Thursday, August 22, 2013

Dear: Me As A Mom

Dear Me as a Mom,

It wasn't all that long ago that you were a child and even less time since you were a teenager. You need to remember these things as the baby grows up. 

I love lists. 

1. Kids Remember Injustices
They don't understand the life is not fair argument and telling them this repeatedly is not going to create an understanding. 

Even the most ridiculous instances that an adult wouldn't bat an eye at can cut deep and will be remembered for...possibly ever. 

For example, in grade one my teacher would give out a (large, that's important) gummy treat of your choosing on your birthday. After months of watching my teacher call the birthday boy or girl to the back of the class to participate in a birthday treat, my birthday came. My name wasn't called, my day of birth wasn't acknowledged, my treat was over looked. I was overlooked. I was sad nay, crushed, but I didn't mention it to anyone. 

I didn't really like that teacher, she didn't really like me, I didn't really like the class ( it was a 1/2 split) and while my adult reasoning says it was likely an oversight my child mind says it was a personal slight. 

2. Be On Their Side
It doesn't even have to be against anyone. They will know when you aren't rooting for them and it stings.

 When they don't do as well in swimming lessons one year and have really no idea. Don't tell them they are going to fail the next year if they don't get better. It's not true and it crushes spirits. 

3. Being 6 Is A Blur
While some things are crystal clear, mostly fun things and happy memories, between the ages of 3 and I would say 10, life is generally a blur. 

School I think is the blurriest, the day to day stuff and especially stuff I didn't understand yet. 
Which leads me to...

4. Sometimes Things Haven't Clicked Yet
Kids learn at different paces and I was no different. It can be embarrassing and frustrating. 

In kindergarten we were supposed to write a sentence to go along with our painted picture. I dreaded this assignment the entire time I was painting. I believe my picture was a landscape. I knew how to write my name and probably some words but the whole sentence concept was not there yet. I completed my picture without the sentence portion and braced myself for embarrassment and a scolding. 

Thankfully, embarrassing 5 year olds is not what kindergarten is all about and my teacher, thankfully, was aware of this. I don't remember what or if they asked me any questions about my incomplete assignment. All I remember was that there is no memory of being upset

5. Being A Kid Can Be Confusing
Your logic, as you're explaining it to your mother, is perfectly sound. That should be enough to do what you want, right? Why can't I just do it? 

So you live in Canada but NOT in Ontario? I don't get it. 

Why am I in trouble? This rule is new. My mom doesn't do it that way. Oh I'm still in trouble? (Throw fit)

My name is Tia, why is it Tia? Am I Tia? That was a hilarious one to remember, I was looking in my mirror completely baffled by my own image and my name. 

This time I actually didn't do it, why am I still getting in trouble? 

The list goes on and on. 

6. If I'm Sneaky Enough...
I can surely get away with it. Kids are sneaky and I was no exception.

Like when I was allowed 2 pieces of Halloween candy but I snuck three extra pieces up my sleeve. I was found out almost immediately. The plan was flawed and based on my mother not being as astute as she was. 

7. Throwing A Fit
Might just be feeling more upset and not being able to control my emotions. Emotions and kids are a funny, uncontrollable beast on a good day. Add in difficult situations and a rocky home life and things can get out of control. 

I didn't always know why I was upset or why I was SO upset. It felt real and possibly the end of the world at the time. 

8. Sometimes A Fit
was just a fit. It was intentional and to get my way. I don't know how you're supposed to know the difference as a parent. 

9. Throwing Things Feels Good
It still does. Some parts of being a kid don't you don't fully grow out of. 

I've broken things and immediately calmed down after because I felt stupid and regretted it. 

There has to be a line drawn, of course, destroying EVERYTHING  and things that aren't yours are not ok. But they are just things. 

10. Yelling Made Me Feel
Overwhelmed, upset and confused. It still does. A barrage of accusations or scolding without time for me to process or respond makes my head spin. 
My response: crying. 

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