I love when I feel I'm adding good in any way to someone else's life by being true to myself and expecting nothing in return. It is much easier with friends than it is with my kids. I'm attached to the outcome with them, as I try to teach and guide on a daily basis. I don't share all the shenanigans that go on in my home because I like to respect their privacy. They are normal kids, which means they are not polite little robots, but rather unique expressions of life. They are their own people and not something I form out of clay.
My children continually challenge my own capacity for growth. Like most moms, it is the most important job to me, and the one I feel I can screw up the most at. There is no manual for every child or every situation. Getting mad when one kid hurts another is normal for me. I'm not all "let's all love one another" when things get intense.
I have unrealistic expectations of how they should treat each other and me at times. We are not on a sitcom of Nickelodeon. Real love is messy. People annoy each other. They fight. Kids may be angels at school and save the crazy for you. You will not understand your kids and they will not understand you. Kids lie and it stabs you in the heart, but that isn't their intention. They are just protecting themselves in their own way. We can read this in theory but in the real deal, day to day, it can be overwhelming. You may feel spent on discipline and effort. The relationship between a parent and a child is the weirdest relationship you will ever have. It is close and intimate. It is cold and distant, with hearts raw and broken. And this could vary not by the year or the day, but by the moment. There will never be a relationship that changes as much in a lifetime as this one. Even with different children, one may challenge you to the core of your love, patience, and sanity recesses.
Sometimes the only I answer I know has no words. It is beyond saying sorry. It may be when you don't get a sorry, but you forgive anyway. It is letting go. It is love. It is starting over. It is as a parent, taking your feelings once expressed, and rising above the right and the wrongness. The truth is your child may hurt your feelings worse than anyone in your life ever could and you will still keep your heart open. It is a kind of amnesia that is planted in your heart. No matter what, you would die for your child, even if they hate you. You may say you are done, you are not giving anymore of yourself, and you set boundaries. But a parents' boundaries are never solid, they melt away at the thought of any pain your child could experience.
The love is the truest thing. The mistakes are human. No matter how old your child is, it is never too late to start again. Put the pride aside and throw the score card away. Let love help you forget. At the end of your life, you will know that love is never wasted. You will know that letting go, forgetting, releasing the drama is a kind of amnesia for the soul's own good.
I call this my Momnesia.
Start here, with the latest stories and news in progressive parenting. Learn more