|Posted by Kirstin Parkin on March 2, 2015 at 8:40 PM|
I’m nursing yet another battle wound that I received simply because I’m your mother.
Miss M smashed me in the mouth with a toy while we were all in the bath tub together. It wasn’t intentional, but my tooth went through my lip and instantly my mouth was filled with blood. Miss B was mortified because I looked like I came straight from a horror film. You know when your teeth are coated in blood and your whole mouth looks like your about to die? That was how I looked to my three year old. Miss B was terrified and very mad at her sister for hurting her mommy. Miss M just laughed.
So I got to rock a fat split lip for three days, and even now on day four, its sore. And I’m reminded of how much abuse I take from you girls. I have had scabs on my face from your little finger nails gouging my skin, I’ve chosen wedding outfits based on what covers the teeth mark bruises on my arms. You have both ripped out clumps of may hair on numerous occasions. I am routinely kicked, jumped on, head butted and scratched. I’m surprised I still have my hearing left after the glass shattering screams that have blasted my ears. That is the stuff that people don’t tell you about parenting. How these little beings that you love more than anything in the world will lash out and hurt you when they’re really mad. Or bored. Or frustrated. Or sad. Or hungry. Or tired. Or just totally by accident.
I’m not sure if all kids lash out like mine do, but be rest assured that I certainly don’t tolerate it. While writing this, Miss M got a time out for pulling out a handful of her sisters hair.
That stuff doesn’t fly with me but it happens whether I allow it or not.
Thanks to these tantrums, I’ve had to reconsider my whole parenting philosophy because what I was doing wasn’t working. When Miss B was about 12 months old, she started biting me. Breastfeeding bites are one of the worst things ever. EVER. Same with the soft skin of your inner arm or when they bite down on your finger when you try to sweep a choking hazard out of their mouth and they wont let go. I tried everything to stop her biting, but NOTHING worked. Until I bit her back.
For the record, I DIDN’T WANT TO DO IT, but apparently my kids learn by consequence because once she experienced the pain of being bitten, she stopped. It was a friggin miracle.
Now when she lashes out at me, all I need to say is ‘do you want me to do it to you?’ because she knows I will. We don’t spank in our house, but I reserve the right to use self defence. Judge me if you want, but I have slapped my kids back when they hit me and let me tell you, they hate it.
I have never spanked as punishment, but I have to educate my kids on consequences and remind them that their mommy is a person and has feelings too. My husband and I decided to teach them that if they hit someone, they will likely get hit back. It’s a good life lesson in my opinion. I am working on teaching them not to hit in the first place, but that is part of the evolution of education, and a lesson that will continue to be taught until it is learned.
My intention in writing this, isn’t to make my kids to feel guilty one day when they read this, or for the world to think that I’m complaining about my spirited daughters, because I don’t mean to do those things.
I can (and will) write one day about the incredibly sweet, kind things that fill motherhood too, like having your daughter play with your hair, or give you a big hug when her sister hurts me, or asking me how my day was. There are so many examples of kindness in our kids, and even though this blog post is about the painful side of parenting, I know I’m not alone in the trenches. I know I’m not the only one with battle wounds. And I know I’m not the only one who wouldn’t trade it for the world.