Friday, August 17, 2012

Win/Loss Parenting

This is a post I wrote early this spring, but never published. I think it still fits my life!

Sometimes I feel like my life as a parent is like a win/fail balance sheet

Successfully bribed toddler with gum to pee on the potty again - win

Picked 15 pieces of gum off of my floors yesterday and one out of said toddler's hair today - fail

Fed the kids healthy, well-balanced meals and snacks today - win

Got started on school by 8:30 am and was mostly done by 10:30 am - win

Continually nagged and got impatient with middles who could not seem to settle into their bookwork - fail

Started making lapbooks with timelines for our Ancient Rome studies - win

Ignored baby's chatting with me while he ate so that I could finish making timeline - fail

Took out my frustration with some grown-up troubles by being angry when one of my middles broke a little mirror - major fail
(my views on spills and accidental broken items is usually pretty philosophical. "Let's clean that up together...")

Possibly having to disappoint my kids and myself by not being able to afford to do something this week that we have been looking forward to for a month - fail

Watching my lovely son reading while doing the dishes and being able to appreciate his beauty, his love of reading and learning, and his multi-tasking abilities, rather than nagging him - win

Not being able to take the kids to the gym as planned - fail

Made sure that I sang lullabies to my sweethearts at the end of the day rather than hiding in my room - win

Sometimes my mind is filled with my failures and my heart is heavy, and then I have to remind myself that I am human and I fail, but God is greater than all my shortcomings. He loves me and my children more than I could fathom. And he covers over my mistakes with his love. I am blessed beyond measure.


  1. I understand this completely. Yesterday there were lots of little wins, followed by a major fail. I can only seem to think about that, though.

  2. I so get this - and where you're coming from. But, I think you're being a little hard on yourself too :) I have no idea how you do everything you do. You're pretty awesome and the stuff you lists as fails just seem kind of part of being a mom.

  3. When you get to the parenting stage where they are all mostly adults like I am you can see that even the failures were wins. Everybody learned something. It is the love that shines through...I once had one of those days filled with missteps and I was hiding in my room when my two oldest brought me a glass of water and some Kleenex. They told me to blow my nose and take a drink and that I would feel better. They had somewhere learned compassion and empathy and that perfection is not the goal. I figured maybe I had taught them that and then I cried tears of gratitude.
    So you know what I did? I blew my nose, I took a drink and by golly I felt better.
    YOu are doing a great job Mama. They are loved and they know it...xox,, E