As a blog writer I am not here to give you any advice – this is just a story, my story – nothing more.
You have probably read blogs on how to parent like a pro, how to discipline like this, how to parent gently, how to instil certain life lessons, how to talk to your KIDS.. this ain’t that blog post, there will never be one like that from me, I am an average parent – trying my best to raise my kids right just like any other parent out there. I do not read parenting advice columns or books – honestly, I don’t see the point – your child is not my child and visa versa – there is no quick and easy guide to parenting – your advice is not my advice – your parenting is not like mine. NO one in the world has ever raised the perfect kid. Your advice is amazing – but not warranted for me. NO! I am not a parenting SNOB! or pretending to know what the actual hell I am talking about, nor am I saying your way of parenting is right or wrong, NO! I am saying something simple – your parenting style works for you – it won’t work for everyone!
I prefer reading the real shit about parenting not a picture perfect version of the perfect angel, in your perfect house, with their perfect straight A’s – that shit ain’t for me- I am here for the real, the nasty – the gritty bits of parenting. Failing as a parent is not failing – its learning. You can’t fail because parenting is honestly the hardest job in the world and if you do feel like you are failing – then trust me there are millions of parents out there “failing” too! I am not here for your picket fences – my fence is broken – it probably got knocked the fuck down by my toddler. So if you are here for parenting advice of the perfect child and perfect family – I suggest you look away now!
I failed at life yesterday…
It was a day like any other, I was tired, a bit frustrated and upset that my child was doing absolutely EVERYTHING but what she was supposed to be doing.
I have struggled this year with so many internal and external battles that I have neglected what is most close to me – my child. She craves my attention like no one ever has but I have been distracted by my own things to notice her – to truly notice her.
This year has been a toughie for Kirsten, she has not coped well, I am mostly to blame – definitely not probably not maybe – just MOST definitely. I haven’t spent the time I need to with her, the extra effort that I normally put into her just was not there this year. And it has been reflected in her – not only academically but also in other areas of her development.
I was taken aback a few weeks ago when I was called into a meeting at school – I knew what was coming – I just didn’t want to accept it. I am still in denial about most of this year and even as I write this I can still feel that denial gripping me tight.
Kirsten is the most beautiful, caring, honest and loving child. She is also a sensitive soul like me, and I see heaps and heaps of myself in her. She is unique, a little treasure and a firecracker rolled into one – but boy has it been hard for the last couple of months. She doesn’t listen – tests the boundaries like no other. OH WAIT – what boundaries? she has none – does she?
Boundaries are not mandatory in our household – I raise free range children, they mostly do what ever they damn well please (mostly). So lets not lie – it has its good points and bad ones – like basically anything in life there is always a PRO and a CON, Pro: she is free to express herself in anyway, she can say what she wants, feel how she wants, think like she wants, and most things are do-able in her eyes – the independence shows this greatly! Cons: She has no solid boundaries, she sees no consequences for her actions, she is too wild and free, she doesn’t respond well to strict discipline.
Kirsten is an extremely creative soul – its etched deep within her – its what’s most amazing about her and I let this creativity flourish however I can – no matter what! I demand this – I push this and I nurture this part of her because I am like her – I never had it and to this day I always doubt my abilities creatively because of it.
BUT LETS GET ONE THING straight – I LOST my shit last night, I failed myself, I failed her and I failed at life. I gave her a hiding. YES a hiding – she has probably had one or two hiding’s before in her life – many years ago – but this one floored her emotionally – and me too – yes before you loose your shit – I know – I can’t hit my child! Its illegal – I know, but I felt like months and months of disobedience coming slowly together in ONE moment of PURE anger. I was furious, upset and just plain tired – so I did it – I smacked her and I felt like a total piece of shit the moment it was over!
Moral of the story for those taking the time to read this today – YOU as a PARENT will FUCK-UP! We are not perfect. If there was a handbook on being the perfect parent we would all be the best right?
P.S PARENTING ain’t for sissies!