Sunday, July 27, 2014

"You're Going to Make Mommy Lose Her Shit"

"You're going to make mommy lose her shit." These are the exact words I spoke to my three children today as they fought, screamed, and whined their way through our weekend. Seriously, no matter how patient I was with them, no matter what I did to resolve fights, there was something left for them to fuss about. I typically do a pretty good job of keeping it cool during stressful toddler/preschool/elementary age freak outs, but c'mon. When my two year old asks me to put her shoe back on for the hundredth time only to promptly sit down, take the shoe off, and then cry because it's off, while my four year talks in a baby voice and won't take his hand off of his privates (even in public), and my six year old informs us we're not doing what he wants to do. I tolerated all of it for about an hour of it before I lost my shit.

I've lost my shit with my kids plenty of times. Don't be shy mommies. I know you have too. I've seen you in the grocery store. At the park. Standing in the check out lanes. During play dates. Taking a walk around the neighborhood. I want you to know it's okay. All mommies need to lose their shit sometimes. I like to think it shows our kids that we're not perfect, they're not perfect, and most importantly, it shows that they shouldn't push our buttons anymore.

I'll never forget the first time I lost my shit with one of my kids. Naturally, it was with my oldest son. He had just turned two, our middle son was just born, and I was very sleep deprived (our middle child still to this day does not enjoy sleeping as much as the rest of our family). My husband had brought me my favorite iced coffee from Starbucks in the middle of the day. I was in the middle of a feeding and set my drink on the coffee table. My then two year asked for a drink and I told him no. I sooo didn't need to deal with a caffeinated two year old on top of a newborn.

My oldest son has always been good about listening and doing as he was told, but on this particular day he didn't feel like listening. He picked up my Starbucks drink, drank half of it, and dropped it onto the floor spilling the other half of it. I lost it, crying in my hormonal state, and raised my voice "Maxwell! I told you not to touch that!" I sobbed. I called my husband and sobbed to him the iced coffee story, as I now call it. It wasn't the fact that my two year old, for one of the first times in his life, disobeyed me. It was the fact that I needed that caffeine! Once I calmed down, I sat with my two year old and my non-napping infant and told Max "you shouldn't have touched mommy's coffee. That was mommy's, not yours. I'm very disappointed." My oldest son is now six and still to this day, is very reluctant to touch any drinks I may get from Starbucks!

Many mom's may think this makes me a horrible mom. I lost my shit with my two year old instead of keeping calm, walking away, biting my tongue, etc. Well, sometimes mom's lose their shit, even over spilled coffee. Or over constant pushing or talking in a baby voice all while trying to have a family fun day. Sometimes I need to lose my shit to remind my kids not to push my buttons anymore (or as far as they had this weekend). Sometimes it's good for kids to see a parent upset or angry, even at them. They need to see parents expressing different emotions. More importantly it's good for kids to see how parents handle the situation after losing their shit.

Apologies are always in order (from both the offending child(ren) and the shitless parent(s)). Along with a reminder of not to keep pushing my buttons. Because I will lose my shit. For real, I will.