10 Major Mistakes I’ve Made this Month
& Why It’s OK
(From a Psychologist & Mom of 6)
It’s been heartwarming this week to see women congratulating women for “being real” in Facebook posts, and Moms tweeting to moms, “It’s ok! Hang in there! None of us is perfect!” But it also made me wonder why we need to say those things? Why don’t we just know that none of us is perfect? Why do we ever have to wonder if we are the only ones making mistakes, or be afraid to admit them?
Allow me to just admit: “I make mistakes all the time!” Being a psychologist doesn’t stop me from making them–I’m just trained to see them better! And being a mom of 6 doesn’t help–I’ve just got more kids with which to make my mistakes! Of course, I make plenty of little mistakes that seem huge (like eating too much dark chocolate to escape [see photo] or failing to see the bottle of glitter in my daughter’s pocket before doing laundry—we’re still finding green sparkles everywhere!). But it’s the big mistakes that seem little (until I realize what I’ve done!) that really matter, for they are my teachers. Acknowledging my mistakes makes me grow.
So I share with you 10 major mistakes I’ve made this month alone. I’m pretty sure I’ll make many of the same mistakes next month. But—and this is the part we all need to get—it’s ok. It’s part of being a parent, a partner, a human being. We all make mistakes. Progress comes in acknowledging and growing from them. Each month, I get a little bit better. And you can too.
10 Major Mistakes I’ve Made This Month
1) Letting Fatigue Rule my Mood: Yes, I can be cranky when I’m tired. But on those days when I’m just plain exhausted, it’s hard to even be nice. I’ve had a few irrational days this past month, including almost canceling our family trip to the lake at the last minute, almost missing my 20 year reunion because I “couldn’t handle” the 2-hour drive and late night, and having a mini meltdown when my husband decided to golf 3 days in a row instead of helping me get a break! Not my finest moments.
2) Doubting my Children: When two of mine begged to join a new sport, I told them, “You always say you want to do it, but then you want to quit! I don’t think you’ll stick with it.” But, they’ve proven me wrong. Wish I hadn’t doubted them.
3) Arguing with Dad in Front of the Kids: I just couldn’t stop myself! It wasn’t until the kids started asking, “Mom & Dad, will you please stop fighting?” that big time regret set in. I stopped, humbled myself, and apologized.
4) Failing to Acknowledge the Good in My Kids: I admit—sometimes I’m just so busy “keeping up” that I fail to see the good right in front of me. I was reminded of this by my oldest a few weeks ago, when, after telling him, “Your attitude was great all summer, but this week, it stinks!” he replied, “Well, if you thought I had a good attitude, why didn’t you tell me? It would be nice if you could tell me what I’m doing right once in a while!” Touché, son! He was completely right.
5) Blaming my Husband for how I Feel: I “let him have it” over a stupid thing that hurt my feelings, but I definitely felt worse after letting him have it. If I love him, then why would I want him to hurt too?
6) Zoning out from my Family with Social Media: Yep, guilty.
7) Complaining to my Family: Always telling my husband how little sleep I’ve had or telling my kids how much work I’ve had to do for them—it gets old! And not just for them—I’m sick of hearing myself!
8) Using TV as a Babysitter: More often than I care to admit.
9) Taking My Children’s Behavior Personally: Sometimes I can’t stop from engaging with them, and beneath it all is the belief: “They are reflecting poorly on me!” But it’s not about me—it’s about them—and if I could just stop being offended, I would be able to help them so much better.
10) Rejecting Love: This is a biggie and probably the one of which I’m most ashamed. It’s sadly ironic—the times I most need and desire love are the times I push others away. My husband gets the brunt of it—coming in for an “I’m sorry” hug after I’ve just let him have it for too much golf (again!), and what do I do? Push him away—literally. And I know I do it in subtler ways with my kids too. It wasn’t until my littlest gave me a big hug the other day and said, “Mom, you need a hug,” that I realized how much I need that love. “Yes, honey,” I replied, “You are right. Mommy really needs a hug”.
What do you think about this post? Does it make you respect me less to hear my mistakes? Do you feel inspired to admit some of your own? I’d really love a discussion on this one, so leave us a comment below!