Saturday, June 4, 2011

Hi! I'm the Mom! I Panic!

I am interrupting my question-answering to write a brief post concerning a particular complex from which I apparently suffer:

Mom Panic.

Let me rewind. Friday was a rough day. I had a photo shoot fall through, totally my fault, and it made me sick to think I had disappointed a potential client. My plans for the day included going to the zoo with some friends and I was happy to go hang out, but the day had already started out on a sour note and I am the kind of person who holds onto things longer than I should. Naturally, the day was destined for ruin. As we perused our way through the lions and bears, the hot Oklahoma sun beating on our shoulders, I started to get cranky. Naomi slept soundly in the stroller but Cub was on the ornery side, lagging and taking his time (not) obeying. My patience was short and I found myself getting snippy. Towards the end of our zoo excursion, my friends suggested going to lunch. Knowing I was cranky and the kids were on the brink of nap time, thusly making them a bit cranky, I wasn't so sure that going to lunch would go over well.


I didn't want to be that Mom.

You know. The Mom who never does anything spontaneous? The NOT FUN Mom?

So, we went to lunch.

The restaurant is one of my favorites in town, but it doesn't have a play place, which means the kiddos would have to sit and be good (eek). While I was happy to devour some fish tacos, I was not so happy to have to police my one year old and two year old while we ate. I felt sorry for myself. I had a bad attitude.

I was SNIPPY. I was HUFFY. I was worried about the kids' naps, worried about getting both of them fed, worried about the pile of tortilla chips and quesadilla pieces forming under the table, worried about the people next to us having to listen to my kids whine, worried, worried, worried. At one point, my friend asked me if I was okay, and it was then that I realized my worry and panic was very obvious to the rest of the group. And then I was embarrassed. Sure, I had chosen the "fun mom" route, but I was anything but fun. Naomi started losing it halfway through the meal, so we ended up leaving early. Now I felt like I had let everybody down and I wanted to just go home and sulk.

I had allowed extenuating circumstances to set the tone for my day and while I do find that to be somewhat understandable, I hated how it brought out the "panic-y mom" in me. The Mom who freaks out in public places. When we only had one kid, going out was no problem. Now, we rarely go out to eat, simply because eating out with two toddlers takes a lot of work and it's easier to eat at home. So, sure, maybe I had the right to be slightly cautious at the thought of eating out, but the panic? It seemed a little unnecessary.

So, I'm just wondering--do any other Moms out there panic about these kinds of things? Do you ever worry that your kids are upsetting everyone around you and you get huffy and snippy even if everything is probably fine?

Or am I really, really weird?

That's all. Have a lovely weekend, friends.


  1. This is interesting... I felt totally like you described with one kid. We rarely went out to dinner because it always made me panic (food everywhere, having to sit still, whining, etc.) With 2 kids, we've gone out to eat a ton. I think it's so much easier with two kids. They entertain each other, so they don't get bored. We don't have to worry about them as much. It's more relaxing. But (BIG BUT), I always have my purse stocked with distractions (crayons, toys, cups, etc.) just in case. That helps tremendously.

    Don't worry, I'm SURE you are not alone. We all have our snippy moments and 'no fun mom' moments too. It sounds like you just had a bad day...we all have them. Hang in there!!

  2. Oh girl...yes yes YES! I don't even know what else to say other than YES I have been there, and no I don't have the cure! Although I have gotten better about remembering that things are always bigger in my head than they are to other people. But you're right, when we don't control the battle in our heads first, then we often create a situation that is noticeable to others (which just makes the head battle worse in a whole other way!)

    I'm also learning that there is such a balance between the being the fun/spontaneous mom and the practical/routine-following mom! Sometimes it's worth it, sometimes it isn't, and I'm getting better at choosing when I need to be which. (Although it always kills me a bit when I have to choose the practical/routine role!)

    You're a great mom, Katie, panicked or not!

  3. I only have one child, but you might as well have been talking about me. I TOTALLY get that way sometimes. I'm starting to get a lot better about readying my daughter's emotions and temperament at the moment to see if it would be a good idea to do something fun or if it's just better to go home. You are not alone.

  4. You are NOT weird. Somewhere there must exist a balance between Fun Mom and Panic Mom...if you find it, let me know. ;) You do such a great job of's okay if you had a off day. I consider you a FUN Mom!! :)

  5. I don't have kids, but I just wanted to say that I love your honesty and how real you are. It's inspiring :)

  6. Yes, but I've always called it "Mom Sweat." ;) Happened to me just this last weekend too. The Oklahoma heat definitely doesn't help matters! But don't worry, it happens, oh and you're one of the best mothers I know!