Lucky for me, my kids have zero interest in reading my blog so I believe I am safe in writing about some parenting failures I am willing to admit to. It’s not as if they would be surprised, were they to stumble upon this post. They are the ones that remind me of these failures all the time. Why do they always remember the bad times? What about the thousands of parenting successes?
Here are the 10 fails I would like to share:
1. Dropping my infant in the front yard –
In my defense, I tripped over the front step while holding her and heading outside. If anyone had been filming me in slow motion mode, they would have seen my eyes bugging out of their sockets, my eyebrows raising up to my cranium, my mouth slowly opening while yelling, AHHHHHHHHHH, my arms flapping as I desperately tried to hold on to her and my legs twisting in some warped yoga-like pose as we hit the ground. I.dropped.my.baby.
As it turned out, I cushioned her fall so much so that the EMTs could not find a scratch on her, whereas I ended up with a broken leg and having to attend her baptism the next day, on crutches.
2. Forgetting about the tooth fairy –
I know I am not alone with this parental fail, except that it happened all the time! Over and over again. That lazy fairy always arrived at least two days late and I just kept making up excuses for her. That she was blind and couldn’t find our house. That she had been kidnapped by a very very bad man. That one of her wings had fallen off…
3. Leaving the two kids in the car –
I swear, it wasn’t a bad thing to do back then. I would ask them if they wanted to go in to the store with me to grab milk or something we needed and when they said no, I allowed them to stay in the car together. They would play games and have a good ‘ol time (at least that’s what they told me later). It was usually a quick errand and I’d be back in the car in no time. Never in 90 degree weather or during a frost. Does that count for anything?
4. Miscounting the Christmas gifts and having more for one child –
I thought I was so organized. I had lists upon lists with all the items I had bought for the kids numbered and separated. I even used different wrapping paper for each child. I checked and double checked the night before to make sure I had equal amounts for both. Yet there we were on many a’ Christmas mornings, listening to one of the kids cry because Santa had brought the other one more gifts. They are 21 and 19 now and I still miscount.
5. Taking the whole stranger-danger lesson too far –
In my honest attempt at preparing them for what to do and say when approached by a stranger, I scared the shit out of them and traumatized them for life. Okay, so I would sit them down at the dinner table and go through scenarios and they had to tell me how they would handle that particular situation. I thought it was a brilliant idea! After having to calm them down night after night as they awoke terrified from their nightmares, I decided to stop these lessons altogether.
6. Giving the kids food that had already expired –
I have since learned that those expiration dates don’t really mean anything, anyway. You can add at least another week or two to those dates, you know. However, my oldest started reading at a very early age and his little boy OCD would make him check the dates on everything before eating it. He soon began to doubt my intentions and stopped trusting me. To this day, he checks expiration dates and smells everything I serve him to make sure it’s still good.
7. Cheering for the wrong swimmer during a swim meet –
They all look alike when they are in the pool, for crying out loud! Same bathing suit, same color swim caps. So during an important swimming event my daughter was swimming, I got my phone camera all set up to begin taping her. The starting bell went off, all the girls dove into the pool and I was that crazy-like dance mom who cheers obnoxiously, screams, jumps up and down and records every second of the event. Once home, I couldn’t wait to show her the recording of her amazing swim. That’s when she very loudly informed me that the girl I had recorded was not her.
8. Getting caught throwing their art work away –
I did keep most of their art work and colorful crooked ceramic vases, but every once in a while I felt a need to simplify and make room for new art. The problem was that we were and still are die-hard recyclers, so when I sent them out to the garage to play one Saturday morning, I had forgotten that the recycling bin was filled to the rim with…art. Yea. Many tears were shed.
9. Acting like a junkie while holding a syringe and telling my kids to shut the f up –
My kids have grown up watching me take all kinds of medications for my Rheumatoid Arthritis, since they were very little. On this particular morning, I was attempting to inject a new medication into my stomach for the very first time. The kids were watching cartoons and arguing. The arguing soon became full-fledged fighting with some hitting involved. As I tried to steady the needle and aim it into my stomach, the fighting escalated. As any other
crazy mother would have done under these tense circumstances, I held the syringe up in the air and yelled, “Shut the F@*%^ up!!!!!!” It’s Mother of the Year material, isn’t it? I’ve had prouder moments.
10. Letting my daughter drive home after getting her permit –
I thought I would be one of those cool and confident parents that tells her daughter that she can drive home (a 40 minute drive including highway) after having received her learner’s permit. If I showed her how confident I was in her ability to take the wheel, she would take that confidence on and successfully drive home. After almost hitting several pedestrians, white-knuckling the steering wheel while driving 10 miles per hour on the highway and miraculously not getting us both killed at a dangerous intersection, my little trouper got us home. Mind you, she was crying hysterically when she got out of the car and would not drive again for another month.
*Oh yea, and I never took them to Disney World or got them a puppy! Sigh
Do you have any parental fails to share?