Friday, December 13, 2013
When you feel like a crap mom
Last night I felt like a crap mom. T was fighting with L and I was sick of it, so I didn't do anything about it. I just kept cooking dinner and told them to work it out. Well, they worked it out all right. Someone got hit, someone got yelled at and sent to their room and I ended up crying over the whole thing and wishing I had handled the situation differently. It's like that a lot with my first one. I didn't know how to be a mom when he was born. I was totally clueless. Throw in postpartum depression for the first 6 weeks of his life and I was a mess. He was fed and clothed but I don't know if he was loved like he should have been. It took me a while to learn to love him. It wasn't instant like people told me it would be. He was a stranger and I had to get to know him and get used to him and learn to like him. It's been a rocky relationship with us. There have been times when he was my whole world and my favorite thing was to just sit and hold him. As he got older I loved teaching him and reading to him and just being with him. But when more kids came along and more problems and issues I had more bad mom days than good. And now he's almost 11 and sometimes the last thing he wants is to hang out with his mom. I mess up a lot with him. I say or do the wrong things and then I have to make up for it later with an apology and an explanation that I've never had a ten year old son before, so I don't always know what to do. There are times when more than anything I want to go back in time and start over with him because now I know what I am supposed to do. If I could do it again I would be a better mom to him. I feel like he's my experiment and I feel bad about that. I wish he wasn't. I wish I had been given a practice child before him, one that wasn't real and I couldn't hurt, but I could learn from. But then I look at him and I know why he was born first. He is stronger than the other two and there are things I needed to learn from him before they came along. I was thinking about this last night and so I wrote him a letter. I told T how alike we are, how when I was in elementary school I also got teased because I wasn't good at throwing or kicking or catching a ball. I told him how I also liked to come home after school and go to my room and close the door and sit and read and not be bothered. How I started ballet lessons at the age of 10 just like he started karate this year. And then I told him what I see when I look at him. That despite his challenges with ADD and friends and self esteem that I look at him and see someone who is strong, faithful, brave, obedient and a protector of little brothers. I told him that his brothers look up to him and to them he is a hero. I told him that when I look in his eyes I see something so special and that I know that some day he will do great things. I left the letter in his room where he would see it this morning. And he did. When I came in this morning he said, "I read your note. Thanks Mom." He gave me a hug and I realized that even though I mess up and make mistakes there are times when I do just the right thing. And now I see that he's mine for a reason and that I am the mom he needed to become who he is going to be.