And THESE are definitely not the moments.

So all my sappiness last night came back to bite me in the ass tonight.

Pardon my French.

Let me preface this story by saying that Kate is now on day 18 of what the doctors are telling us is a stomach virus. Day 18 of a stomach virus.

So tonight when I got home from work, Andy went to have dinner with some friends (the poor guy deserves a night out – he’s been stuck at home with both kids cleaning up body fluids for 18 days… which really, I would be institutionalized by now. I don’t do stuck-at-home very well. As evidenced by the rest of this story). So, I heated up some leftovers, but after dinner I was already slightly stir crazy.

By the time Sammy had eaten Easy Mac straight out of the container AND ingested a newspaper cut-out picture of his favorite baseball player, I decided we had to hit the road. Our usual haunts were out of the question – couldn’t go to the park because it was 1000 degrees and we were already beating dehydration off with a stick… couldn’t go to Grandma’s because the BRAT diet does not include ice cream, Oreos OR Doritos… couldn’t go to Aunt Anna’s because we didn’t want to give Baby Lily the plague.

The library was about the only option I could think of, but of course it was closed (yay for budget cuts). So we went to the grocery instead and picked up the essentials for the current state of our lives – yogurt, saltines, tissues and toilet paper. Then, there was nothing left to do but go home.

The entire night, Kate was a mess. Eighteen days of being sick was catching up with her – she was tired and sad and incredibly sensitive. Her brother couldn’t look at her sideways without her bursting into tears. Or screaming at him at the top of her lungs, one or the other.

I did not handle it well.

I was tired (Kate has been throwing up at 1:30 a.m. like freaking clockwork) and grumpy and just not feeling it.

So I spent the entire night in a pissy mood. Andy texted me at one point to find out how things were going, and I must have sounded rather despondent, because he offered to come home right away.

For whatever reason, my response (“It’s ok, I promise not to drown them in the bathtub”) wasn’t all that comforting to him. He’s kinda paranoid like that.

Anyway, here’s the thing. I spent all day at work. I rolled in the driveway at 5:15. The kids were both in bed asleep by 9:15. But for whatever reason I couldn’t manage to keep my shit together for four hours.

I only did four hours of parenting today (unless you count the five minutes I was on the phone with Kate today when she called to tell me she wanted some toast. Because that’s a request I can fill 30 miles away.).

You would think I could have patience and a smile on my face for four hours. You would think I would cherish every minute of four lousy hours.

You would think. But I couldn’t, or rather, I didn’t. I would say I was patient/smily/cherishing for a sum total of 12.45 minutes of that time.

And you know what the bitch of it is?

When I put Kate to bed, she and I laid there snuggling, and she couldn’t stop telling me that she loved me “to infinity and beyond,” that I was the best mom in the world, and that we had the best family in the world. Her words weren’t manipulative or or tinged with ohmigod-mommy-is-finally-losing-it fear (I only threatened that bathtub thing once, geesh) – she was completely sincere.

Despite all my shortcomings, all my missteps and failings, that girl loves me. I don’t deserve it, but she does.

She loves me even when I suck. I’m not sure if that’s sweet or depressing.

But I love her too. To infinity and beyond.

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  1. Oh I know how you feel. I spent Wednesday yelling my head off, had my daughter crying her eyes out for most of the day…generally being s sucky mom…and at the end of the day she gave me a kiss at storytime and said she’d had a good day. ???? I don’t deserve it either.

  2. Mackenzie says:

    Totally let the baby “cry it out” for a good 20mins last night, when she woke up from a sound sleep at 9:45p. Really I just wanted to finish watching Top Chef. Finally go in to check on her and she’s sitting on a pile in her stinky pants! Mommy Fail!

  3. jessikaw says:

    wow! thank you for making me feel like i’m not alone.

  4. Geesh cousin, you totally made me cry. Of course as we all know, I am emotionally unstable. But i think Kate is right! Everyone turns in a bad night once in a while but since you have all those good mom credits on your side from your previous stellar performances, you deserved – and got – a pass. 🙂

  5. 335 W. Church Street says:

    dude, you are an awesome mom with awesomer kids (who i can’t wait to see next week!…unless kate is still vom-ing and then you can just text me as you whiz down I-75…just sayin’) i don’t have kids to yell at just yet but i am practicing on my poor husband who has been feeling the brunt of my basketcasey-ness lately. keep your chin up and stay away from the bubble bath!

  6. That was, in my opinion, the truest picture of motherhood. Loved that story for it’s honesty and emotion. We’ve all been there/done that in one way or another. There’s no love like that between moms and our kids. Thanks for sharing!

  7. The dudes did need that night out, even if I was going bat-crazy here at home myself. SUMMER! Need I say more…

    Hope Kate’s ok – 18 days of a stomach virus sounds awful. Hang in there!

  8. I don’t appreciate it one bit, you making me cry at work. Not one bit.

  9. I love your post. It make me feel more normal. On one of my “bad mommy” days my daughter drew me a picture and said I want to be a mommy just like you.

  10. <3

    I am a work from home mom and I have those days all the time (even without the stomach flu).

  11. As previously stated, WE ALL HAVE THOSE DAYS! This really hits home for me today, thanks! We are blessed by are kids.

  12. I can totally relate. There was one particularly Bad Mommy Day last summer…When my husband got home from work I was drinking wine (which I don’t normally keep in the house) out of my coffee mug–I thought, “This is how some stay-at-home moms become alcoholics!” There are days I can totally understand how some people get to that point, but most of us don’t end up crossing that line into the scary places. Some of us do. It’s a hard job, but thank GOD our kids are so worth it & forgive us so much! 🙂

  13. The Late Great Erma Bombeck said, “Children are a punishment for an early marriage.”


  14. Though we’ve avoided all manner of ‘spew and poo’ viruses (praise the Lord!!), we’ve been having a doozy of a time with our girls going to bed at night. They’re 3 1/2-ish and 2-ish, and share a room. At least in theory. We’ve tried different approaches, currently putting the younger to bed 30 minutes before the oldest. Last night (and for a few nights now), they just would. NOT. Sleep. for love nor money. We tried separating them, and they just kept setting each other off. I’m due with #3 in 5 weeks, my house was desperately dirty, I was trying to wash dishes, do laundry, clean the play room, and the whole time they’re both just tired and screaming. I had to walk out at one point, and just took a little stroll down the driveway. Thankfully, my husband stepped in and took over with them – because I was cracking up. At one point, I just sat down and started sobbing, it was just all too much.
    Then I ended up sharing a single bed with my youngest, because she woke up screeching inexplicably. I know this comment is kind of rambling, but my point is that I think as parents we’ve all been there. And the next time you’re there, feel free to email me – chances are I’ll have had a moment or two like that in the last day or two!

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