Getting Real With Veronica Ibarra

I like going on family outings to have fun and learn new things. I try not to overdo it with my 7 and 3 year old kids, but when it is just them and me, it is so easy to become overwhelmed with their various needs and demands. My son is prone to tantrums, but I try not to let that stop us from going out. I have to monitor him for the signs of his restlessness and make sure he’s well fed.

With my daughter I constantly have to talk with her about what the plan is and explain that even though we have a plan we might not be able to stick to it because of her brother. It is very difficult for her to understand that his behavior is a problem I cannot deal with in public with her and still carry on with our outings. She is immune to the haughty glares from others who are clearly giving me that look of “control your child or go home.” For her part she tells me to, “Just carry him over here, Mommy, so we can look at this.” Never mind that he’s gone completely limp to lay on the ground and when I pick him up he begins to kick so violently that I’m in danger of dropping him on his head.

My whole goal is to have some time out and about without the theatrics, but if I manage to call it quits just before my son’s decline goes into the tantrum, then my daughter starts up with the whining of her own about how it’s unfair that we have to leave before we get to see everything she wanted to. The fact that I spend all my time and awareness hyper-focused on their behavior means I haven’t really had any fun myself.

Fun is what you have when you can relax and get excited, not what you have when you are tense and on alert. I know I’m a good mom, doing the best I can. There are moms out there with multiple children in tow who seem to manage better than me. Am I too sensitive? Perhaps.

I’m hoping that as my kids get older things will get better. My son’s tantrums will lessen, and my daughter’s understanding will improve. I continue to plan outings and do the best I can because staying inside our house all day every day just isn’t healthy.