Thursday, July 3, 2014

A truly sh*tty situation

Let me start off by saying this may be TMI. You've been warned. 

My 3-yr old has been potty trained for a few months now (hooray!) but has gotten into a bad cycle of holding his poop. The longer he holds it, the harder it gets, the more painful it is to go, and the more he avoids going the next time. 

I was discussing the situation with my friend Liz and we realized parenting is truly a shitty situation. At various points in raising children, you are faces with one or more of the following circumstances:

Take a shit
Generally, this happens while you endure the seemingly never ending task of potty training. Getting them to pee isn't necessarily simple, but compared to getting them to poop it's easy. 

Give a shit
This is a life-long situation. When they're little, you teach them to give a shit about others and not be so self-focused. As they get older, you add giving a shit about themselves -- hygiene, doing well in school, sticking with a sport, etc. 

Not to be a shit
Again, a life-long lesson. Making your child grateful and polite can be a huge challenge in our "on demand" lives. Luckily (or unluckily depending how you look at) my kids are better for other people than for me so I get most of the little shit moments. They aren't fun, but better in our home than in public. Although, let's be honest, those moments happen too. 

Liz and I agreed this is an info graphic waiting to happen so if you're crafty, go for it! Hope your day is shit-less :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

I think I'm finally getting it

Anna: I don't even know what love is.
Olaf the Snowman: That's okay. I do. Love is putting someone else's needs before yours.

             - Frozen

Just about six years into this adventure we call parenting, I think I'm finally getting it. I've long understood the quote above, although it's not always the easiest to follow. Who among us wouldn't rather sleep an extra 30 minutes rather than get up to watch cartoons at 6:30 on a Saturday even though it means missing those 30 minutes with our littles? (I'm sure there are some of you out there, but I really think you're in the minority...)

I had a bit of a revelation over the past week taking a BuzzFeed quizz about what kind of parent I am and was a bit shocked with the answer. The General. Strict and controlling. I couldn't have been more surprised. Not that these quizzes are the true definition of anyone, but still. Is that really me? Am I more worried about schedule and rules than I am having fun with my kids?

That's when it hit me. I want my kids' memories of me to be good ones. Not the mom that loses her crap on a daily basis over them bickering, or the one that is too busy washing dishes to sit down and color. I want to be the one that says yes more than no, even if it means making the millionth rainbow loom bracelet this week and for their memories to be full of my face lit in sunlight, not the glow of my iPhone. My own memories of my childhood are full of loving moments, shared secrets, and the one time I actually got spanked with a Girl Scout manual (I totally deserved it).  As much as I hate to think it, tomorrow is not promised. I wonder if someone was to extract my kids memories of me what they would find.

I'm sure I won't be perfect on this endeavor, and there will still be rules and expectations. But the next time someone asks for a drink and I've just sat down on the couch, I'll say "Sure, what would you like?" rather than "But I just sat down." 
And so, with that, I'm off to enjoy rather than dread a snow day with my kids. It's time to make memories.