Thursday, November 19, 2009


Why do we do it?

The motherhood thing? I mean seriously, why?

Is it biological, logical, family pressure, life pressure, or because we think we "should"?

Cause it aint easy. And alot of times, it aint fun. It's thankless. It is, essentially, working for a 2 foot tyrant that could care less about our wants and needs. You give and give and give, and get not so much back.


Then there is that moment. Yeah, if you are a mom, you already have it in your head, right? That moment. Maybe it was just an hour ago, or maybe a year ago, or maybe when they were born...but it's there.

When you looked at your child and realized, oh my gosh, how did I ever live without you? How, how? How can I keep from holding you and smelling your head and cuddling you? How can I put you down for a nap or run an errand and be away from you?

THAT moment. When love envelops you- no....strangles you. Your eyes fill and your stomach turns over and you ache with devotion.

That's why we do it. Once, twice, 5 times. Right?

I've struggled over the past few days. I have had a cranky, out of sorts, and somewhat agressive little girl. She has been prone to fits and crying and screaming. I love her, deeply, but for the past few days, it's ben really hard to like her.

Yesterday, I was taking her unwilling self into her bedroom for naptime. She was having a royal fit, flailing, etc. I popped her leg. She hit me back, just as quick. My eyes widened. I sat her down and said very firmly "You DO NOT hit mommy." She came back with "Don't hit ME mommy!!"

And just like that, I got it. She does not see a spank as punishment, consequence, or repurcussion of bad behavior. She sees it as agression. And agression begets agression.

I don't spank often. When I do, I always have cause. There have always been warnings. I do everyting BUT spank the majority of the time.

But yesterday made me sit down and think. Alot.

I have been lazy. I have been tired and worn down. I have been inconsistent. I have done too much tv, and too little playtime. I have taken the "in the moment" discipline instead of thinking of what lies ahead. And you reap what you sow.

So my sweet little girl has gotten lost. She has been on haitus, and this little goblin who has been looking for attention at any cost has replaced her. It happend slowly, insidiously, but I allowed it by looking the other way.

So last night, I had a breakdown. Mark and I talked alot about what to do. We made a plan, put it into action first thing this morning. No more spanks. No more raised voices. More love, more playtime, more structure. Time outs for consequences, getting down to her level and talking to her. Making her be accountable. Not letting anything slide, no matter how tired we are.

Within 2 hours of waking this morning, I had a different kid. Obedient, happy, sweet. Pushing boundaries, sure, but also responding very well to the consequences.

Then as I put her down for nap, she had a small fit. I handled it. Several minutes later, she was crying in bed. I went to her, and she asked for her "woobie" back, as she had thrown it and I had taken it away. I gave it back, along with some words about not throwing things when she gets angry.

I was about to leave the room when she asked for a hug. I gave her one and she kissed my cheek, and pulled back to look at me.

"Mama, I just love you."

"I love you too."

"Alla time?"


"Even when I throw woobie?"

"Even then."

"Thank you mama."

And today, that was my moment. The moment I knew why I do this. Because no matter how far we fall, and how out of hand our children get, we love them. And there is redemption, second chances, and forgiveness. On BOTH sides.

It's hard work. Anything worth doing is. But it's beautiful as well.