You are not the only one. We all feel like we could have handled something better sometimes. We yell at our children when we are mad at our husbands or we are impatient when our two-year-old wants to walk everywhere - but usually in the wrong direction. When my guys were little, pretty much anytime between 4 and 7 pm, you might find a tired and grouchy mom. How can it be that those three hours can seem like 24?! There is a reason some call it the “arsenic hour.”
I was talking to some friends recently and one mentioned that today’s mothers would not think of taking their baby out of their carseat while someone was driving. They also seem pretty strict about kids sitting in the backseat until the proper age and weight. I applaud them. I actually think young women are better Moms than my generation in a lot of ways. They seem to insist on healthy food (we were regulars on the Happy Meal train), they consider everything, like vaccinations, much more carefully than we did. I shouldn’t speak for everyone but I think I was pretty loose. So, in this group discussion I confessed, I had even nursed one of my babies while I was driving! Scares me now to think of that. But I guess it seemed to make sense at the time …or I was desperate!
Crazy things just happen sometimes. My friend, Ann, told me the following story about her daughter
Cassie. When Cassie was about 2, she had a terrible time with ear infections. I can relate – we had “pink medicine” in our fridge for a solid 5 years. Possibly worse than the pain, Cassie would projectile vomit from the discomfort. One day Cassie was safely strapped into her carseat behind her Mom and they were traveling down Monument Avenue in Richmond, Virginia. This is the fanciest street in town and true to its name, every couple of blocks there is a monument in the middle of the street with a grassy area surrounding it. Out of the blue, little Cassie says, “Mommy, I don’t feel good.” Before Ann has time to react, you guessed it – Cassie throws up all over the back of Ann’s head! In shock, Ann pulls right up onto the curb of a monument. Obviously the monument area is not designed for visitor parking. Ann gets Cassie out of the car and right there, with Major General J.E.B. Stuart peering down from his horse, strips her daughter naked. She takes off her own sweater and does her best to wipe poor little Cassie down. She can’t quite think about the vomit lodged in her hair. Then guess who pulls up – a policeman. He asks what is going on and is not amused by a vomit covered Mom and a toddler in her birthday suit! Ann pops naked Cassie into her carseat and heads for home.
Bottom line: Give yourself a break. Especially during the holidays, when there are just not enough hours in the day, try to build in coffee time with a friend or just ten minutes to sit in a quiet room…. without your phone. Love on your kids and just do the best you can. And call on God for strength, patience and a sense of humor.