When we fall down.

So mommas, it will be real today. No funny business. Sorry.

The other day, my son and I got in an argument. A straight-up, no chaser, fight. With a seven year old.

Because fighting with a seven year old is what a forty six year old women chose to do that day. Because the seven year old didn’t really chose it – he doesn’t have the emotional synapses yet to say, “Hey. Yea. I am choosing this.” Most of his stuff is still kinda… on automatic. Like, his synapses say, “Hey. SQUIRREL.” And we’re done.


What happened was, the kid acted like a sullen kid. And misbehaved. And then, I took the reins and took OFF on making sure he knew it.

There are times when my mothering goes astray. And it just kicks the sides of that old, dead horse and tries to run off with it. Which is a terrible metaphor but I was trying to go with the “reins” thing. Which kinda means I want you to visualize me riding a dead horse. Off a cliff. Of bad mothering.

Good lord I hope this will make some sort of sense.

If you are still with me, picture me on that poor dead horse, galloping off, on a road towards my cliff. And there’s a sign by the side of the road that says, “CAUTION. STOP HERE. BIG HUGE DROP OFF COMING. TURN THE HECK AROUND.”

Perhaps I should name the cliff. The Cliffs of Insanity.

Or, perhaps:

The Cliffs of I Must Be Right.

I think the Cliffs of Insanity sounds a bit more catchy, but Princess Bride got to it before me.


Oh. My friends. His face. After all the I-Must-Be-Right-ing and lecturing and trying to make my POINT because it is so important, his little face. It just crumpled in on itself. And he told me,

“I’m just a bad kid.”

And that’s just the awfulest thing. It’s just not not the truth.

It’s just Satan. With my help. And I am so sorry. I had to tell you because I thought, you know? I am so funny and this is so NOT and you need to know. I just so screwed up.

We all screw up. We cannot help it. It’s the tangle of motherhood. We are participating in a daily battle and sometimes I get too involved in winning MY side. When, really, the winning is not the point.

The point is that I watched his shoulders sag, and he said what he did, and then I went over to him, picked him up and put him on my lap like he was my baby, because he is. And I stroked his cheek and I said,

“You are my child. I love you more than I love my life. And you are a child of God. And He doesn’t make anything bad.”

I sat and rocked him. And kissed his cheek and wiped the tears and said, “I am sorry. I love you. You got that?” He nodded. And asked me to play Yahtzee.

And we got through that mess. And probably there will be another one coming soon, because motherhood. Kids. You know.

I wanted to share because I wondered if you needed to know – we all mess up. And then we all can say sorry and go play Yahtzee and eat popcorn and hug on each other. Because, motherhood and kids.

Can I hear an amen? Thank goodness I can. It’s the only thing that keeps me afloat, y’all.


  1. Be glad you got to rock and calm down. I have custody of my 8 yr old grandson who has PTSD, ADHD and Autisim. When he “Is a bad kid” he will say it repeatedly for an hour – during this time YOU DO NOT TOUCH HIM!! The emotional side of his beautiful little brain takes over the whole thing and I have to “ride it out” (sound familiar – lol). I got luck 2 years ago was a really bad year for all of us (ck my blog for more details), but I met a great therapist that told me about the “Whole Brain Child” books – what a Godsend!! Once I understood where he was coming from, it was so much easier to deal. He will NEVER be like other kids, but then they are all unique. He just needs clear boundries, and a ton of patience (which some days I am in short supply – ha ha) Oh – AND A WHOLE LOT OF HUMOR!!! Just because it gets me through it all! Hang in there Momsie!!

  2. Oh S$@+%#. thank you so much for sharing this- i was busting my own 7 year old son just the other night in my ” perfection is the only way” ad nauseum and he said mom sometimes i am just bad. And i have bad behaviour. And i am mean. And i saw shoulders just fall inward just like your little guy, i saw the weight of my dissapproval crushing his tiny child heart. And then a piece of me died too i think.

    We all fall, we all do. Amd thats what i told him too, and i told him i was sorry for busting him like a meanie butt and then we also went and made popcorn and ate too many cookies. Amd its all okay. We are all okay.

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