the biggest burden of parenthood.

Mountains Beyond Mountains The other night, I was reading the book Mountains Beyond Mountains, a reccomendation from Dooce, when I came across this paragraph:

    “I think there’s a point where you realize the world has just been revealed to you. It’s like realizing your parents are both good and bad. It’s sort of, Oh no, things will never be quite the same again.”

After I read it, I immediately went back and read it again. Frown lines began to wear themselves into my brow. I couldn’t move past those words. What about them had struck me as so monumental?

I sat there on the couch in the dimly lit room, thinking. And, finally, I put my finger on it. I don’t ever want my child to realize my bad. I don’t ever want to be the reason for her eye roll. I don’t ever want her to say, “My mother can be so __fill in the negative attribute__.” I don’t want her to remember me saying things like, “I almost just hit you for that,” a flippant remark I made this evening, after she threw her cup at me, after she threw my homemade meatball on the floor. I don’t want her to see me as impatient or unloving. I don’t ever want to be too out of touch, too old, too crazy.

I only want her to see my good. I want my child to look upon me with fondness. I want to be the mother whom all of her friends adore. Who is kind and calm, rational and understanding, put together and fun, and, most of all, happy. I want her to know the joy I take in parenting her, in teaching her, in reading to her, in laughing with her. I want her to see the love and respect I have for my husband, because it’s important she knows that our marriage is a good one. I want her to know that I’m interested, that I’ve been there, that I care.

I want to be the person you’re thinking of right now. The one you admire most for her realness, her radiating love and light.

I want to be my child’s role model.

This feels like biggest burden parenthood has laid on my shoulders, yet.


  1. I tell my children regularly I’m going to knock them out and they and their friends think I’m the best mom out of our circle, so I think you’re good 😉 Seriously, I’ve found the best mom’s are the most guilt ridden ones because we think about every word, action, look we dole out. But trust me, we judge ourselves much harsher than our children do! (Spoken by the mom of a teenager and almost teenager who has regular talks with them in regards to parenting)

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