“Am I wrong? I’m pretty sure I’m wrong.” That is probably my most frequent thought. I’m always told to have faith, have faith in the fact that my kids will grow up and be all right even if I didn’t feed them organic greens every day.
I think as a parent it is your job to think you’ve always done something wrong. You may even feel bitter defeat and that you’ve done it all wrong. Especially when everything seems to go to hell in a hand basket in the 20 minutes after feeding dinner to the littles. There are so many moments as a parent, you realize that maybe your kid might not turn out to be the brightest, most creative, or social individual but not because of who they are but because you fear it might have been something YOU did on one day in the beginning of their precious life. Do you over shadow those moments with good things or tell yourself “it will build character” or “hope I didn’t create a monster”?
I think we all just silently nodded in agreement that being a parent is just a HUGE guessing game and I’m not sure if any of us are winning.
Every day is a constant struggle to make sure that my kids don’t climb on the kitchen table and fall off, inevitably hurting their precious heads and little, tiny, soft spots. I look at them and think, “please get down safely” as I scream, “Get down… sit down”, “Sit on your bum bum”, “Why won’t you get down”.
Why don’t they get down? Don’t they know they are inches away from really hurting themselves?
The answer is, No. No, they absolutely do not.
Everything is trial and error and they are learning. And I hope that hearing me say “get down”, repeatedly going over and picking them up and put them back on the floor will eventually teach them that it isn’t safe to stand on the kitchen table. But then it hits again, I fear that I increased their chances of developing a fear of heights, scarring them for the rest of their life and making it hard for them to go to the top of the Empire State building without screaming bloody murder and feeling like they are going to die. Increasing my own fears of failure as a mom. Yep, there it is… failure…
As a parent, I am always hoping to instill a sense of hope, wonder, and freedom within my kids. I want my kids to see that they can do anything and be anything; to not let fear chase them away from their dreams. But then at the same time, fear is healthy. And as humans, it is important that we have fear because it keeps us safe. Our ancestors feared deep dark woods because it was dark and creepy and dangerous animals lived in there… and that kept them from getting eaten. So fear can be important!
Like most parents, there are days when my kids don’t want to eat, and you try to get them to eat anything.
Anything!!… even a cracker.
“You can’t live on air kid!” “Stop eating things off the floor!”
And you find yourself asking:
Cupcakes are a food for dinner right? Is this the third night with chicken nuggets? Can my kid live on a cup of milk alone?
And there it creeps up again… failure.
I don’t want my kids to not eat, so I’ll feed them anything to help them have something in their bellies. Now some days we can go through a container of blueberries, or eat quinoa and peppers for dinner and they are super happy and satisfied. But other nights I struggle to get them to eat one chicken nugget, even though they chose that for dinner!
You hope and you pray that your kid won’t have issues as they get older from malnutrition. Or that they will not have issues in regards to healthy food behaviors.
And that failure train creeps back on up… (toot toot).
Constant fears of failure is a badge I feel all parents wear. Along with the badges for “best worrier”. I know that my years are just starting on the different things that I will feel inadequate with. Teenage years, I hear are the worst!
But I guess the knowledge of knowing that I am not alone in these feelings and that my tribe of other parents help me to know that it’ll all be ok.
Our parents probably had the same feelings and we are ok,