Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Mom! Mom! Mom! Mom! Mom!

The question is always there.  If complete strangers aren't voicing it, then it is in my own mind.

How can you possibly give each of the six children the attention, love, support, encouragement, discipline, and time that each deserves?

There are days when I am one "Mom!" away from a meltdown.

You know, something like this...multiplied by ten times a day...multiplied by six kids.




Thank you, Angela, for leading me to that video!

There are moments when I let the voices of doubt wiggle their way in and leave me completely unable to do anything but just get through.  Thought leaves my head and pure emotion takes over.  I get angry at the slightest things, but I don't stop to correct my mood.  I don't have time.  Before I can deal with the thing that set me off, something else has happened to tear me into another direction.

Usually, I can take things as they come and laugh about it.  Sometimes, though, every once in a great while, I'm just not in the mood to be a good mom.

I started to get into that bad mood bad mom funk a few weeks ago.   Lots of things have been going on, one fire after another that needs putting out.  I swear, if one more person in my family breaks something, I am never letting another one of them play a sport again.  (The tally since January 8 is now Hubby-broken foot, Giant-broken nose, Buttercup-broken finger, and Giant came home with a swollen and black and blue big toe after soccer on Sunday.  We're keeping an eye on it.)  Other things have been gong on that I just can't talk about, as it's not all about me.  (You know if it was just me, it would be all over this blog in a hot second.)

Fortunately, I recognized the funk and had a three-day weekend to get those sour-puss voices of doubt out of my head.

In three short days, I

1.  Nursed a sick Star.  (Who is still sick and didn't go to school today.)
2.  With Buttercup's help, got pounds and pounds and pounds of food cooked, bagged, and frozen for later use. 
3.  Played (and lost) lots of games of Scrabble and Rummy with Phoenix and Giant.
4.  Went on a dinner date with Hubby.  (We went to a new place, and holy deliciousness.  I now think about the duck spring rolls every time I drive by the place.)
5.  Went to Bloomington with Buttercup for a soccer practice/scrimmage in a huge, indoor IU facility.
6.  Got 2 kids' eyes checked.  (All good, for now.)
7.  Played many rounds of The Sneaky Squirrel Game with the little boys.
8.  Got Buttercup in for the haircut she's been dreaming of.
9.  Went to Mass with the non-sick members of the family and got to actually pay attention and get some extra, much needed prayer time.  (Hubby had the start of a migraine, so he stayed home with Star and Cuckoo.)
10.  Went on a date with Phoenix to the antique mall.  He's been wanting to go for a while, but there is no way I'm going with all six kids.  We finally had a chance last night, so the two of us spent over two hours taking our time and perusing the entire place.  We then went out for a pleasant dinner, where I didn't one time embarrass him by bringing up the subject of girls.
11.  Got lots and lots of hugs and cuddles from all the kids.

I was able to kick the voices to the curb and get back on track.  It's a good feeling.

And it's a feeling I can only have because I am not raising these children on my own. 

While I was cooking, Hubby was playing plenty of games with the boys.

While I was in Bloomington, Hubby did a mess of laundry.  (So much laundry that I didn't even get upset when he washed and dried my favorite, dry-clean only pants.)

While I was at the mall with Phoenix, Hubby made dinner and got the other kids to bed.

While he was home, Hubby kept the "Mom!" cries to a minimum.

To answer the question, I can't.  I can't give them all the attention, love, support, encouragement, discipline, and time that they need. 

I'm not supposed to.

When those doubts start creeping in, when I start to feel like I'm failing, I need to step back and name my problem.

My problem isn't too many needy children.

My problem isn't my inabilities and inadequacies.

My problem is my inflated ego, thinking that I am the only one influencing these children's lives.

My children are who they are, not just because of me, but because they have a wonderful father here on earth and a God in heaven who guides them and loves them better than I ever could.

Darn good thing.

Now, if only I could teach them to say, "Dad!" a little more often.

14 comments:

  1. :) You have a very lovely 6 of them!!

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  2. Sometimes you just have to say, "it's good enough" and be done with it. My friend gave me that advice years ago, and once I stopped trying to be everything to everybody I started feeling much better.

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  3. A big thumbs up to your husband - a little peace of mind that things are being taken care of at home when you are out can go a long way.

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    1. A very long way. He may not do things the way I do, but that is OK. (It has taken me a while to realize that.)

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  4. I recently asked my husband WHY they keep calling me... why don't they call his name and repeat it until they are blue on the face. He looked at me with the greatest patience and tolerance and said something to the effect of: "You must be well loved and doing something right. They look to you, trust you, want to be near you... sounds like a pretty good gig to me." Still...seems like he should have more turns. :)

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    1. A good gig, for sure. but why, oh why, do they leave a room they are sharing with their father to scream "Mom, can I have a snack?"

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  5. I recently asked my husband WHY they keep calling me... why don't they call his name and repeat it until they are blue on the face. He looked at me with the greatest patience and tolerance and said something to the effect of: "You must be well loved and doing something right. They look to you, trust you, want to be near you... sounds like a pretty good gig to me." Still...seems like he should have more turns. :)

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  6. Well isn't that a great way to start my day? Seeing my name in your post put a huge smile on my face!

    I think you do an awesome job with your 6. I feel the same way as you do many days...and I only have 4!

    Fantastic post.

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    1. It was a funny video that needed to be shared. :)
      Thank you. We all feel that way sometimes, I have to believe.

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  7. Try 3 (stupid computer!)
    I'm sorry your heart is heavy!
    I get so frustrated when I realize my worry is taking away family happy. Hope things take a turn for the better for you!
    Glad you were able to have a YUM~O date with Hubs, and spend some time with some of the kids! That is such a treat!
    In keeping it real, you are a comfort to the other moms out there "having one of those days"
    j

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  8. I feel like there is something in the air this time of year. I've been feeling the same way! Pulling up my big girl panties and carrying on is becoming a daily chore, and it sucks. I'm ready for sunshine and longer days, that always makes it feel better.

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  9. I could not even listen to 30 seconds of that cartoon! At least the voices of kiddies you know and love aren't *quite* so irritating.

    Your Hubby gets at least 10zillion awesome points for doing laundry. That's been my bugbear this week - I was away and had asked mine to do some and came back to find the washing not done, the dry clothes still hung up and him claiming not to remember the conversation *sigh*

    And no, you're not meant to do it on your own - you two (three?) sound like a great team.

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Thank you for taking the time to tell me what you're thinking!