I think in order for you to understand that it’s really okay to make mistakes, we just have to say what Lisa Bonet used to say on the Cosby Show … ”mmmm my bad.” It’s basically saying, “yeah, and so what … I made a mistake.” Guess what, parenting is not a perfect science. We are human beings and we make mistakes. How you choose to deal with that mistake and present it to your kids is up to you. My theory is they need to know we are not the perfect beings we think they are, and owning up to that is healthy.
Let’s take for example the summer I had Gianmarco. He was born in June, and was my paramount concern, on top of planning a family vacation to California when he was eight weeks. I thought I had it all going on: get up, feed the baby, shower, feed the baby, put on some make up, feed the baby, drop the girls at theater camp, feed the baby, take Albert to sports camp, feed the baby ... etc. I think you get the picture.
We sat down for dinner, about 6:00, and the phone rings. “Hi Linda, are you picking up Albert from camp.” I was like, “Albert, who?” Then I realized ... I forgot my kid at camp!!! Holy ^%&$! I had no idea this kid wasn’t even in the house. He could have slept there and I wouldn’t have realized till I checked his bed. I freaked out. I started proverbially pistol whipping myself “Bad mommy, bad mommy.” My girlfriend, Julie ran out the door like Ed McMahon was showing up with a check, and got him for me. Of course everyone was laughing ... ”LOL, you have eight kids ... lol” I found NONE of it funny at all. I wanted to call DYFS and turn myself in.
When Julie brought him in the door, I saw the halo around his head, and I hugged him like he had been lost in Agrabah at the market. He thought I was crazy and sat down and woofed a spare rib down his throat while I just stared at him, sobbing.
As you can see, almost four years later, I’m not really over the moment, but I can own it, and say yeah, even good mommies get a “MY bad.” and this was only the beginning.