Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Looking Good (on social media)

On Social Media:

I look like a really good mom.  Other people might be a little jealous, even.  My children usually have their clothes on correctly, their hair is done one creative way or another.  The pictures of any food that I take have been meticulously plated.  The crafts that I do are put in just the right lighting, placed just the right way so that you can't see any flaws.

Any posts of quoting the children are usually politically correct.  I make sure the background is clear of any items that might be perceived as harmful.  The food they are pictured with is appropriate and healthy.  Usually the pictures are of a fun family activity or a normal childhood action that is not offensive in any way.

The pages that I "follow" and "like" are proactive, be-a-great-mom sites.  They picture crafts and activities to do with the kids that go along with the holidays or seasons.  They feature articles on connecting with the children on an emotional level, being a positive parent who doesn't have to yell or intimidate their children in any way.

In Reality:

I am far from looking good.  Sometimes multiple pieces of clothing are missing or piled on; Flower has discovered how to take her clothes off and likes to do so at any given moment, or she decides she wants to wear everything at once.  Princess absolutely hates having her hair done so it is quite frequently a tangled mess.  Plus, she dresses herself and is often not dressed appropriately for the weather or the outing.  

Flower has discovered her sister's closet and is trying to wear what she can

Any food items that I've made are usually flops.  I'm really not too good in the kitchen, although if I think I was less distracted by fighting, screaming children, then I might be able to do a better job.  Thankfully, Husband will eat whatever I put on the table.  Lately, since I've been so sick due to pregnancy, I must confess that food has been of the instant microwaveable variety (i.e. chicken nuggets, corn dogs, etc).

Crafts?  I can crochet, but my children refuse to wear anything I make, so it's mostly for profit.  Kid crafts are a joke.  I tried, I really did.  However, most crafts call for some item that I have never heard of and therefore don't have and when I go to the store to try to find I end up leaving without it because somebody had a meltdown and I just needed to get out fast.

I did try a few simple ones with Princess once, back when I was a brand new stay at home mom.  I set everything up just like the instructions said to do.  One was an easy stained glass painting activity.  I was prepped and ready to go.  I put Princess in front of the activity and start giving her instructions.  As we already knew, she's pretty independent and wants to do things her way.  Needless to say, she just wanted to tear the whole thing apart and not do the painting.  I learned my lesson that day.  No more crafts that I have to take any time to set up.

My children say all kinds of crazy things.  I'm sure yours do, too.  However, for fear of looking like a bad mom, it stays off the internet. And the background of my pictures, the parts I carefully cut out, are an absolute disaster.  I have to laugh when I see other mom's cleaning schedules.  "Dusting" is a concept I am not familiar with.  Among that is the term "folding laundry."  I have a dirty pile and a clean pile that we dig items out of.  I give myself kudos for actually getting the stuff clean.  Huge accomplishment, there.  Reeally.

I'm also pretty forgetful.  I tend to leave scissors on the table, or markers or pens lying around.  Thus, most everything we have has been written on.  Or almost cut (usually Princess tells on her little sister if she gets hold of something she isn't supposed to have.  I swear, I do watch my children).  

I try really really hard to be a positive parent.  I mean, I've read the Facebook articles.  That counts for something, right?  However, when one child is beating up another and causing duress and lots of screaming, I might tend to jump right in and not be as positive as I hope to be.  My patience is worn thin many a days.

There's more, but I think I'll save it for another day.  I sometimes look at other moms pictures and posts and have a little jealousy going on.  But then I remember that people can look at me that way too, and then I have to laugh.

Don't try too hard, Moms.  Do what you can.  You're doing a great job, even if reality tells a completely different story than Facebook.             

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