sometimes parenting can make you feel just a little crazy

hard things

Parenting is full of hard things. Like, "Giving birth was SO painful," or "It's tough saying no, but I do it because I don't want my kid to be a spoiled brat." Considering that these are, generally speaking, expected hard things, they're not really...well...that hard. For me, anyway. No, it's the other things, the ones that blindside me, which are truly difficult. Such as...

Not eating my kid's candy - Children get candy for everything. Every week there's some new commercially-exploitable mythical being finding absurdly inventive ways to torture adults. So, preschool, school, birthday parties and soccer games are a feeding frenzy almost always resulting in sugar, fake tattoos and dollar store knick-knacks entering the household. I just want that damn chocolate. My mind is weak. The rush of dinner is over and the kitchen is abandoned. It takes every ounce of willpower left in me to leave it where it lies. I'll end up drinking my evening calories later anyway.

Keeping my cool - Call me a cucumber in certain high pressure situations. I know how to dig deep, pull on my big girl pants and get the job done, saving the meltdown for after everything is settled. I have never, ever in my entire life blown my gasket as often as I have around my children. My oldest, Frank, is especially good at pushing buttons and always has been. No surprise he drives me up a wall. Duke, my normally shy guy, is the shock to my system. He just does not let anything go. On one hand, he's polite most of the time. He knows enough to say, "Excuse me, Mom," if I'm talking to Hubby and he wants something. The problem is he will say it ad nauseum, even when I have already acknowledged him with sincere eye contact and calmly said, "Wait for just one minute so Mommy and Daddy can finish our conversation." He'll keep going. I grit my teeth and fake smile. He just doesn't stop. When I eventually erupt, he immediately starts bawling. I can't win.

Predicting what size they need - As soon as you think you have it figured out and can safely purchase that clearance item to use next year, junior goes through a hulk-like growth spurt.  Either that or he hits a plateau.  Or, it's on clearance because the manufacturer totally missed the mark on the sizing. Regardless, you're stuck with that perfect shade of [fill in color of junior's eyes], normally wildly pricey, big name whatchamacallit and it will stay in the bin with the tags on for the next five years. Sucker.

The case is not totally hopeless. I'm always searching for new ways to manage the inflow of information to my brain to create better output from my mouth. You'd be surprised what you can block out.  It's especially helpful when Frank tells me I should count to 10 to calm down.  Oh yeah, so helpful.