Yesterday my four year old rode off of a bike trail into a pond. I watched it happen, time slowed as I saw her tire creep closer to the edge of the trail and then tail over tea kettle she went down. She reached out her hand to stop herself on the smooth green lily covered surface and then rapidly disappeared beneath the slime and muck. I could have yelled for her to steer the other direction but then would she have run into the bikers coming in the other direction? Instead, down she went and I jumped off my bike leaving it blocking the trail and slid down after her, grabbing her flailing wet appendages. As she began to scream from the total shock of plunging into the cold brown water my brain kept repeating the same sentence “of course”. Of course this is happening, I knew this was going to happen and yet all that mental preparation and all that knowing that the likelihood that my kid who can’t keep her eyes on the ground in front of her when she’s running full tilt through the living room would have no ability to maintain a straight trajectory on a trail surrounded by mud rocks and water, didn’t make a difference. So of course here we are stripping her down naked on the trail and plucking tiny lily pads from every inch of her skin. It’s honestly a moment that really encapsulates parenting. We try so hard to keep our children on the straight and narrow but the decision to call out directions isn’t always the best course either so sometimes you have to watch your child go surprise swimming and just be there afterwards with the towel.
-Hannah, My Diaper Cake Blogger
We can all relate to watching something happen and feeling out of control. It’s such a part of the human experience to plan and coordinate and attempt to avoid disaster. We at My Diaper Cake want to know how other moms find ways to let go or control and how they make those choices. Are you the planning mom who has the bag full of spare pacifiers, changes of clothes, snacks and distractions or are you a bit more ‘handful of cheerios in the pocket’ come what may? We love moms who know what works for them.
Whatever your system we find most moms have a story or two about how their system failed them. The plan didn’t work or our kiddos threw a mysteriously sticky wrench in the gears. These stories even when they end in tears in the moment can be fun or helpful to share later on. It is so good to know that nobody is completely put together. It is also good for our kids to see things go wrong and even see their parents lose it a little. Knowing that mom or dad can cry over spilled milk and then still clean it up and give you a hug is a really healthy approach to emotions. When things go wrong for our mom blogger Hannah she tells her kids how she feels, sad, disappointed, angry. Then they get to tell her exactly how they feel without being told ‘it's fine’ or ‘let it go’. If you don’t hit or yell and you work through it, you get to feel those feelings and they get to be honored. After all if mom plunges face first into a pond with a bike between her knees she is definitely going to scream too, so the four year old can let it all out as long as they don’t blame any of the other stunned people in the vicinity and keep the profanity to the absolute minimum (calling the bike stupid was fair).
- When things go wrong at your house what works for you?
- Do you have a system with enough fail safes that you don’t have many issues?
- Have you found mental balance in ways that when things go wrong it doesn’t disrupt your day?
- Are you still looking for ways to handle those rough days with your young family?
In our community we love the idea of moms being able to talk about when things go wrong, to encourage each other and also find ways to help their kids have a healthy relationship with failure. We live in a culture where there is pressure to present the best of ourselves and our family. We all know how great it feels to see that that wonderful mom you wish you could emulate had a day where she too had to keep microwaving her morning coffee and never did find the source of that smell. It’s not schadenfreude, we want to feel connected and we want to know that just because it isn’t Instagram worthy doesn’t mean we aren’t living a beautiful, full, interesting life.
We see you succeeding parents, just like we are, with a little flare and a lot of love.