry, baby girl,” I said, “Mama didn’t mean that; I’m really so very sorry.”

She looked so unbelievably sad...and hurt.

And it was because of me- her mama.

Shortly after, she cheered up- we both did. Daddy gave her a bath and got her dressed for bed. We all watched Bubble Guppies- Lovie on her little chair, me sprawled on the couch with my phone playing Words with Friends, the husband trying to download more episodes.

After a minute she looked back at me and got up and climbed onto the couch to sit with me. Like she does every single night.

I sat more upright so I could get my arm around her as she folded into me. Every so often she’d gently lay her head on my breast or tummy. I scooped her into me more closely so that she melted into me. 

My Lovie and me.

That’s the mama I am- the one she leans on whenever she needs, the one she snuggles with every night, the one who reads her favorite stories over and over and over again, the one who sings silly songs with her...

Not that mean bitch who wouldn’t let her play with the play-dough.

It’s one thing for my child to be upset at me because we have to leave the park, but for something like barking at her? Hell No. It’s unacceptable. And it will not happen again. It can't. We both are better than that.

I mean, I totally get this kind of stuff happens with parenting. We're not friggin robots, we're human beings and sometimes even the most patient (of which I absolutely am not) lose it sometimes. And I know... I know she won't remember this one incident. But the thing is, I have a feeling if I just let it go and not really acknowledge it, I'll fall back on these same excuses again and again and my behavior will snowball. And she will start remembering and probably start behaving in the same fashion. Then what?

It's just something I really don't want to find out. And besides all that, she deserves more from me.

54 comments:

  1. ME TOO!!! I am seriously like a different person when I'm pmsing and (sadly!) my children get the brunt of my ridiculous, moody verbal outbursts! You are not alone!!! Good thing their little sweet hearts are SO forgiving!!! Don't beat yourself up too much..it happens to the best of us! (and I am absolutely SO impatient as well! Good to know I'm not alone!)

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    1. yeah i figure it's common around that time but it still sucks.

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  2. Oh I HATE when I yell too loud and PJ looks at me with the sad, sad face. Maggie's doing it too now. I don't do it often, and I definitely do it less now with Mags then I did before so that's good. Poor kids.

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    1. i'm glad i'm not alone, but it still sucks.

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  3. I feel you. I've done that before, and it's such a horrible feeling - immediately realizing that it was a huge overreaction, that they're crushed, and that there's nothing I can do to take it back. I try to get better, but that just goes to show I keep doing it (and keep feeling badly) or I wouldn't have to say that.

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  4. I don't know if you remember when this happened with me and Ada? It was about a year ago just a couple of days after I miscarried (well, had a baby sucked out of my uterus is more accurate). I've never, ever felt so horrible in my whole entire life. It stayed with me and is still with me - how terribly I hurt her feelings over something she didn't even understand and wasn't responsible for. I wanted so feverishly to take it back. Since I couldn't we moved on and I hope to God she is more forgiving of me than I am of myself. I still feel like complete shit when I think of it. Hugs to you mama.

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    1. i do remember, Ada- of course. :( i'm sorry to conjur that up again. i KNOW they're not going to remember these few times we lose it but it still hurts when they hurt. but i guess it always will, huh? hugs right back atcha.

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  5. Being aware of it will prevent it from happening. Kids, or adults even, know when they are loved. Your little one knows it. That's the important thing. No need to beat yourself up.. too much, anyway!

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    1. AMEN. sometimes i think i'm too aware of things i do or don't do but then i think about my youth and realize that when it comes to parenting, there really isn't such a thing as being too aware, IMO.
      thanks for your comment.

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  6. PMSing and utterly bitchy as I read this post - on behalf of all PMSing bitchy mamas who mean no harm but do bark when pre-menstrual (and don't talk about it so often) - thank you.
    It's great that you apologized to her and taught her that you can make mistakes and know how to say sorry too. At least this is what I tell myself when this sort of thing happens at our house. (-:

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    1. i think you're right about apologizing to her. she may only be 2 but she's absorbing every little thing and if i can't show her that i make mistakes, what will happen when she starts making them? it's just so hard to see her hurt though.

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  7. It will happen here and there, and you will feel awful again, but you are human. We try to be so perfect all the time, to not be that mom, but all we can do is be the best slightly imperfect mom we can be. They will forgive us because they are so loved and they will learn that not everyone is perfect.

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    1. exactly... exactly! thank you for this. :)

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  8. Aw, everyone has moments of weakness... don't beat yourself up too much

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  9. Moms aren't given enough credit if you ask me. I think you show an incredible amount of patience everyday and a slip up every now and then is to be expected. And it says so much about you that you would recognize not wanting to slip up...the people who are in danger of doing any damage don't even realize what they do could be damaging. I'm with Gia, don't beat yourself up!

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    1. i couldn't agree more about the ones doing real damage don't even realize it- or maybe they do but the do nothing about it (kinda how i grew up... i do think people realize what they're doing, but just don't know how to fix it sometimes)

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  10. I hope you feel better. Parenting is the hardest, most nerve fraying job. And the stakes are so high because they are based in love. You are doing fine momma. Ellen

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    1. thanks, Ellen. i do feel a bit better today- thank you.

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  11. Oh DAMN that PMS!!! It does terrible things to me too. I try really hard to just bite my tongue and keep things in check, but sometimes we all slip. Don't be too hard on yourself.
    xo

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    1. you'd think after 30 years of having PMS, i'd be able to control myself better. i think that's what irks me the most about it all.

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  12. I think you did the right thing. I mean, everyone makes mistakes sometimes, but acknowledging it (not just to yourself, but to her...which you did) makes all the difference. Everyone gets off-course sometimes, but talking about it, openly and honestly like this, is the best way to change direction. So: good for you!

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    1. i think so, too. and i hope by doing so- by putting it out there so publicly- i can maybe catch myself BEFORE i do it next time.

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  13. Great post! And I can so identify. We all have those dreadful PMS moments.

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  14. I know that look. I saw it in the eyes of my baby sibs as they were growing up. And no, it's no fun. Worst part is, I know my mom made me feel the same way. It scared me that I was perpetuating those feelings. It gives me a lot to think about when the time comes for my own children.

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    1. it's good to think about, to be aware. that's how we break the pattern.

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  15. Christina, I have a temper. I am able to control my temper better these days, but it takes work. My mother had a temper. I remember her fits - I remember how I felt, etc. I hold on to that feeling for the sole purpose of remembering to say "I'm sorry." I often wonder if my Mom's temper wouldn't have scared me as much if she had taken the time to say 'I'm sorry.' Had she let me know what she was doing was not good - had she let me know she should have tried harder - perhaps I would have felt less scared, scolded and insecure. I'll never know.

    But. I apologize every time I bark. I tell my boys it is not good. I tell my boys it is my problem. And, I remind my boys I love them. I don't bark daily. My barking is under control. But, when I slip - I acknowledge the slip and I apologize. No, I am not a robot; and no, I am not a bitch. I am a work in progress, and I own my flaws.

    Great post!

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    1. thanks so much for all of this. maybe i'm delusional to think i can stop it from happening again, but i can try... and if i fail, i will keep apologizing and move forward, too. i have to because my parents didn't with me. and she deserves way more than that.

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  16. Like Lenore said I have a temper too. I will forever work on that. I'm also a mom who loves her kids deeply. I screw up. We all do. I apologize and I mean it.

    I love your love for your daughter. They're so precious, aren't they? :)

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  17. We all have mom fail moments in our life. I've overreacted more times than I should have and have had to learn to grow from those mistakes. We're human, we're not perfect. You can't beat yourself up over it, just mental note it for the next time. :) Your Lovie has long forgotten it.

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  18. i know how you feel (both with your daughter and the pms. can the female species please catch a break here??) - but it's clear from your blog that you are a wonderful, loving mother with a fab little girl!

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  19. We all have those moments! As long as we make it right after, we're all only doing the best we can.

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    1. definitely gotta make it right after- at the very least.

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  20. Oh Christina love, you've only just begun!!! Don't beat yourself up because you will do so many other stupid ass stuff to little Lovie with the amazing hair kicking it in her new header that this will pale in comparison.

    ((((hugs))))

    ~The G is Silent

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    1. haha thank you for making me laugh- and noticing the new header. :)

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  21. It's so tough when that growling moment that we meant to hold in actually comes out. I've barked at my son more times than I can count (I don't say that with pride, mind you). It happens, and it does suck, and you're not alone.

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  22. I've had that exact scenario (down to the playdoh only in the high chair!) play out. Crying with the baby and apologizing. It gets easier later - perhaps because of the fear of being remembered that way!

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  23. Don't beat yourself up too much. You quickly realized and apologized for the incident, which is a lot more than some parents would do. Plus, like you said, we aren't robots. As a sidenote - I really like your new header. :)

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  24. In fairness to you, it didn't sound like you really did it on purpose. It just came out. It's hard to deal with everything and the small people in our lives, too, some days. We have ALL been there. And you are teaching her about forgiveness and acceptance, too!

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    1. you're right and i try to see that, too (that i'm teaching her about forgiveness and acceptance) but it just sucks that something i did could cause that pain to her. she's the air i breathe.

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  25. Oh I've been there and since I don't get a period anymore (it's as awesome as it sounds BTW) I can't even blame hormones. I've yelled at my kids more times than I'd care to admit let alone count. Try not to beat yourself up over it, we all do it. It's what seperates us from the robots right?

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  26. Sometimes I have that out of body experience where I feel like I can see myself screaming and thinking internally WTF, man? cool down!
    We've all been there, right? And the good mom realizes it and feels bad for it, but remembers to throw in an extra cuddle after the apology! Way to go, you good mom!

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  27. This sweet, loving post is my first taste of your blog, Christina.

    With this post I learned the kind of woman, and mother, you are. Believe me, no bitch, no cold, uncaring mom, would ever write what you have here. :)

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    1. oh wow. this made me well up. thank you.

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