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When You’re the Worst Mom Ever

Kathryn Thompson

There are days when I’m not the greatest mom, at least not on paper.  Now, I’m not necessarily a bad mom on these days but I sure look less than stellar.  These are the days when my kids tell their friends that I yell at them ALL the time when I only yell at them one or two of the times.  These are the days when they somehow slip past my watchful eye and end up at church wearing muddy tennis shoes with their baptism dress or to a formal occasion wearing a dress shirt, tie and sweatpants.  These are the days when they say I never read to them or tell their teacher I don’t feed them breakfast.  I had one of these days last week.

I’d been up late the night before so when Wanda went down for her nap, I went down with her.  I turned off the ringers on all the phones because there was only an hour and a half until Magoo got home from kindergarten and I wanted the nap to count.  I don’t nap often and when I do, I rarely turn the ringers off.  But this day, I was exhausted.

With ten minutes left in my nap, I heard a loud knock at the door.  I ignored it.  Whenever I get up from a nap to answer the door, I find a package left on the doorstep and I regret having missed out on my sleep.  The knock came again, only louder.  On the third insistent knock, I made my way downstairs to see who was so desperate to see me.  It was a friend of mine who Magoo’s school office staff had asked to come and find me.  He was barfy sick and they’d been calling me for the last hour.

They didn’t want to send him home on the bus in his condition so he was sitting in the health room, miserable, waiting for me.  All of my emergency contacts were either not answering or their numbers had been disconnected.  So I raced to change out of my pajamas, grabbed the baby in her ratty play clothes and sleep-disheveled hair, and headed to the school, unshowered and un-made-up.

I explained to the staff that I hadn’t heard their calls because I’d been napping with the ringer off.  I think they were very impressed by my stay-at-home mom attentiveness to my children's needs.  I pulled my baseball cap further down on my nappy hair.  My friend in the office said Magoo might just be hungry since he’d told his teacher that I hadn’t fed him breakfast that morning.  Of course I’d fed him breakfast that morning.  In fact, I’d made him a spinach smoothie for variety and extra nutrition but he didn’t count it as breakfast because it was drinkable. 

So I took my sick boy and my poor hygiene and headed home, where Magoo told me about how they’d been working on a clay project at school that day.  The CLAY PROJECT!  I was supposed to have sent in money for the clay project.  I’d even gotten a reminder notice from the teacher saying he could not participate if I didn’t send in money.  And I’d forgotten.  And she’d let him participate anyway because she is simply awesome like that.

His teacher?  Awesome.  Me?  I have my moments.

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