On one hand I'm supposed to be unwavering and consistent.
On the other hand I'm supposed to be flexible and understanding.
On another hand(and where is that coming from?) I'm supposed to be compassionate.
On a fourth hand I'm supposed to not worry if my kid is happy or not because they need grit to survive.
On yet another hand I'm supposed to relax and realize that ultimately everything will be fine.
On I don't know which hand I'm supposed to attend to issues immediately or else the future will be worse.
On what can only be defined as my squid hand I need to be patient because, developmentally, certain things need to catch up before they can take hold, and progress is sometimes microscopically impossible to see.
Until finally all these hands have pushed and pulled me into a claustrophobic corner where I do not trust a single instinct I have. Where I believe that every move I make is the wrong one. And waiting in the wings of this freak show are the voices of my self-appointed critics; my husband and the therapist and the teachers and administrators at school, and the loudest critic of them all-myself.
So get over it Mary. Buck up. It's just parenting, it's not rocket science. You're right, it's not. It's so much harder than rocket science. At least with science there are absolutes, there are facts and things can be proven or disproven. But with parenting, no two kids are alike, no two days are alike, no two moments are alike. The only consistency is the inconsistency of human nature. And then...and then, add the variable of emotion and rocket science looks like the ABC's in comparison. Sure, Malcolm Gladwell, go ahead and tell me about the science of emotions. Publish another slick white covered book with a kicky title that will help me negotiate a moment made up of love, disappointment, fear, frustration, anger and shame. Unravel that riddle for me. On the eighth hand, though, don't, because one more theory on parenting may just send me over my own personal tipping point.
I have no words of wisdom, no simple discovery, no epiphany for this. I am simply declaring that this thing we chose to do, parenting, is inexplicably hard. I know hard is good. It teaches us to cope. It helps us survive. It makes us appreciate life in a new way. But OMFG would just a little more easy really be the end of the world?
Here endeth the whining. I have to go do some ball-busting now.
Whiny Little Baby out.