Last week there was one day in particular that was fairly busy. My preschool aged son had a field trip. I was planning to go along since it wasn’t too far, it was right by my husbands work, and I could take some of the older kids, and drop the little girls off with my husband during his lunch break. However, the field trip was at a different time than preschool normally was. I’d been forgetting about it off and on, and was very concentrated that morning about remembering the field trip.
I was getting my 4 younger kids loaded up into the car to pick up my kindergartner, when I noticed I had a next a message from my friend. It was a picture of my kindergartner receiving a little award. You see, I’d been so concentrated on remembering about my preschoolers field trip …. that I’d totally forgotten about this big deal of a day for my kindergartner. It was Author’s Day. They had worked so so hard on these poems (she wrote like 6 poems, and drew pictures for each one of them, and it was bound into a book, and everything!), and they were having the parents come, and their child would read their book to them, and then they’d kind of make their way around the room listening to other kids. When I realized that I’d totally forgotten about it, I stopped shuffling kids to their seats. I stopped trying to get buckles done up, and I just cried. I knew that I had totally missed a very important moment for my kindergartner. I got myself back together enough to finishing loading everyone in the car, and drove to pick her up.
When she came out of school, I put my arm around her and apologized, and cried. She cried, and asked why I wasn’t there, she was waiting for me to come. What happened? I told her the truth. I told her that I had forgotten about it because I was so concerned about missing the field trip (that she was going to come on with us, so she knew about the time difference and such), that I had just totally forgotten.
Through out the day, she would ask me again several times, “Why did you forget to come?” I just had to reply back with telling her it was an accident, and reminded her that sometimes she forgets things too. However, I made a deal with her. While our family was gathered together later that evening, we would have a special poetry reading by her. I promised we’d all listen to her and that it’d be super special for her. I knew that since she was #2, of 6 young kids … it wasn’t going to happen so nicely. Lol. I also decided to take her out on special little date. She didn’t have homework, and I knew she needed a little extra love that day.
So why tell this story? As I was crying my tears, and waiting for my kindergartner to come out of school, I realized something. I felt like such an awful mother. I had missed this big deal of a day for her, and just felt so so so bad (and I still do). However, in the moment, I realized that I wasn’t a bad mother at all! I was sincerely sad that I had missed this day. I wanted so badly to be there for her, and mad a mistake. I wasn’t trying to be mean, and I didn’t miss it on purpose and make up and excuse. I feel like because I wanted to be there for her and was so sorry that I had spaced it, that is the part of me that didn’t make me an awful mother that day. It meant that I cared about her, and what she cares about and the hard work that she puts into the things she cares about.
I love the quote at the top of the post. I think it’s perfect for this situation I had made a mistake, and I knew that making excuses over and over was not going to be okay. My daughters feelings were far too important, and my relationship with her was far too important to lie, or make excuses. In any situation we need to remember that! People are ALWAYS more important than things or problems.
I hope next time you’re not feeling up to par as a mom, you’ll remember that too. As long as you care and are trying, you have no failed, you are not failing. Do your best, and it is enough. It doesn’t mean that you or I will be the perfect parent for our children. It means that we’re doing out best to be the best for them, and as long as they see and know that, and we’re honest about our mistakes to them, and try to fix them, then they will see that we love them, care, and are trying to learn just like they are. That is what I learned from the day of the missed poem.