Mom Fails. They’re a real thing.
Prior to having children, I thought mom fails were cute little “snafus” a mom might make, but on no scale would ever be considered an actual parent fail for which they might be scathingly judged for.
And then, I had children. And I failed. And I realized how wrong I was.
Case in point: One evening I went to get my son’s paci out of his bed in preparation for bed that night and noticed dried vomit on his sheets. I never heard him throw up the previous night and clearly didn’t see it all day until getting him ready for bed (thankfully it was daycare day so he didn’t nap in it). It was yellowed and had chunks.
……..(i’m’a just bury my head in my hands right here).
Whether you’re a new mom, in the throes of child-rearing, or one of the wise among us, we have all had and (for many of us) will continue to have moments where we feel like an absolute failure as a mom. I know this because I took to the interwebs and asked my friends, my contributor peers, and some wise women with grown children if they had any insights to share, and let me tell you, the stories came in ALL DAY.
“Last week we were putting up Christmas decorations and I lost sight of my 3 year old for 60 seconds. I later found him in the attic.” – Mom of 3 boys under 6.
“One morning my daughter woke up at 5am crying. I turned over to let her cry this out because she was NOT getting up until 6:45. Finally, I go in at 6:45 and her room reeks of poop. She saw me and said “hi mommy! I poop!” I wanted to die.” –Mom of 1 little girl and one on the way.
“When my children were young, they were all involved in sports and at the time each played at different ball parks at different times. One night, I had a meeting late, so I dropped our oldest daughter (who was only 12) off at her game and went to my meeting while my husband corralled our other two children. About an hour an half later I got home from our meeting and sat down to eat and both my husband and I realized no one had picked up our oldest. It was almost 9pm! I jumped in the car and arrived to her walking down the road from the ballpark.” Mom of adult children
“I once found 6 Bud Light cans in my two year old’s blue car. Two in the cup-holder and four in the trunk.” –Mom of 2 boys
“I sent a kid with a broken arm to gymnastics class (I swear she said she wanted to go!). It was only that night when my husband was giving her a shower and said “she’s really favoring that arm” that we realized it might really be hurt.” -Mom of two elementary school girls.
“I let all my kids pick out their own clothes in the morning and get dressed in their own respective rooms. Afterwards they come to my bathroom for teeth brushing and hair fixing, at which time I critique the outfits, looking solely for weather-appropriate attire and shoes that will be sufficient for the days activities. I try not to deter them from their own individual “styles.” Since they come to be completely dressed, I don’t question their undergarment choices… I’ve since learned my lesson after learning from my son’s preschool teacher that he’s come to school not once, not twice, but THREE TIMES with princess panties on in place of his own underwear.” -Mom of 3; two girls, one boy.
“Around the time my daughter was 16, Wicked came out as a book and my daughter wanted to read it very badly. She told us several of her friends had read it and loved it. I did not preview the book. The day she started reading is she came to me after about 30 minutes to tell me the the 1st chapter was very sexually explicit. I was sick! By chapter 2, the explicit material was done. so there was nothing left to do but let her finish the book. The damage was already done. I failed as a censor and even worse good Southern Baptist Mama.” -Mom of 2 adult children.
“My daughter’s first curse word was a direct result of listening to the Nelly Pandora station during bathtime.”
“My husband taught our toddler to fetch beer from the fridge and toss empty cans in the trash. Is that a fail or life-training? Not sure.”
So, just when you think you’ve done the absolute worst thing ever, think again. I know in the moment, your failure will seem colossal and you’ll be mortified. But, then time will pass and it’ll be a chip in your armor and a hysterical story to tell. Solidarity, mama.