I don't lie because I want people to think I'm an incredible parent. I don't lie for the fame and the glory. I don't lie to pretend to be someone I am not. Most of my lies are just gifts I give people I don't feel like explaining myself to. I don't need to justify my actions to strangers so, yeah, there are some mom habits I definitely lie about. I lie because I don't feel like dealing with judgmental looks. I lie because I don't feel like listening to lectures. I lie because sometimes it's just easier and it's mostly harmless and I don't have the time to get into some heavy conversation about the intricacies of my parenting philosophy.
I didn't used to lie, though. I used to tell people the hard knock truth about my parenting. I used to believe that if I showed what real (or at least my real) parenting looks like, more moms would take down their guards and start behaving like normal human beings with flaws and the capacity to make mistakes. I used to tell everyone that I curse in front of my kids, that I feed my kids chicken nuggets when we are in a rush, that I leave my toddler unattended while I take a shower, and that I turn on the television on Saturday mornings so my kids can watch a show (or three) while I continue sleeping.
I used to be so honest with everyone, but then people started throwing unpleasant looks my way and said things like, "Hmmm, interesting." So, I leave to truth for my close friends. Everyone else gets the watered down version of my parenting. You know, the version that makes them happy.
I Definitely Don't Feed My Kids Junk Food
For a while, I was the queen of packed lunches. I have to confess, my lunches were pretty awesome. I bought one of those fancy bento boxes and packed the entire food pyramid in there. I did that for my daughter throughout all of kindergarten. When first grade came around, I tried. I really tried. Then my daughter repeatedly brought home half-eaten lunches, or completely untouched lunches, and I decided I was done. So, now she buys lunch and we all know how "nutritious" those school lunches are.
Also, my kids eat junk. Like, not all the time, but they've had all sorts of stuff I never thought they would.
I Make My Kids Do A Lot Of Enrichment Excercises
While many of my friends discuss sending their kids to special enrichment programs, or doing enrichment exercises at home, I nod in agreement. "Yes, enrichment is important," I concur. Then, I smile and think, "I should really get on that."
Yeah, I never do.
I Have Infinite Patience
I love preaching how much patience parenting takes, but let's be honest: I lose my sh*t almost on the daily. After the 50th "why" and after the 10th "no," my patience runs thin. By "thin," I mean non-existent.
So, yes, while parenting does require a remarkable amount of patience, I am not one of those parents who has been gifted such a superpower.
I Never Stress About [Insert Lie]
I stress about most things, but I don't admit it. I don't admit stressing about things not because I want to come off calm and collected, but because I want to lie to myself. If I lie to myself enough, maybe I'll believe it? It hasn't worked yet, but they say hope dies last. So, you know, there's that.
I Always Buy My Kids Educational Toys
Sure, my kids have some educational toys. However, when holidays and birthdays come around, it's a free-for-all. Do they play with their science magic kits? Sure. Do they enjoy a round of a matching game and a good puzzle now and again? Of course. But are those their favorite toys? Not even close. Barbies, trucks, and dress-up galore, these are a few of my kid's favorite things.
I Have Absolutely Never Spanked My Kids
I have. It was awful. I wish I didn't.
I Would Never Leave My Kids Alone In The Car
See, this is one of those things you can now apparently get in ridiculous trouble for. But, seriously? I mean, if I'm running into a store for an ATM and my kids are in a locked, turned off car, what will happen? The answer is nothing. Nothing will happen.
Still, I lie about occasionally leaving my kids in the car for all of two minutes, because someone somewhere will call the police and I will suddenly be deemed an unfit parent.
I Allow Minimal Television
I mean, yes, I do restrict my kid's electronics time and I don't believe in "educational" iPad games for infants and toddlers, but I'm pretty sure my kids watch plenty of television. Probably way more than they should and way more than is recommended.
So, while I'd like to believe my kids don't watch that much television, they probably watch too much.
I Give My Children My Undivided Attention
Yes. When I'm not working, or cleaning, or cooking, or doing laundry, or when I'm not staring into my phone. So, like, hardly ever. Sigh.
I Always Follow Through With Consequences
I'll be the first one to say that it is super important to stick with whatever punishment you promised to your kids. However, I don't always follow through myself. There have been a few times when I threatened my kids with something I knew I didn't want to follow through with and, as a result, I failed miserably.
I Never Have Uncontrollable Road Rage With My Kids In The Car
I have never cursed out another driver. I have never flipped off anyone who cut me off. My daughter has never expressed her disappointment in my actions. My daughter has also never told me that I was being mean while driving and that one guy did "not deserve to be called that name." Nope, never. None of this ever happened. I model good and respectful behavior.
I Have It All Together
Ha. Ha. Ha. Ha. This past week alone I fed my children takeout, pizza, and leftovers for dinner, lived out of the laundry basket, had to re-dry clothes because they got way too wrinkled in said laundry basket, let the dishes pile up so high it took almost an hour to wash, locked myself out of my classroom, forgot an appointment, realized I left my gym clothes at home after I pulled up to the gym, ate pizza for breakfast and cake for dinner, forgot to shave, and spilled coffee all over my car.
So, yeah, this mom has it all together. Nice try, Dina. Nice try.