Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Morphing into us?

This lovely post over at writing as jo(e) wrote got me thinking. I tend to agree with her, I really do. I can already see how much our not even 4 year old boys copy/mimic/mold themselves after us. It is as fascinating as it is complimentary as it is scary. I realize this does not apply to every single family situation, but just in general, for the moment, while they are preschoolers and not rebellious curfew breaking 16 year old boys (but mine will NEVER do that).

The boys have blessed me with a couple of good 'playing together' days, so I get to watch, listen, spy, analyze, and most of all, enjoy. I hear them say things we say to them all the time. Examples include: "This is your last warning", "Cause it's nice to do things for other people when they don't ask", "You forgot a very important word" (referring to 'please') and even "You're yelling too loud, that's your outside voice". (The last one being one of those phrases I vowed to never use as a parent, but geez my aching ears, it's just gotta be done.)

I would like to use myself for a moment. Am I like my mother? Absofuckinglutely. It almost scares me at times. Just way too many examples in how I like to carry myself, fill my time, commit to volunteering, the kids, the friends, neighbours, family, just about everyone but myself, all while I still do take time for me, even if just a little, it is for me. I believe she set a good example for me. I like to follow good examples, good idea, no? There are even times I cough, yes a cough, and I sound exactly like she did, when she coughed of course.

There are times I wonder how the hell she did all that she did, while taking such good care of us. I am currently swamped with volunteer work, charities, preschool, church, co-op playgroup, etc. all while working hard at maintaining and enjoying relationships with family, friends and neighbours. Am I exhausted? You bet. Would I change it? Well, perhaps I should, but not likely to happen any time soon.

I do admire her about one thing in particular. You see, my father also traveled a lot, just as my husband does. I don't ever recall hearing her complain. Never. I am always whining about the travel, the time he is away from us, how much more could get done if he was home. You know, in the same country perhaps? I will confess that being with the boys alone for so long is definitely getting much easier as they get older, actually fun at times. I think instead of missing his help with them so much, it is more just missing him.

Oops, tangent alert - how did I get here?

Rewind to purpose, intent of ramble. (easier to just keep going than try to edit)

I think what I am trying to say, is that I can only hope that DH and I can be the best models as we can to our children, so that they can hopefully aspire to mold their little clay-like selves into someone they like being.

Referring back to this post, the day after I made a conscious decision and was very public in this house about my decision to yell no more. You likely know, since none of you scream at your offspring like I did (note: past tense), it DOES make a difference. We have previously had 'low voice days' which work, but I am changing the tides, permanently. I like it so far.


Blogger BeachMama said...

Nancy, If you are just like your Mother, then it is a good thing. Your Mother obviously did a great job in raising you.

I hear my Mother's voice come out of my mouth quite often, and although I remember swearing I would be nothing like her when I grew up, it turns out that she had the right idea most of the time. And although there are a few things I will and do do differently, I don't mind being just like her most days.

Congrats on the not yelling, we have been doing well with that here too :)

6:57 AM EDT  
Blogger Silver Creek Mom said...

ME TOO! I swore I would not be like my MOM but OH BOY...I hear it now. I don't know how the hell she raised 5 kids with my dad hardly ever home. He worked construction and snow plow in the winter..gone at 4 a.m. back at 9 or 10 at night and in the winter he would be gone days.

I hate that I yell. I hate that I sometimes react without thinking. Although I find now that Nathan puts me on the spot and I stop and calm down. I'm getting better but some days I want to cry when I loose it.

Good for you for Changing there Nancy. I keep trying too.

8:10 AM EDT  
Blogger SRH said...

I hope I am not nearly as un-involved as my dad, although I do hear his voice sometimes...


9:07 AM EDT  
Blogger Marla said...

What a beautiful post, tangent and all. It sounds like your mother is a good example. I am so thoroughly different from my mother that other than constantly interrupting people, I find that she only comes out in me in odd situations.

That's sometimes why I feel parenthood is hard for me, because I don't have great models even though it seems they did a good job with me. My friends and husband use the word "despite" a lot when talking about me and my folks.

So thank you for making me think today - I am reminded that I am not only parenting Josie for her sake, but for her children's sake.

9:32 AM EDT  
Blogger DaniGirl said...

Wow, what a great post! Like you, I think I'm a lot like my mom, and I'd take that as a compliment from anyone who thought so, too.

In fact, what a lovely pre-Mother's Day post!

I'm working on the yelling too, and you're right, yelling just doesn't work. Now I just have to find a way to remember that when I'm at my worst and most likely to yell. It's hard, isn't it?

Marla, I had to comment on your last thought, about parenting for your child and for your future grandchildren. Yikes! A very good thought, but oh, the pressure!

11:56 AM EDT  
Blogger Northern Mom said...

The scary thing is that I've got this whole blog in my head about "Things I would never say to my kids" When I get 10 minutes I'll get to it.

As for the Being like us..Jo said somthing to me the other day and she looked at me and I kinda ignored her and she got right in my face and asked "Do you understand?"


12:49 PM EDT  
Blogger twinmomplusone said...

great post nancy and thanks for directing me to writing as jo(e), brilliant and fresh new way to look at parenting

its so true that these new human beings under our care are so influenced by what their parents say and believe in and we in turn have a lot of the values instilled in us by our own parents. I've seen mannerisms and sayings of mine or hubby or even my parents mimicked in my twins.

I've always said that us moms set the tone for our households and i try to remind myself of taht when things get out of control.

Yeah to you for the no screaming/yelling!

12:32 AM EDT  
Anonymous Carolann said...

Nancy, your mother was a remarkable woman...she would be soo proud of you and pleased as punch that she can still inspire you (daily).

10:14 PM EDT  

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