I was a good mom today, if I do say so myself. This is worth mentioning because lately I honestly have not been.
It's winter up here in the godforsaken North and that really brings out the worst in me. I abhor cold. I loathe cold. I can't think of a word vile enough to express my dislike of cold. Cold makes my bones hurt. Cold makes me tired. Cold makes me a hateful bitch. I hate having to wear bulky layers of clothes. I hate wet socks and snowsuits and toddlers screaming because their fingers are cold and they won't keep their damned mittens on. I hate the pissy grey sunshine. I hate the wind whistling through the cracks in my house. I hate being afraid to drive. I hate getting out of my warm bed in the mornings so much that my kid is late for school pretty much every single day. I hate walking the dog. I hate the noisy squirrels living in my roof, I hate the dead, black skeletal trees. I hate the filthy slushy mud. I hate the dark that seems to fall just after noon. I hate scraping ice off of my car, but not as much as I hate dragging a sled or wrestling a stroller over snowbanks or carrying a 30 pound child in 50 pounds worth of outerwear or trying to coax that same child to please for the love of god walk faster, and straighter, and without stopping to climb every mound and taste every clump so that we can get wherever the hell we're going and get inside again. I hate lying awake all night because my feet are frozen and I can't sleep until they thaw out and they won't thaw out for hours.
I remember being excited about snow when I was a kid. I know I used to have fun building snowmen and forts and going tobogganning, but there is not a single trace of those feelings left. I have played outside with my children exactly 3 times since November. Instead I stay inside and lay on the couch drifting in and out of sleep all day. I let my kids watch entirely too much television and I yell at them constantly to be quiet, or calm down, or go play somewhere else, or stop making a mess, or quit bugging the dog, or stop fighting, or close the frigging door, or get their own damn juice or...
But today I was good. Today we made crafts together (paper snowflakes of all things) and I pulled my girls around the living room by the hands while they each stood on one roller skate. I got 7 loads of laundry done and cleaned the floor and did 2 loads of dishes and still had time to build a stable out of Mega Blocks and read a story and tickle them until they turned purple. I sent them out to play in the yard and watched them having fun through the window. Maybe tomorrow I'll go out with them. I didn't yell or order a single time-out. I laughed and I smiled and I stayed awake all day long.
See, my eldest daughter is 6 now and somehow she's become literate. She loves to read and write all the time and the phrase she writes most often is "I love mom." I want to deserve that. I want her to remember a mom who played with her and listened to her and enjoyed spending time with her instead of a mom who yelled and bitched and was lazy as hell. So I'm trying. I have to work hard at it, because some days it seems as though every single thing that child does or says is calculated specifically to annoy the living crap out of me. But I am trying, and I was good today.