Are you an insecure parent?
With all of the Pinterest-perfect images and Facebook-friendly comments surrounding us, it’s easy to feel like you aren’t good enough.
You may not be as crafty as another mom or as patient as another.
Maybe you didn’t buy your kids that gigantic swing set that their friends have or take them on a Disney cruise like another family.
I’m that mom who walks my son to the bus stop, only to remember that I forgot to make him go to the bathroom. As he’s “watering” the tree in the front yard, I’m yelling “hurry! I see the bus” while hoping the neighbors aren’t looking and the bus driver can’t see my son hiding behind the tree.
I’m that mom hanging my head with embarrassment as my son informs the cashier at the grocery store that he has boogers (thankfully he didn’t choose that moment to pick them).
I’m that mom bribing my daughter with cookies so she’ll sit in her car seat and let me buckle her without a fight (it’s no wonder she demands cookies for breakfast), all the while hoping no one is in the car parked next to mine.
Every parent has their insecurities (at least, that’s what I tell myself to feel better), but it’s hard to see them through the Pinterest-perfect images and delightful pictures that everyone shares on Facebook. Don’t get me wrong. I love seeing how other parents interact with their children, but when mine are throwing tantrums in the middle of McDonald’s (shame on me for feeding them that garbage, anyway), it’s a little difficult to feel like a good mother.
I’ve always been introverted, but it’s especially hard to be an introverted mother.
I love to volunteer at my son’s school, but the thought of talking to other (better) parents in real life makes me hyperventilate.
My kids seem to sense my nervousness and always choose the most inappropriate times to share their potty training tactics or exciting bodily functions. I hate taking my kids out in public by myself and I always try to corral the farmer, my mother, or close friends into going with me to doctors’ appointments, lunch dates, or anywhere else I need to go. At least then I can share the blame (or at least have a sympathetic helper) when my child decides to race around the library, grabbing her diaper and yelling “POOP” at the top of her lungs as I check our her books (yes, that happened on more than one occasion, and no, the other library patrons did not find it amusing).
So, how do you get over being an insecure parent?
I haven’t totally figured that out, but I am learning to embrace life’s crazy moments.
Wanting to hide in a hole gets you nowhere, and these moments will someday make great stories for the grandchildren.
In the meantime, I try to keep teaching my kids that it’s not normally ok to water the trees, talk about boogers, or yell “poop” in a library.
Life isn’t a Pinterest-perfect image, no matter how hard we try (or maybe it is and I just haven’t figured it out yet).
To all those moms (myself included) who feel insecure or embarrassed when our child isn’t perfect, let’s stop wishing we could crawl in a hole.
Let’s embrace these messy moments with our children. They won’t be here forever, and neither will the judgemental eyes of those “Pinterest perfect” parents. I’d rather remember the messy moments of life than the disapproving stares.