Being my own cheering section

I think I’m not alone in this, but so often I wonder if I’m doing an ok job with my kids. I guess by the mere fact that it’s a constant concern for me is a good sign. I’m always being critical of myself, always trying to do better… of course the flip side to this is that I’m always being critical of myself… meaning I rarely feel like I’ve succeeded. That’s probably just part of the job of being a parent – you don’t see the final result of your work until you see what kind of adults your kids end up being. And even then it’s not really a final result – because I know I’ve continued to learn and grow even as an adult. But at that point, your work is kind of done. You can’t go back in time and fix mistakes. Not that you’re supposed to be a perfect parent. In fact, I think if your kids see you make some mistakes, it’s not such a bad thing. The lesson you get to teach when you make a mistake is how to deal with it: Tell the truth. Correct the problem. Apologize. Do better next time. Etc.

Anyway, that was a tangent. I felt like I had a success and before I started my regular cycle of parenting-doubt, I wanted to make a note of it. My daughter had her first “real” sleepover last night. (Meaning that it was a friend sleeping over and not just a cousin) I’m not a very good cook, and dinners around here, especially during the week can be kind of scattered – so I was trying to come up with something that would be fun. My plan: make your own pizzas. I got some Boboli pizza crusts, cheese, sauce, and a variety of toppings: sliced olives, pre-cooked chicken, pre-cooked sausage, sliced peppers, pepperoni (I had offered mushrooms too, my favorite, but they were vociferously rejected) and I let the girls invent their own combination. It didn’t take long for them to make the pizzas, but they still had fun doing it. Even Zach got into the act, although for his, I made his pizza and he directed what to put on it (olives and sausage and pepperoni for the kid that usually eats nothing but mac and cheese!!! AMAZING!)

Then later in the evening, despite my fears of a catastrophic mess, we opened up the “Make Your Own Bubble Gum Flavor” kit Rachel got for her birthday from one of her uncles. It was a little messy (especially when you broke out the food coloring) but not nearly as bad as I was expecting. And the kids had an absolute blast doing it. They each made two different types of gum. Her friend even thanked me for letting them do the project saying it was so much fun.

Score 1 point for not-so-perfect-mom!!! 😀

3 Comments

  1. Jen K
    Aug 25, 2009

    I think every decent parent wonders if they are doing as well as they should. It’s natural and healthy.

    You were brave with the bubble gum kit. We’ve had a mini sewing machine sitting around since Christmas that I haven’t been brave enough to let the girls try out. With projects? I am a total chicken.

  2. Jennifer
    Aug 25, 2009

    JEN!!!! I missed you!!! How are you?!

  3. Margie
    Aug 27, 2009

    I feel like I can speak with a little authority on this subject for two reasons: first, my kids were essentially raised by wolves, and second, they’re grown and both came out OK. The best advice I can give is to just be tuned into your kids and listen to them. If the appear to be well-adjusted and happy, they probably are.

    I give you many stars for attempting the bubble gum – that took courage!!

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