The past several months have been hard. I am in my first pregnancy and it has not treated me well. When I have talked to people about morning sickness, they talk about vomiting three to four times a day... try twenty. That would be me. So as a parent of two foster kids and an eleven year old, my parenting abilities have been severely lacking since I got knocked up.
For the most part, I have been playing the "poor me" soundtrack in my head, when in fact, I have been blessed, because I have had amazing support that not everyone is as lucky to have! I play over my failures, how I shouted at my daughter about something that a month ago I would have calmly stated a correction or maybe even added a discipline, or how I hadn't been trying to engage the toddlers in conversation, because I was afraid if I opened my mouth, I might upchuck. Then I reminisce at what a failure I am.
Truth is though, it's not just this time in my life that I have failed as a parent. We all do from time to time. I think with all the parenting books/blogs/articles, oh and let's not forget Pinterest, some of us feel we are supposed to be super moms. We believe we need to be engaging our children in educational play during all their waking hours, cleaning during nap, calmly discussing wrong doings, all while dressed in fashionable clothes, flawless makeup, and perfectly placed hair.
So, I fail as a mom on a daily basis. I either shout too often, play too much tv, or even cry from pure exhaustion. Then I look around me, and I see that all my friends are convinced they are failing their children in some area of life. They feel they didn't do enough school with them, or ate too much fast food, or their house is a mess. The thing is, I look at these same moms and think, "Man, they are amazing moms." So if I can count myself as one of those less than perfect moms, then I figure I am in good company. So I have decided, failing as a mom is okay, I just need to make the decision to start anew after each fail and do my best.
So here's to the failing mom, you are not alone. Brush today's mistakes off, stand tall, and give those sweet children hugs. Today is a new day.... And if you don't get today right, there is always tomorrow.
Kevin and I officially started trying to have children a year after we got married. After the first year of trying, I confided in very few friends that we had been trying. After two years, I had my first confirmed miscarriage, and realized I had had that happen before. After five years, I made the hard decision, to make it nearly impossible to become pregnant, due to several things going on that the only could be cured through a tubal ligation. God blessed me with Emily a year later under unfortunate means. The next six years were filled with hopeful adoptions, foster care cases, and ivf treatments, all of which would fail. Six years after Emily came along, and 12 years at the beginning of our journey I am now 11.5 weeks pregnant. I am fully aware that this baby could be taken from me at any minute. That's my story.
Before I was open with people about our fertility we would get this question a lot or some form of it. After my sister in law who was married two years after us had their first, I felt like we were bombarded by our church, "Now it's your turn." "Why don't you guys get started." "Your little sister is beating you out." We'd been trying for three years by that point. Then one day, I had enough of the question, and some unfortunate couple who I actually really like came up to me and not only told us we should be having children, but playfully teased me for two torturous long minutes. I looked right at them and without emotion said, "Actually we have been trying for several years now, and I believe I have had a couple miscarriages if not more.." The look on their face made me feel guilty, because my intent was to make them feel bad for what they were doing. I accomplished that. I knew they never meant to hurt me, and I don't have ill feelings towards anyone who ever said anything. I was hurt and I lashed out.
The bottom line is that this question caused a lot of pain, but led me to be very open about my infertility. Being open about my infertility occasionally caused pain, but opened up so much more to blessing. I am very thankful for my openness and glad that I shared so openly. I have been blessed many times over for my willingness to be open. But not everyone has that comfort level. It took me years to be this open.
It's funny, I thought much of the pain would end after Emily came. It did not. I thought much of the pain would end if I got pregnant. I can honestly say it didn't. Pain from infertility is a unique thing. It's not a visible loss, it's not even a tangible loss, but it's a loss that even the fulfillment of having children will not erase, because the scar remains. It's also a loss that those who have not experienced it will never truly grasp the pain of it fully. Even though I am pregnant, I think I will always view myself as an infertile woman.
This Christian mom is far from perfect, but continually strives to grow and develop. She is an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction and focuses a lot on personal growth. She loves to share what she has learned through her studies and her own failures, as well as walks alongside other mothers as they learn together the ins and outs of parenting.