Like all parents, I am proud of my children. When they accomplish something; I love to share my excitement and I am free flowing with the praises.
When exactly did this stop being enough?
This week my middle had her audition into the talented theater program. Yes, she had practiced her monologue for weeks. I had helped her, video taped her so she could see for herself, and even watched videos upon videos of the same performance. I am fully aware of her efforts…to the point I could probably recite it myself.
As soon as she got home today she Face Timed me with screams of joy that she had made it! I am not sure who was more excited in that moment. I let her know I would be home from work for hugs soon.
When I made it home I did just that! I was beaming as much as her and wanted her to tell me everything. But what happened next almost made me crazy. My daughter instead of taking pride in her achievement today and feeling how proud I was of her hard work…started in like a total opportunist with a laundry list of possible celebratory rewards.
I’m not a total Scrooge; I suggested ice cream after dinner. Oh no! At this point my tween felt that she had earned nothing less than a dinner out, followed by ice cream, a stop at the store for a new cell phone case, and maybe one of the new Polaroid cameras. Why she stopped shy of requesting a parade in her honor I have no idea…
One of my Mom pals called and I vented a bit. I already confessed in a earlier post to being a basic mom most days. Even though I am well aware she was beyond reason, I felt guilty. Like full pledged mom-guilt. Somehow I immediately felt myself questioning if I do enough.
She reassured me that essentially I should just look at it jokingly-as I am doing my sweet Caroline a favor.
When Caroline (years from now) becomes a mother-she can now be super mom and repeatedly use the line, “my mother never…” with her own crew! Genius! I do not over do these things so you can be a better mom than me!
She can spend weeks planning elaborate celebrations for daily events. Brushed your teeth? Who-hoo send some balloons to school! Maybe she will greet her children every single day when they arrive home from school with freshly baked cookies! Awesome!
Since my episode of mom guilt occurred while I was conveniently at the grocery store she got cupcakes in her honor tonight.
With my new perspective there is really nothing left to do but keep on being mediocre, lick the frosting and wait for the piles of thank you notes to roll in saying, “thanks mom for never…”