Chris Jordan wrote another pretty great post over at AlphaMom, Mothering Meltdowns, Keep Them To Yourself. She starts off by talking about not being her children's friend (something that I FULLY support), but then moves into talking about how the trend in the blogosphere is to share 'bad mommy' stories, to only talk about the bad parts of parenting. Guilty. And it's not just on the blog -- the 'it's very hard' talk tends to creep into a lot of my everyday conversations as well. Everyone likes a reminder that they are not the only person not enjoying every special moment with their kids, but I am coming to the realization that a lot of my posts, and the vast majority of what comes out of my mouth, is an account of all my crushing insecurities and neuroses -- that I don't talk a lot about being HAPPY.
"I want to challenge everyone to write something good about mothering. It is tough, we all already know that. But write a poem, a song, a post, a story or even a photograph that tells what is awesome about having kids. If 15 years from now this is the one and only surviving thing that your children get to read about this time in their lives, what you want it to say? What would you want them to know? I know that I would want my children to read my blog as a whole and feel that I delighted in each and every one of them beyond measure, even when things were challenging. That is the legacy I hope to leave them."
* I like the silliness. I don't particularly enjoy being a grown up. I would much rather be riding around, blaring my radio, and acting goofy. I get to do this with Z. She likes dancing and hide and seek and being tickled. This morning, she was slamming her head around in the car seat while I had Joan Jett's 'Hate Myself for Loving You' on at full volume in the family car. It made me laugh pretty hysterically. Nothing is too serious yet.
* I like her bossiness. She wants what she wants when she wants it. This irritates me, but also impresses me. She is all Dada, all the time, but bedtime is MY time. I get the weight of her on me, and we sing songs. I have tried to introduce new ones, but she yells "nooooooooooo," so it's a loop of 3 songs that she has deemed acceptable. Then she grabs her doll and blankie and points at the crib. She always goes down fairly easily, but we will be up, sometimes almost an hour later, and all of a sudden we hear some blathering, followed by a "YAAAAAY!" It's really funny.
* The way kids smell, and their skin and the tiny feet and hands. Walking down the street hand in hand, letting her point out various things.
* She loves my parents. She loves my siblings. She gets her own relationships with all of those people, unfettered by our baggage.
* She is my husband's daughter. I have heard that expression, "father of my child," before, and yes, it's a fact. YG is the father of my children. I never really think about that, but we were on a flight to California recently, and as I was making my way back from the bathroom, looking for my seat, I spotted the back of YG's head and giggled because it is round and distinctive and Z has the exact same one -- shape and everything. I just had this feeling. Sort of an overwhelming sense of happiness and peace that this dude was my kid's father. Relationships take a beating post kids. I am not arguing with that, but I just had this good feeling that I had chosen my other half wisely. Seeing YG with his kids is always a positive for me.
There's more, but I try and reserve those just for her. I write Z a letter each month, and my hope is that someday, after I am done being her "benevolent dictator," she will see me as me and not just as Mom.