Sorry, kids—I'll never be THAT mom

The Pinterest mom. The PTA mom. The mom who leaves notes in the lunch box, and always buys organic. Sorry, kids—that's just not me.

Photo: iStockphoto

After 11 years of parenting, I’ve become resigned to the fact that there are some types of moms that I will never be. As much as I may like to be that mom, I just don’t have it in me.

1. I will never be the mom who gets her kids to school early. Anyone who goes to my kids’ school will tell you that my kids and I sweep in last minute every day. We’re rarely so late that we have to get a late slip, but they go straight from my hug to their classroom, because the bell has already rung. Am I particularly proud of this? Not really. There’s certainly a part of me that would like to arrive early enough to talk to the other parents and watch the kids burn off some steam. But that will never be me. No matter how much time I think we have in the morning, we always run out. So I will never be that mom.

2. I will never be the mom who makes her kids a hot breakfast on a school day. Isn’t that what they invented cereal for?  Kudos to the moms that have that kind of energy in the morning—I just don’t. We do make them a hot supper. Does that count?

3. I will never be the mom who Pinterests. I will never have a Pinterest birthday party, or make a Pinterest Halloween costume. I will never use Pinterest to… Well, since I’ve never actually used Pinterest, I have no idea what other kinds of things I will never do. But trust me—I will never do them. I’m not crafty, or even all that creative. I have a hard time finding the patience to follow someone else’s directions.

4. I will never be the mom who leaves little love notes in her kids’ lunch bag every day. I think I’ve randomly thrown a note in once or twice. “Do you love me? Check Yes or No. Love Mom.” I’m kidding. I actually have tried writing them little notes…but it takes a few minutes so we ended up having to get a late slip (see #1, above), so that put the kibosh on that. So I guess I will never be that mom.

5. I will never be the mom who throws birthday parties for her kids every year. I’m the mom who tries to get her kids to agree to anything else other than a birthday party. Want to go to a water park instead of a party? A night at a hotel?  Skip rocks down by the river? Make bracelets together and sing Kumbaya? Anything. Pleeeease, children! Every three or four years, the guilt gets the best of me and I host a friend party for them, but otherwise, I do what I can to get out of it. Sorry, kids—I will never be that mom.

A woman on her phone with a bunch of angry emojis
Hate-following other moms turned me into a cyberbully

6. I will never be the mom whose kids are asleep shortly after bedtime. In our house, bedtime is around 8:30 or 9 p.m., and this mom goes off-duty directly after the lights go out. It takes a lot for me to go and make sure they’re still in bed and actually trying to sleep, because by that time of night, I’m done. I’ll often hear them chattering to each other, and while I’d prefer them to stop and go to sleep, I ultimately decide that hey, they’re in bed, and they aren’t bugging me for anything, so I’ll just leave well enough alone. Eventually they’ll pass out from sheer exhaustion. So the moms who can just say “Lights out!” to their kids and actually enjoy sleeping kids shortly afterwards? I applaud you on your follow through. My kids are still awake.

7. I will never be the PTA mom. Perhaps I will be a PTA mom one day. It is a worthy cause for sure. But there are only so many hours in a week, and the meetings start before I’m even home from work. I admire and appreciate the PTA mom…but I am not her.

 8. I will never be the mom who buys organic. While I try to stick to the outside aisles of the grocery store as much as possible, I refuse to buy organic produce. Fruits and veg are expensive enough as it is, and we buy a fair amount of produce. What’s more, my kids eat take-out sometimes. They eat canned food.  They’ve also been known to have frozen pre-made meals occasionally. Frankly, I just don’t worry too much about food. My kids are well-rounded eaters, so I say just pop a vitamin in them every now and again and call it done.

9. I will never be the mom who’s strict with the types of movies my kids watch. I’m pretty loosey-goosey about what I let the girls watch. Part of it is knowing my kids and what they are capable of handling. Plus, I figure we all have to be desensitized to mild violence eventually. Why not start them young?

Don’t get me wrong: I admire that mom very much. But I’ve accepted that I’ll never be her. And that’s OK. Because my kids love this mom. A mom who takes days off work to attend school field trips just to spend time with her kids. Who busts them out of school early for an impromptu date, when possible. Who often just sits with her kid as she works on her math work.  Who will gladly be a cheerleading base so her daughter can experience being a flier.  This mom has special reading dates with her kids. This mom knows exactly what to do and say to make her kids laugh.

I’m exactly the mom my kids want, so I’ve let go of the desire to be that mom.

This mom is enough.

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