I really do appreciate the lovely comments you all leave me on this blog. There are days when I have blogger's regret after posting something and without fail someone shares some encouraging words that make it seem ok. Having said that though, I want to be completely honest about how some of the "you're a great mom" stuff can make me feel. It makes me feel a bit like a fraud. Actually, it makes me feel like a liar. I write these posts with every intention of sharing an honest picture of our life but I inevitably have the power to pick and choose what I share with you. I tend not to focus on the parent failures like plugging the kids into their elecronics on a Sunday morning because I had to much wine the night before or forgetting to feed Kate supper because she would never ask for it (yes, I did this). I love my girls more than words and I provide for their needs and I work hard to make sure Kate gets the best services around but that is small part of what I am.
I think I am an ok mom Maybe even one of the okayest mom's around. But still just ok. I let me kids watch too much TV and I let my little autistic daughter stim on the IPad for far longer than I should. We rarely eat together as a family, mostly because we must prepare three seperate meals at supper time. I take the kids out to eat way too much. I let them whine to get their way. I buy them things to make myself feel better about my shortcomings. I compare them to other kids. I can be impatient and bossy. I give in to tantrums and sit on the floor and cry during meltdowns. I ask far too much of my five year old when it comes to dealing with her little sister. I constantly hear myself say, "I'm tired." I would like to get through one day without saying that. The list goes on and on.
I would be this kind of mom even if Kate didn't have autism. I am not more tired or more stressed because we have more to deal with. We don't have 'more' to deal with. We are dealing with our lot. You all have your own issues. There are lots of days where I wake up and immediately look forward to bed time. I don't exercise enough and my diet has gone to hell. I am generally not a great mom or a role model for mom's of special needs kids. I drink wine and I swear (regular readers won't be shocked by this confession). I enjoy being rebellious and deviant in some ways. I love to challenge the status quo and I have a seriously bad attitude some days. I am full of faults. So, when I read things like, "you're doing an amazing job, " I have to wonder if you knew the real truth of it all would you be saying that?
I think I run pretty average in the mom department. Should I blame the impossibly high standards society sets for moms? Should I blame the standards I have set for myself? Not even a little bit. I am flawed. I am learning to deal with it. Anyway, I hope you understand that I am not being ungrateful for the kind words left in the comments section. I just wanted you to know that I am not that mom. That one you keep talking about after you read my posts. I am not even close. In fact, I don't think she exists.
Grace and Kate's mom. (Shanell)