He was whining. I hate whining.
I made him tea (nice mommy!). I refused to give him a ride (evil mommy!).
I think Monday mornings are hard and he should buck up. I also think that things like sore throats are often fleeting morning events that should be treated as such.
Then a friend told me that her son's 8-day fever started as a sore throat and there's something going around school and it's awful and is fast-moving and has become pneumonia in two girls and and and and...
All of this gave me pause. Why exactly did I ignore his whining? What was my motivation for pushing him out the door? I work at home--so it wasn't that. He could easily stay here.
Motivation. Why do we do what we do? It's the most important question a mother has to ask. Why? Why? Why? If we don't analyze, we'll keep making the same bad decisions over and over.
All weekend, I'd been thinking about a minor athletic setback he experienced this weekend. I won't go into it--it was absurd in many ways--but it made me have all sorts of thoughts like this: is he strong enough? is he tough enough? is it my fault that he's not strong and tough enough? (repeat, ad nauseam....)
Did I push him out the door because I wanted him to be a tougher kid on the playing field? No more nice mommy! This is the real world! Get out there and fight to the death! You're going to let a mamsy pamby sore throat stop you? No wonder you didn't...
This is not good parenting.
The sending him off to school with a sore throat: neither here nor there.
The feelings of guilt and blame and the inappropriate expression of these feelings--not okay.
This of course was a minor thing. Who cares? No biggie. If he's really sick, he'll come home. But if I can catch the minor stuff, then the major stuff often comes into focus. What am I really thinking? Feeling? Expressing? Is it appropriate, or is it Tiger Mother nonsense--me trying to shape my children into the people I want them to be for my own selfish motives and punishing them for being who they are?
I hope he's not getting really sick. I'm going to pay more attention when he comes home--to him, not to me and my hang ups.
Causes Diana Holquist Supports