Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Being the Bad Guy (AKA, The Mom)

Jason and I have had one recurring argument for our almost four years of marriage, and it's probably the only one we ever have regularly. When I married him, I knew he was a fun loving dad and a fun loving guy. Let's be honest here - most of our husbands, who are good dads, are fun loving guys, right? They are all pretty much 13 year olds at heart (with certain things), no matter how old they get. Don't get me wrong, this is a great quality of his because he will play and roughhouse and I really don't like to, he is always in a good mood when I have, um, fluctuations. I can't fault him for a lot of things, but this is one thing that always seems to put a hitch in my giddy-up.
They call me the fun-ruiner in my house. Seriously. That's my nickname. Not only am I a mother, but I am also a stepmother, responsible for another woman's children. So, I am not just cautious, I am super cautious of anything that could prove to be dangerous in the slightest. Ever since the first Christmas, when Jason let a 4 year old and a 7 year old ride their scooters over blocks of ice, I should have known, as I screamed for them to STOP! and they looked at me with faces of disappointment and bewilderment, that my role in my family would be the "safe" one and Jason's would be the "fun" one.
This weekend, I wouldn't let the kids out of the house hardly at all. They hated being stuck in the house. As their dad said, "Look that hill, wouldn't it be fun to sled down!" and they got super-excited and got their hopes up, I said, "look at those people who can barely walk, adults, who are falling on their rumps. Oh, and it's 22 degrees. And oh Jordan, you just got over pneumonia, so no, we will not be sledding down that Hill of Death." Or, when Jason knocked icicles off the bushes for them to lick like popsicles, and I had to come along and say, "By the way, these small kids are walking on sheets of ice, not paying attention, and they are holding spears in their mouth. Won't that be awesome if I take them back to their moms with a sharp icicle jabbed through the back of their throat." Or, when I have to be the one to ask them, "Kids, where are your socks?" or "Sophia, your jeans are soaked to the bone, you need to change" or "Yes, Jordan, I know you are 11 and you don't want to wear a hat or thick shirt in subzero temperatures because you are 'hot' and it doesn't look cool but I don't care because I love you too much to send you to the hospital today for frostbite."
Where is their father in all of this? Sledding down the hill himself on the back of a Tupperware lid, not wearing enough clothes himself, unaware he is 34 and not a teenager, who I also have to remind "you will be sore tomorrow, probably not a good idea to take a 10th turn! (Although, if he's sore, that's his own fault, so I really don't care if he gets sick or injured, he is old enough to know better.)
I get so tired of having to be the bad guy, the nagger, the cautious one, the safety police, the fun-ruiner, the one who says no, and the one who makes them do all of the things they don't want to do. I get mad at Jason sometimes because he doesn't notice things that I notice. And it's especially bad when you are the stepmom, because no matter what I do, I am the fun-ruiner and he isn't, even if he actually is.
I am sure all moms feel like this and it's supposed to be this way. But sometimes, I would just like to have fun with kids without thinking of safety or health, but I don't think that's something I will be able to do, as long as they are too young to make their own decisions about a lot of things in their life.
The funny part is - in my personal life outside of being a mom, and before I was a mom, I was anything but a "fun-ruiner." I was the fun starter, the fun-haver, the life of the party. I was the social center of a group, the outspoken one who wasn't afraid of any social situation. My three kids will never ever know that about me, not in the way my friends and family have. They will never know me in that way and sometimes, it just kills me that in one area of my life, I am so fun and in another, I am fun's kryptonite Not always, but a lot. I have to be sometimes. It's a hard line to walk, for sure.
Anyone else feel like this sometimes?

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