Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Mustache

There is a new book out about a Chinese Tiger Mom. I haven't read it, but I've read reviews. And interviews. And an open letter to the author in the Wall Street Journal. I get the gist of what it's about and I'm withholding my opinion about the mother because I didn't read it.

Everyone has their own parenting style and it's so polarizing. I believe I'm a good mom, but I have my shortcomings, as much as the next. I have my own ideas about what I want to instill in my children and the limits of what I'll let them do and what I'll do, as well.

The most important thing to me as a mom is to accept them for who they are. Both of my children are so different and wonderful in their own ways and I try very hard to treat them as individuals, even though I threatened to treat them as twins if they didn't watch it - for what offense I have no recollection. I'm certain if I actually had twins, I would see them individually, as well. (And yes, I think I can be a good mom and threaten them occasionally.)

As much as I think I'm doing a good job in the Big Picture of parenting, I have my faults and flaws in the Little Picture. Today I made my youngest daughter cry and for that I'm truly sorry. She got a new outfit yesterday and was wearing it today. It was a pair of jeans (old) and a new blouse with blue baby roses. She had on her new shoes and pulled her hair back into a pony-tail. I told her she looked beautiful. Then I told her she would look even more beautiful if she didn't have a blue mustache. That hurt her feelings. I'm not even sure why, but it made me think of the book. I don't criticize my children very much in that way. Sure, if they haven't brushed their hair in a week and it starts to look like a rat's nest, I'll tell them and force the brush or threaten a haircut, but I never tell them they look like Pepto-vomit when they mix seven different colors of pink. I simply appreciate the effort they put into their choices and admire their personality.

I feel so badly about the mustache remark. But I think I made up for it with chocolate milk. I don't really know why I thought of that book, except that I'm sympathetic to parenting criticisms. This is a hard-damn job. The hardest I've ever had.


Anonymous said...

Nice deflection you brute....replacing the blue mustache with a chocolate one... Now get back to sewing in your Mom Cave.

ckh said...

My bag of tricks is always full.

No sewing today, just cutting out fabric. In fact, the day was just one lazy nothing. There is always tomorrow, I guess.

Marie: said...

Awww. This post got to me. We try SO hard and not matter what, fail to be perfect. And wth knows what is perfect anyway? Mom guilt gets to me too, all the time, but I love them, they know it, and the whole family keeps bumbling along. Isn't this all any of us do? And, maybe, just maybe, that IS perfect. Drop by sometime... now serving virtual coffee.