1. As progressive, free-thinking, against-the-grain, granola-loving, attachment-parenting, nothing-like-my-mother as I think I am, I realized this week that I gender stereotype. Worst of all, I did this to innocent little children. I thought I was being helpful, purposefully and obviously pointing out the blocks to the little boys that were visiting our house for a playdate. I didn’t do the same for the girls that were visiting. In fact, I’m surprised I didn’t point out the dolls to the girls. Or maybe I did. Only later did I realize what I had said and did. So interesting. And what a great experience to encourage self-reflection and assessment of my parenting skills!
2. The day before you have guests coming over for the first time and you want to make a good impression (and you have about three days worth of cleaning to do in less than 24 hours), do NOT decide to re-pot all of your houseplants in the kitchen sink thinking that the dirt will just wash right down the drain. Uh, 3 hours, 6 giants pots of boiling water, 1 gallon of vinegar, 1 box of baking soda, lots of plunging with the toilet plunger, and an hour of scooping dirt and water out with various sizes of spoons into a bowl to throw off the side of the deck later, the sink was unclogged. And I was still trying to convince my husband that only a tiny bit of dirt had gone down the drain and I had no idea why it plugged up so easily!
3. Logical parenting and gentle admonishment using phrases such as “please be respectful of my decisions” or “I will not respond when you talk to me like that” or “I’m upset and disappointed in your behavior” or “it is NOT OK to act that way in our family” will most definitely be used against you (and often in the correct context) by your 3 year old.
4. Sometimes popcorn and frozen raspberries is just the best I can do for lunch for my kids. High fiber, right? But I still feel like the worst. mother. ever.
5. Sometimes you spend days, weeks, months, even years, anticipating and being anxious about something. Then you finally do it or experience it or succumb to it and you realize, everything turned out just fine. The Universe didn’t strike you dead or laugh at you until it peed its pants. Your friends still like you. Your family still loves you. Your kids still think you’re the greatest person ever (exception: see #3 above). And YOU are still YOU. Anxieties and all. You realize that in waiting for the “right” time or until you think you are “ready,” you’ve wasted so much time and so many opportunities. So just do whatever it is that you’ve been putting off or holding back, OK? You’ll be fine. More than fine. Life will go on. You will go on. All is well.