06/09/2015 01:23 pm ET | Updated Jun 09, 2016

The Biggest Lie I Tell My Kids

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Lying is bad. I know this.

As parents, though, we all sometimes lie to our kids. Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy are prime examples of lies we tell. We dress the lie up in cute stories and fun experiences, but, in the end, it's a lie.

The biggest lie I tell my children isn't decorated in fairy tales or splattered with glitter, though. It's simple, plain, and three words long.

I'm almost done.

That's it.

When I've just started making dinner, and my kids are whining and screaming, "Mom! Eat!", I tell them, "I'm almost done." Honestly, though, they're going to need to wait 10 more minutes for me to prep, 20-30 minutes for me to cook, and another 5-10 for it to cool down so they don't burn their tongues as they shove it into their mouths before realizing dinner is "yucky."

But I don't tell them that. I lie.

When I start brushing my 2-year-old's hair and she begins fighting to get away, I tell her, "I'm almost done," despite the fact that I have just begun the arduous task. Untangling her hair, and attempting to remove whatever the last thing she ate was from the strands, takes time in and of itself. Her squirming and arguing and escape attempts only add to the fact that we're going to be there a while.

But I don't tell her that. I lie.

When I sit down at my computer to try to get some work done during daylight hours, and my toddlers suddenly decide that whatever they were doing to entertain themselves is no longer entertaining, I tell them, "I'm almost done." The truth is I'm never done or even almost done. There are always blog posts to write, a book to work on, emails to respond to, a web site to update...

But I don't tell them that. I lie.

When I'm getting them dressed, but they just wanna play...

"I'm almost done."

When they're having meltdown number three at the grocery store, within the first five minutes we're there, and they're wanting to go home...

"I'm almost done."

When I disrupt their bathtime frivolity with washing their forever-sticky bodies...

"I'm almost done."

I don't feel good about lying to my kids, but at least I'm not telling them a dude in a red suit is going to come down our non-existent chimney and bring them toys. Not until next year, anyway.

You can find more from Toni Hammer at Is It Bedtime Yet?, Facebook, and Twitter.

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