I’m one of those people, the ones who never wanted kids ever. Then I had one anyway. I fell in love immediately, and she is the greatest thing I’ve ever experienced in life, hands down. However, this doesn’t change the type of person I am. I’m still selfish, slightly self absorbed, impatient, an overachiever and my mind is almost never ever in the moment. These things, I have grown to believe over time are what make me who I am. I find them as traits, as quirky little Gabi things, and refuse to see them as downsides to my character. Unfortunately, these things that make me an awesomely unique person are the same traits that make being a mom so incredibly hard.
I absolutely do not love my daughter less than any other mother out there. But I suck at some aspects of momming. I suck at keeping homework done, I am horrible reinforcing listening skills and following direction, mostly because I’m distracted myself a majority of the time. How do I teach a child to follow direction, pay attention and live in the moment, when I accidentally leave the car on when I’m shopping and put raw chicken into the pantry instead of the fridge?
How do I expect her to be the person I cannot be? It took seven years of marriage for my husband to even start understanding who I am, and to not take my inability to focus personally, to feel like I wasn’t disinterested in him. I sat down this morning, at my first parent-teacher conference, to discuss my amazing daughter’s struggles with first grade. This is her first year at a Montessori school, and she’s an only child, so I don’t expect perfection in any way. However, despite knowing my own attention deficit issues as well as the same sort of issues on her father’s side of the family, I found myself struggling to fully accept her teacher’s request that I get my daughter tested for ADHD.
I knew it. I’ve known it since she was two. I have. Really. But I hate medications. I hate forcing them on children who don’t have a choice, I hate suppressing certain aspects of her beautiful mind and I hate the idea of interfering with her amazing personality. And I’ve tried everything from focus exercises to removing gluten and certain dyes from her diet to natural oils. And now I’m listening to a teacher explain all of the same issues I already deal with at home with her behavior and attention span. But for some reason, it’s so much harder now. Now that it’s coming from outside of my home, I finally need to address it. Because me hating pills shouldn’t be reason enough for me to allow my daughter or her education to suffer.
I’ll be updating her at home learning plan, attempting to do what I can to help, and I will fight with every bit of me for my daughter. But I’m really struggling with myself and with the fact other people see imperfections in her. She is so smart. So, so smart. But as a mom, I will need to do what is truly best for my child, no matter my personal opinions. Momming, is hard. Really hard sometimes.