The Good (a sanctimonious post)

Sometimes it is hard to get inspired for blog posts. When those times come I normally end up getting frustrated about something and coming here to release it into the universe. It’s great to let it go but is not always a clear picture of my life.

I come here today to tell you about the good. You know what? There is so much good.

A few years ago a friend told me that she would list her toddler as her best friend if people wouldn’t think she weird. I get it. I truly enjoy my child. He is fun and creative and has started getting more into imaginary things (like talking to and showing us imaginary worms). He’s caring and loving and sure, he’s not perfect but he’s pretty great.

This is one of the reasons I have struggles connecting with other moms. In mom groups big and small, locally and nationally, I see so many moms frustrated with their kids. I see a lot of name calling and “why is your kid crying” threads and stuff that I just can’t really get down with. I know kids are frustrating and I know that moms need a place to let off steam. I know that they love their kids. But I really don’t have much to add to those conversations.

The other common theme is partner bashing. A dear friend told me years ago that she stopped talking about her frustrations with her partner with other people. I thought that was a bit extreme but I get it. When I have semi publicly expressed frustrations with Lesley in the past people will pile on and validate my feelings. And you know what? Those feelings are valid. But when I get internet folks to validate them it just fuels my fire instead of discussing them with her. My take away from “mom groups” is that I am extremely fortunate. I have an equal partnership with someone I love is who an amazing and engaged parent of our child. Day to day there will always be little things but the big picture is good.

I feel so content with where we are. I’d have a 2.5 year old forever. I feel like the classes we took when Gus was an infant, was one, and a few months ago really shaped who we are as parents. My expectations are realistic and I have some coping mechanisms to deal. Everything isn’t perfect 100% of the time but I never feel the need to call my kid an asshole either so there’s that.

I asked a friend a while ago if she felt awkward about how much she loves her daughter. She 100% understood what I meant. So much of mom bonding is around complaining that I just don’t know how to operate in that world. It’s why I don’t attend “Mom’s Night Out” events. I appreciate the purpose of complaining and know that everyone needs some solidarity – I 100% get it and don’t begrudge how people live their lives (even though this sounds so sanctimonious) I just realized I was happier when I stopped venting my frustrations to the world wide web.

There are moments of every day that are trying. There are moments of every day I wish I could do over. There are moments of every day when I am at the end of my rope. But the days are amazing. When I look at the big picture I give most a 9/10.

I think we have a balance that is often hard but childcare is a savior for me. I think he learns a lot, we learn a lot, and we have some space. I used to think of childcare as something we needed but now think that we are fortunate to have it. That’s not saying every kid/family needs it but it contributes a lot to the well being of my family.

I read through this post and thought about deleting it because I don’t want people to think I am a jerk who judges their feelings (I see so many of you in various mom corners). I’m not though – I’m leaving it because the conversation I had with my friend about the awkwardness of internet parenting. I’m leaving it to let you all know it’s okay to think you are totally rocking this thing. So here are kid pictures to end it:

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Posted on May 1, 2017, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 13 Comments.

  1. I think this is really beautiful and well-said. It’s okay to love your kid and think they are great people and enjoy your spouse and like your home life and be proud of the child you are raising and happy of the life you lead. I think we should all say it more often.

    • I feel like sometimes we live in extremes. I want mom’s to feel okay to be frustrated and struggling. But now it seems to be the dominate narrative I see – It’s okay to not feel that way, too.

  2. shawnsorcade

    Ev sees crabs and worms everywhere. Also snakes because she knows I don’t like them and will constantly tell me there’s a snake about to get me.

    • hahahaha, that tricky Ev. We were in the car this weekend and Gus would randomly hold his hand out and go “Oh hi little wormy!”. He is often comforting them — “Don’t be sad, wormy” “It’s okay, wormy”. There was an elaborate story about a worm being afraid of an alligator but Gus explained it was a friendly alligator.

  3. I’m with you, I don’t feel like I have all that much to complain about. My kids are awesome and more fun every day, my wife and I are a great team, I love my job, my dogs are super cute. What’s not to love really?

    • I mean I can always find something to complain about but I’m good with sticking to worthless coworkers and the weather.

      • Haha, yes, there’s always something to complain about, all the daily grind irritations. I think you’re right when you talk about expectations. Of course my 3 year olds are emotionally unstable and sassy, all of them are. Of course my 2 year old hits everyone in sight and throws a fit when he doesn’t get his way, all of them do. All of that is super frustrating and annoying, but not the main things I want to talk about in public.

      • And it’s not that they are bad kids. They are 2 and 3! They don’t have the self control and emotional capacity to do anything different.

  4. I hear you on all of this. I felt so much negativity in online mom groups. I agree that it can serve a purpose but can also backfire. Also, 2 1/2 was way better than this first month and change of 4 has been. I am in a hard spot myself and he is really into pushing my buttons and contradicting everything (like putting all his weight on the dishwasher won’t break the door because it’s the opposite of what I just said). I want my 9/10 days back and know they will be if I can keep on. I tend to hold back on venting because I’m afraid to get the “well, you chose to do this on your own” rebuttals.

  5. YES!!! The best part? It just keeps getting better. I thought one year was amazing, and then came two years and it blew my mind. Three was not for the weak – but STILL managed to improve upon two. And four? Just forget it. It’s been the greatest year yet, without a doubt.

    I could never have imagined how deeply I would love these kids and our family and parenting with my wife, and how much I would truly enjoy hanging out with all of them or one-on-one, listening to their stories, making each other laugh. They are fucking incredible. Sure, if we didn’t have kids, we’d have enough discretionary income to travel a different part of the world every year. That would be fun – it would be unbelievable. Even so, none of it would hold a candle to this. I know I fail in a million ways every day, that’s just the nature of the beast – but we are rocking this hard.

  6. I love this perspective. I recently drafted a post that vented about some differences I’m experiencing with my wife, and I knew that if I hit post I’d get the validation I’m looking for, but my wife would also get piled on in a one sided argument. I deleted it. I also try to focus on the positive, and with my daughter, there really isn’t anything BUT positive anymore. The first few months were hard and I really needed to vent, but now I’m more in a similar place to where you are. It’s so great. Babies and Kids are so great.

  7. Good is good. Although I have to quibble with your dislike of the “why is my toddler crying?” game. I find it hilarious. I mean, come on. A five minute meltdown because her sister flushed her poop down the toilet? What’s not to love about that?!

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