I cleared a patch of cat hair on the couch for her, and grabbed some wine glasses I prayed weren’t covered in Yo Baby. Then she watched with amused bewilderment as my two year-old dunked her fist in my wine glass and licked it (possibly several times before I caught her), my four year-old ate bread for dinner, I threw on Diego around 8 PM just to get them to stop jumping around like hyperactive chickens, and they both pretty much both refused to sleep until GothehelltobedalreadybeforeIkillyou o’thirty.
“I guess I’m not just the Type B mom I play on my blog,” I shrugged, assuming she couldn’t wait to run back to her boyfriend and say WHAT the heck is going on in that household?
I have come to this realization that all these years later it’s not the parenting I still struggle with, so much as the parenting in front of people.
Here in the blog world, we can share only the stories we choose, draw them in such a way to elicit the requisite sympathy or laughs, then end the chapter. It’s kind of a cheat if you think about it: The rawness and authenticity can give the impression that we’re telling all, just because we tell it truthfully. You don’t actually see us do all the so-called bad mommy things we talk about, like letting them watch Noggin for three straight hours, or taking the kids out on a hot June day without hats or sunscreen. Again.
I know in my heart I have awesome kids to show for the decisions Nate and I have made. Even the questionable ones. When Thalia asks Sage which placemat she wants before choosing her own; when Sage accidentally breaks Thalia’s beaded necklace and hugs her in apology without being prompted; when they hold hands to walk down the street, I know we’re doing something very very right.
But somewhere in me, there’s still this annoying, raging insecurity (go away, insecurity! Haven’t I warned you?) that demands that people recognize me for doing okay. Particularly in a neighborhood where the other moms start their kids on violin prenatally, can afford housekeepers to get rid of the pet hair, and never seem to feed anyone bread for dinner.