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Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Why I Suck as a Mom: It All Started with a Buzzing Toothbrush

My eldest child is 4-and- a-half. Let’s call her Api (because that’s her name). She has been refusing to eat my home cooked meals. Annoying? Yes. Very. Very annoying.

About 10 days ago, she stopped using the electric ‘buzzing’ toothbrush that she had begged for and I went out of my way to find. I was irritated but passive aggressively let it go – the whole, 'not worth an argument ' argument. Fine.

Then she ‘politely’ started to say things like “I don’t really like the food mummy.” My response, usually with a baby on one hip, a serving spoon in the other, and messy hair in need of brushing ranged from “There are starving children in the world”, “ agh (gasp) you used to be such a goo eater” to the guilt inducing “I worked so hard to prepare this for you.”

Api, being ever so eager to please fought through each bite and slowly (eventually) finished all of her meals, always being the last one at the table. I thought I had triumphed, won that battle. What great parenting skills right? My victory was short lived when at the weekend, she was in tears because her “tongue” hurt. Lo and behold, the child I thought was being ungrateful had lots and lots of little mouth ulcers bursting in her mouth and was too worried I’d be displeased. So she didn’t tell me.

Not only that, I have been making her have raw mango and raw tomatoes, which only irritates the ulcers further. Oh and the buzzing toothbrush hurts when it rubs against the ulcers. I should have been more observant and asked questions. But I wasn’t and didn’t. I feel really bad. She is probably going to hate me when she is older.

I’ve been trying to make it up to her (spoiling her). I could come up with loads of excuses for my failings but instead I am just going to slow down and breathe and try to cope with the guilt. 

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