Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Buttoned Up.

Are we taking ourselves too seriously? Is our desire to parent well taking over our entire lives? I'm using 'we' because I'm really hoping it's not just me. I spend an inordinate amount of time thinking about what I say and do in front of the kids. I think it's important. I want to model for them what I want to see from them. For example, they don't need to know that I got so frustrated with the phone company today that I swore and threw things. I don't want them to swear or throw things. I don't want them to get in trouble at school for repeating something they heard at home that was not school friendly.

It's such a challenge - I have hormones, Oh dear god do I have hormones. It's hard to be a perfect parent when the estrogen fairy is dancing in your system and making you crazy. I want them to have childhood innocence for as long as is possible and let me tell you in our current culture holding on to that past age 3 requires significant effort- so I feel I have to work even harder.

My problem is it's not really me. I am irreverent and sarcastic. I like a well used swear word. The Husband and I come from the land of quick wit, self deprecation and fart jokes. We don't really care too much about etiquette and rules. At the same time I believe in respecting the law, your elders and the system (for the most part.) I also think sarcasm out of the mouth of an eight year old sounds ugly. Where's the balance?

How do I stay me but give my kids a solid moral/social grounding? I think I'm supposed to be both - me in my adult time, Mom when I'm with the girls. But I'm home with the girls. I'm Mom a very large part of the day - about 14 hours. Naughty Joy gets antsy. Sarcasm sits on the tip of my tongue 24/7. I have things to say about pop culture (in all of it's car crash like awfulness.) That side of me is getting very bored of being held in. Do I need to go back to work just so I can let me loose a few hours every day? Maybe I should do stand up. I bet lots of people would pay good money to go and listen to a potty mouthed mom telling hilarious stories involving fish sticks, farts and Kim Kardashian.

Seriously though, it's a quandary. I'm a little afraid that when they reach 18 and I feel free to let loose around them, my kids won't recognize me. Who is this woman with the razor sharp tongue that can burp the alphabet? Will they be looking for their sweet, buttoned up mommy? (For those of you who know me IRL I know that you are now rolling on the floor at the thought of me as sweet and buttoned up but let me believe my kids see me that way - at least some of the time.)
As always the answer lies in the middle ground, my good friend Mosey would say "everything in moderation."

How do you swear and fart in moderation?


  1. I hope to raise irreverent, sarcastic kids. I kind of deserve them. No, I understand what you're saying and it is important to find a balance between being a parent and being ourselves. But, I think our sweet kids are sometimes more intuitive than we think and we won't be able to hide who we really are. Besides, farts are funny.

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