You’ll never know how much you saved me today. You’ll never know the power of your words.

You see, yesterday and the day before, I was a really bad mom. I was impatient. I yelled. I was sarcastic. I may have even been mean. I was stressed and grumpy and tired and Sick. Of. It. All.

I had to go shoe shopping and my kids act like Goldilocks in every shoe store. Too tight, too big… when will something be JUST RIGHT?

One of them told me she was “over” summer and ready to go back to school. What? I act like a cruise director all summer long and you are over it?  I wished more homework on that child during the first week than her little hand could handle.

I cried. I laid in my bed both nights and cried.

I cried because Camryn’s REALLY Autistic this week. Her ears are like that of a dolphin. She is crying incessantly because everything is hurting her ears.  She is also terrified that it MAY rain. This is new. She perseverates about the dark clouds or over the mention of an impending storm.  I just couldn’t do Autism this week.

I cried because two summers ago when Brynlee would ask to do a craft, play a game or play Barbies while Aubrey and Courtney were napping, I would sometimes say no because I “needed” to get other things done. Now when I ask her to do a craft or play a game she sometimes says no. Did the no hurt her as much as it hurt me when she said it this week?

The past two mornings, I wrote in my prayer journal and begged Jesus to make this easier. Why is parenting so hard? What am I doing wrong? Help me. Where are you?

And then, in the check out line at Target, your words became more powerful than the replay tapes in my mind. You turned around, looked at me and spoke such kind words to me. You told me that you heard me with my girls throughout Target and every time you heard us, you would smile. You told me that you loved how patient I was, how nice they were to each other and how we all spoke so respectfully to one another. You complemented how much I talk to them and how much we laugh.

I laughed. I told you I was thankful that you didn’t meet me yesterday.

But I got in the car and cried. Jesus answered my prayers. I needed someone to speak life into me. This is a tough job and today I received a good evaluation from you and my bratty kids were there to witness just how awesome we are doing as a family during our two hour tour of Target. Two hours because Camryn makes us walk up and down Every. Freaking. Aisle.

Maybe a stranger’s words can erase some of my mistakes.

I go through phases where I attack myself as a Mom. I doubt myself; I question myself; I compare myself.

You were nicer to me than I was being to me.

Some days are hard. Some days I am exhausted. Today though, you helped me to look at things from a much softer angle. As a mom, I need to be easier on myself. I am doing the best job I can. I was picked to parent four crazy, loud, spicy, fun and FULL of ideas and opinions girls.

My mom friend in Target thinks I was made for the job. I need to start thinking that too.

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27 Comments

  1. Janice on August 31, 2017 at 11:48 pm

    I completely agree with that Target mom! You are refreshing to be around and your family is a testament to just what outstanding parents you are… even on those unpolished days that we ALL have. Aways so eloquently written Kristi!



  2. Cheryl Emerson on September 1, 2017 at 2:46 am

    You are an aweso.me Mom. Remember that You are also human. We make mistake and,we get angry. In the end we love our children and would walk to the end of the earth to keep them safe. You were given an e,tra challenge ecause God knew Camyrn needed you !



  3. Bobbi Smisko on September 1, 2017 at 4:53 am

    Such good writing Kristi! Thank you for sharing this part of your life.



  4. Shana on September 1, 2017 at 6:40 am

    You are an amazing mom…one of the best I’ve ever had the pleasure of getting to know. I miss you all every day ❤️.



  5. St on September 1, 2017 at 6:50 am

    ❤️



  6. Ruth Clow on September 1, 2017 at 7:01 am

    I’ll bet your transparent well-expressed piece here will comfort a lot of stressed-out moms. You are a blessing!



  7. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 7:03 am

    Thanks Ruth!



  8. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 7:04 am

    We miss you too!



  9. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 7:04 am

    Thanks!



  10. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 7:05 am

    Oh the mistakes… 😀 We do love them though!!



  11. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 7:06 am

    Thanks, Janice. I really appreciate it!!



  12. Gail on September 1, 2017 at 7:30 am

    Kristi,
    I am certain you are an AWESOME mom. I know your wonderful mom taught you well. We all have days in which we feel like the worst mom ever. When my girls were younger, I would lay in bed at night and think of all the things throughout the day and how I could have handled them differently (or better). Give yourself a break… you’re doing great. I hope your Target friend made you realize that you are NEVER a really bad mom… you’re just hard on yourself. And, praise God for answered prayers!



  13. Kellyann Mitchell on September 1, 2017 at 8:05 am

    Oh Kristi, as always thank you for your honesty. I don’t know why as moms we are so hard on ourselves but I am so grateful that you found the TRUE words of a stranger to be just what you needed to hear. Keep fighting’ the good fight girl, b/c you’re one of the good ones!



  14. Cecelia Lehman on September 1, 2017 at 11:21 am

    Kristi,
    Every mom has self doubts. If we didn’t we wouldn’t be good mom’s. We need to feel there is room for improvement so that we can find the improvements. I know I did OK when I see my children sing the same songs to thier children, play the same games, and talk to them in the same way I did. It warms my heart to see my grandchildren becoming these awesome little people. You are doing great. God has blessed those 4 little girls with you and David!
    Love, Aunt Celi



  15. Jamie on September 1, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    So well written… and yes we all have those days were we aren’t good moms! and I think if someone says they don’t- they are lying 🙂 but we rally, take a deep breath and keep going. You are a great mom, please give yourself more credit!!



  16. Susan Storti on September 1, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    Kristi, I think that woman was actually an angel sent to bless you with the affirming words of Jesus!!
    Oh how He loves us so unconditionally!! Love your transparency….



  17. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    I thought the same thing!!



  18. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    Thanks!!



  19. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 5:38 pm

    ❤️



  20. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    Thanks!! ❤️



  21. Kristi on September 1, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    Oh the laying in bed at night!! 😀 I did learn from a gem!



  22. Cyndy on October 5, 2017 at 9:58 pm

    That was beautiful. Reading it brought me to tears! Love you sister and your amazing parenting skills!



  23. Kristi on October 16, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    Amazing parenting skills… stop that nonsense!! ❤️❤️



  24. Karyn flocco on October 19, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    “I just couldn’t do autism today” . Thank you for your candor, your honesty, and ur humor. I love reading about your awesome family. As a teacher of middle school kiddos with autism, I feel so fortunate that I get to learn from these awesome kids, but also appreciate they make me a better human everyday. Warrior parents like you are my hero.



  25. Kristi on October 20, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    Teachers of kids with Autism are hero’s!! Thanks for all you do!



  26. Megan on October 20, 2017 at 8:24 pm

    I am still wiping the tears as this is something I can so relate too. Thank you for being so transparent, real, lovely, and encouraging. You melted my heart with your delivery. Xo



  27. Kristi on October 20, 2017 at 10:20 pm

    Thanks!! She was what I needed that day.



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