Thursday, March 19, 2015

When You have a Bad Parenting Day

I started this blog about two weeks back thinking it would just be a reflection of my life as a parent and wife. (Ok… D thinks I did so because I was just bored…)

I did hope I wasn't just writing to myself but I didn't expect people to actually read my blog. But… people do (Thanks for the free kite! Now… if only I can get a car…. :) ) And (almost) everyday, I get messages to tell me that they enjoyed reading the blog and it had inspired them in their day or journey as a mummy. I even got compliments on doing a good job (I feel like it's time to run for Mrs Singapore..)

In case you didn't know which car… BTW, I am not a fan of pineapples… and white will do :D
And while it seemed like I did inspire people (Ha! I know… it's unreal), I am just like any of you too - Clueless (maybe a little better than the parent with 1 child), irritable and just… ordinary

I too had my share of bad days and doubts. I remembered when Audrey was just 1 week old, the confinement nanny had to go to get her passport stamped, and I was alone with her. Well, let's just say I'm glad God made them hardy, because within that short 1.5 hrs with her, not only I couldn't get her to latch on well (who ever said breastfeeding was natural???), I kinda knocked her nose while changing her clothes (It's an accident!) It was a nightmare! 
There was another time when Audrey was a baby, and she just couldn't stop fussing, I wanted to teach her a lesson to stop crying so much. (Like what was i thinking… teach a baby not to cry?!?) I raised my voice at her, in the hope of disciplining her, but in the end, she just got louder and I got irritated and frustrated and I just got the helper to take over while I just cried in the room. (yes… i know… loser)

But as any other mummy (or parent) would tell me, it is normal. And in case you need a reminder, this is for you..

1) Mummy's bad day… is usually just for ONE day.
No matter how terrible that day was for me, after I wake up the next day, chances are it gets better. The next day the kids forget you even scolded them the day before, their eyes light up when they see you and they just drop everything and run to you. (Doesn't that amaze you on their gift of forgiveness?) And that moment just made up for whatever bad day you had yesterday. 
Now, if everyday seems like hell to you, then you are having depression or the blues. This is serious… Talk to someone about it… 

2) Yesterday's failures doesn't mean I've failed.
Is this an egg or not???
Remember the ever famous egg blog when I shared about how I failed my test as a mum? Sure, on hindsight, I have learnt certain things that I could do better - look at her small successes than her minor failures. 
And I have to learn that lesson myself. To look at my other small successes along the way and not just that incident because it doesn't define me as a mum. Like even after a hectic day, I still am able to plan and cook a family dinner (for 9) by 7pm. 
So yes, cheer up, you still got another chance to better yourself. :)

3) Know that you are not alone
The best journeys are the ones travelled
with someone who loves you…. as much
as you love them… 
I'm grateful that whenever I doubt myself, I can turn to my friends and D for support. They may not offer any advice, but just by letting me pour out my frustrations and just let me cry it out, it's enough.
D may not agree with how I cope with my negative emotions at times, but he doesn't judge me. He doesn't agree with how I may choose to show my negative emotions (be it anger or sadness), but he doesn't tell me that I shouldn't feel that way. (I think because of that, he should just get the Husband of the Year award already!) He listens to me rant, doesn't judge me and ends up asking me if I need a drink. (Ha! Don't you love him too?

4) Guidelines should just be a guide
Sure, there are many studies which tell you how certain things you do will make your child develop better etc. When God gave you a child, besides giving you enough love to protect and nurture the kid, He also equipped you with some intelligence and intuition to know what your child is like and how you  can be a better mummy to that kid. So if those guidelines stress you more than help you, ditch them on that bad mummy day… Go with the flow and enjoy your kids.

5) Even if you think you are a bad mummy, your kids don't
I think this is the one that takes the cake. Not every comment I received so far is positive, though with 1 of those I get, I have 8 more that are encouraging. Sometimes I wonder if I had opened my life to criticism when all I wanted to do was to share with people some positive energy on motherhood and I forget that my duty is towards my children and not to the rest of the world. I can't tell you the many times when my kids hugged and kissed me and tell me they think I'm pretty (ha.. they are not joking…), that they love me tops (okay.. sometimes it drops to the 3rd place after daddy and their dolls), or when they perform on stage they look out for D and me and not care whether the rest of the world sees them, and when at night, they choose to snuggle up to me even when during the day I would be disciplining them… 
The list goes on… but nothing can deny that you are your child's superhero… and they are yours. 

So trot on fellow parents… You are not alone, and you are doing just fine. Anyone who tells you otherwise, probably don't have any kids of their own. :) My prayers are specially with you today… :)

Share with me if you have any other times when you feel like your day is terrible, and how something got you going. :) 

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