Laughing at Your Mistakes Makes Motherhood Much More Enjoyable
Parenting is not always pretty, but knowing that I can laugh about it makes my job much more fun.
Being a parent, I have realized that one thing I am really good at is laughing at my mistakes, because really, if I didn’t laugh I would just be a horrible, sobbing mess hiding in the corner of my closet and nobody needs that.
One of my better, laughable "parenting" moments came this week when I was trying to get my two boys ready for camp. As many parents know, trying to get your kids ready to go anywhere in the morning is just not the best part of the day.
Recently, it’s become my habit to bark orders at my kids to get dressed, brush your teeth and pack your bags. Distracted by emails or other things, I will admit my mind isn’t completely on the tasks at hand, so I am putting a lot of faith in my kids to follow the directions I am yelling at them from the other room.
So, last week, as I walk into the kitchen while my two sons are packing their lunches, I actually decide to check out what they are taking every day to eat.
And that is when I found out why little boys have moms. Three packages of Oreo cookies and a Capri Sun was what my children decided would be an appropriate lunch.
“What were you thinking?” I shouted in the crazy-mom voice.
Well, obviously they were thinking we're unsupervised kids left with the task of deciding what we want to eat today. Hmm... what to do, what to do?
Still shouting at my kids like this is their fault (see, I do recognize my craziness at least), I just start shoveling fruit into the lunchboxes. And we’re talking like multiple apples, oranges and bananas, as if that would make up for days of just cookies.
Now, here’s the kicker.
As I shared this story with a friend of mine later and I heard myself relaying the episode out loud, I realized that what I was most upset about wasn’t so much that my kids had been on a sugar high for days but how my kids lunch reflected on me as a mother.
I instantly pictured my two angels sitting at a table full of other kids pulling out package after package of Oreo cookies. Of course the other campers were probably jealous, but the counselors had to be thinking I was the worst mom ever.
And that just made us laugh harder.
Being able to laugh and share that moment with another mother who understood what I was feeling reaffirmed my belief that you can enjoy motherhood, even if you're not perfect at it.
And yeah, since there is no way to really defend myself against a lunch full of sugar, I might as well own it, then laugh about it and move on to my next mistake.