The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Friday, June 06, 2008


My "Perfect" Child

My nine-year old son is completely indifferent about his school backpack being dusty, dirty and full of strange particles, dried leaves, old assignments, and leftover snacks.

I clean it out with him, trying to establish a working system that would mitigate the mess. I talk, beg, explain, and sometimes get really mad and scream. I nag, hug, and then occasionally cry when Alex is asleep.

Why is he such an absent-minded slob?

Will his future wife hate me for raising him this way?

What am I bestowing upon the world?

My mom carefully said over the phone last week, “Maybe it is because he is a boy.” Perhaps, but it just seemed that all his other classmates had their clean backpacks lined up neatly by the classroom door in the morning, instead of being tossed by the nearby tree, as was Alex’s habit.

Then there is this Perfect Mom of the Most Beautiful Girl in his class and possibly in the entire City. She volunteers for everything; she has long flowing blonde hair, incredible skin and -- naturally -- a very neat and tidy looking Perfect Child.

When she calls to remind me to look for an overdue library book, her voice is calm and friendly, and her manners are impeccable. I try to be mature and not compare us, not give in to the wave of guilt or the raging jealousy.

Heavens know I try. . .

Yesterday, I asked Perfect Mom if she got my check for the teacher’s gift that I gave to her Perfect Daughter a few days prior. She said, “Oh, yes, it was right between her old homework and a rotten apple.”

Not believing my ears, I actually had to ask, “She had a rotten apple in her backpack?”

Perfect Mom nodded emphatically, “All the time! And old burritos from PTA lunches, too!”

I was beaming on my way back to the car, and I actually giggled when I got inside. It felt almost evil to be so pleased about a rotten apple in some other child’s backpack.

I will still continue to nag and instruct my son, but now I know what I suspected long ago in my heart – he is a perfect little boy.

By Svetlana Nikitina


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I LOVE this post! I also get a thrill when I notice a flaw in other children just to remind me they are not as "perfect" as they seem and most surely not "better" than my own. I bet this mom would be the first to admit that neither she nor her daughter are actually perfect. Thankfully, nobody is.
I so identify with this! You don't want to celebrate the other's problems, but it's sure nice to know you're not the only one! :)
Charming post, and oh, so true!
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