Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Worst Mom Ever Who is Not a Felon

I may be the worst mom in the history of ever who is not a felon. I don't beat my kids or abuse them or deny them food, water or Sponge Bob. I am just a horrible mother. It is undeniable.  I gave up my job and what was once a very nice career to focus exclusively on raising my kids. My choice. Because I love the little boogers so much. And because I stupidly thought - this is what's best for them. But I guess I should have stayed at the office because based on today, I am the worst parent ever and I have ruined them. And you know what? That makes it worse because raising these kids is all I do. Turning them into decent adults is my only job and I suck at it.

Would children being raised by a good mother lose their schmidt ten times a day? Would there be daily brawls in the manner of the Mike Tyson ear-biting incident if I had any talent for parenting? Would they pretend that they had no idea pouring out juice boxes in the back of the van in order to make a - direct quote - "evil experiment" was perhaps a wee bit naughty? Would they scream: "You're a idiot! No way Momma! You are mean and so I be mean BACK!" when you ask them nicely for the tenth time to please stop grinding their pencils into the wallpaper or they will have to sit in the thinking chair? Would I need to gently explain that it is not being a good sport to start screaming "You're a damn LIAR!" when your little brother claims he doesn't have any 8's in Go Fish? Would I be forced to say things like: "Please put the tree branch down around the elderly man with the oxygen tank"?

I would not.

I try to explain to my friends how this situation is bad and getting worse. How my lack of ability to manage the small people in my care seems to be careening toward the edge of a cliff. How my six year old's attitude problem and premature-onset Hair Trigger B*tch Syndrome (HTBS) is making me wonder if perhaps I need to start drinking in the morning. How my four year old throws a diva-style hissy fit every time he is denied a Happy Meal.

I try every single day to be the kind of mother they deserve and you know what? It doesn't matter how hard I try because they still go from well-behaved to terror suspects in six seconds. It happens all the time. The following altercation occurred at my house at 7:01pm..

Hawk: "Can I have some dessert?"
Lydia: "Try again."
Hawk: "Huh? Dessert, Momma, I want some dessert."
Lydia: "No. Try. Again. Son."
Hawk: "You are a idiot!" (stomps away and slams door to his room)
Lydia: "I meant say PLEASE as you darn well know!"
Hawk: (stomps back into the kitchen mad as a hornet) "Please can I have some dessert now? Puh-lease?"
Lydia: "No. Because you called me an idiot."
Hawk: "Sorry Momma."
Lydia: "That's OK. But no dessert."
Hawk: "Gaaahhhhhh!" (Incredible Hulk-style rage takes over and he throws a recently purchased 8-pack of paper towels at my ass and then runs away)

Hello early bed time. Good night Hawk.

The kicker is that earlier in the day, for most of the day, he had been a sweet pea. I got three hours of sleep last night. Three interrupted hours of bad sleep in the most uncomfortable chair ever made. So I told him that while the baby napped, I needed to nap too. I never do that. He suggested that I sleep in his bed while he built Lego spaceships, so I could be nearby if he needed me. So that's what we did. He brought me stuffed animals to sleep with and played quietly. At some point he asked if he could watch TV and petted my head. I actually slept for an hour and it was amazing. Of course when I woke up, he was sitting in his dad's recliner watching pay-per-view boxing with a Milwaukee's Best and a Swisher Sweet.

(That last part was made up.)

In any case, he was good all day and then out of nowhere, he decided to get his B on. And his big sister was waaaayyy worse. What have I done to make them think they can act like this? They are snarky, eye-rolling, lip-pursing, little cynics who feel they are entitled to make a running commentary on everything. I am not interested in why the Imagination Movers are awesome and the Wiggles are stupid. I told you to brush your teeth. And don't say stupid.

And the sad, sad truth is that while they are acting like little monsters, they are also acting like their mother. Maybe I don't throw paper products but I have on occasion been known to yell or be slightly short tempered or talk too much or offer up unsolicited feedback on things I know nothing about. But this mommy gig is hard as hell and there are three of them and one of me. And I never get a break. Not even at night. Because I never sleep. Maybe motherhood is just too hard for the likes of me. Cue the Eeyore sigh and muffled, hysterical sobbing...

I suck.

My friends are all like: "You're so hard on yourself! It's not that bad!" But they are wrong. It is that bad. When Hawk was stomping and hurling paper towels, his big sister had already been sent to bed early for intentionally locking me out of the house and then smirking about it. His little, bitty sister was kicking and screaming bloody murder because she was not being allowed to splash in the potty. The potty water was yellow.

Umm. That was really gross, wasn't it? Sorry.

I snapped at the potty incident. I wanted to burst into tears but instead I just screamed:


"I have had it with rotten, disrespectful, naughty children! I have had it! Do you hear me? HAD IT!"


And then I looked at their little, terrified faces. They were clearly worried that "had it" meant something dire and scary. Then all three started crying and saying how sorry they were (except the baby who just kept saying "Momma! Momma!" and wrapping her pudgy arms around my neck). Then I felt worse. At that exact moment, my husband got home.

Welcome home, darling! Here's your Old Fashioned and the evening paper! How was your day? I have been cooking and cleaning in heels, skirt and pointy bra while our perfect children do homework and sing hymns. Wait - what's the opposite of that? Oh yes. Our house. Our family. Welcome to Terrordome.

Do you need more examples of how I suck? Today, the baby ate mulch. Twice. Yesterday, the big kids screamed "I HATE YOU MORE!" at each other. While at church. I watched the Cap'n whisper to them furiously. And then I walked right by as if I had no idea who they were. Perhaps in acknowledgement that maybe the little buggers would be better off if any other (non-felon) woman on earth were their mother.

In case any of you were feeling bad about your abilities as parents, please rest assured that I am much worse. And I have three beautiful monsters that I make more monster-y through my own ineptitude every single day. So, hopefully you feel better after reading this.

You're welcome.

xo, Lydia

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