Mommy Moment – Michelle Style

That’s right! It’s time for another Mommy Moment at the Monster! If you’re not sure what a Mommy Moment at the Monster is, head over and read all about how Mommy Moments at the Monster came to be.

So let’s welcome Michelle from Michelle’s Dinner Bell! Michelle is a mom and a major foodie. She’s actually a friend-of-a-friend and we live in the same town, but have yet to meet. If you haven’t visited Michelle’s blog before, you’ll find super simple recipes that you can make whether you’re a great cook or hate cooking. Seriously, you’ve got to check her blog out!

Go grab a cup of coffee and a donut, ahem, I mean a low-fat muffin, or depending on the time of the day maybe some wine and chocolate, and sit back and enjoy the story!


You know those explainer moms?  The ones who explain in great agonizing detail everything that may or may not happen and every possible outcome to their child?  Good or bad, I am decidedly not one of them. I would like to say it is a conscious decision on my part but really I am an avoider. It stems from my own very weak stomach and propensity for dramatic fainting when people say words like “vein” or “gag”. After giving birth to 4 children, you would think I would have outgrown this.  Sadly I have not.  I recently nearly fainted at the dentist office when the patient before me was scheduling his own follow up appointment because he said the word scraping.  It nearly did me in. So my own strategy when taking the kids to the doctor is to announce it in the same voice and with the same fanfare I would announce a trip to the grocery store. No long discussions or explanations or possible outcomes.  Just fervent praying on the way that nothing will freak me out when we get there.  I somehow figure that the calmer I act, the less likely my kids are to pick up on my own particular brand of freakishness.

My five year old needed quite a few shots to start kindergarten this year.  Four shots and a TB test to be exact. I stepped into the nurse’s station to sign the release forms for each shot as she prepared them.  I took deep cleansing breaths and explained to her that it would be best if she didn’t try to explain everything and make a big deal and if she’d just come in and matter-of-factly jab those puppies into my boy and let us leave, that would be the best course of action.  I am not sure how she understood that to mean she should come into the room and with the manner of a serial killer on an Unsolved Mysteries reenactment, lay out each shot in perfect alignment and explain in excruciating detail that the first thing she was going to do was stick a needle in his arm and make a bubble and he needed to be still.  Okay, so the words needle and bubble together caused me to start sweating profusely.  The scent of my Secret deodorant became sickeningly thick and I knew we were in trouble. Luke heard the same words and had his own reaction.  He looked at her like the world had gone mad and said very emphatically that no she was not going to do that to him because it would hurt.  Then he somehow turned into the incredible hulk and began fighting.  She managed to stick him anyway but not in the right spot and not with the right bubbling effect. I told her I was going to have to get my husband to finish this and so I was spared the rest of the ordeal.

When it was over, my husband asked me if it is always like that and didn’t I explain to him what was going to happen.  At which time, I introduced myself to him because clearly we hadn’t ever met.  I do NOT discuss medical things.  Ever. Anyway, that was a Friday and the doctor was way behind so would we like to come back on Wednesday for the actual physical.  Why yes, yes we would.  This is an avoider’s dream, right?  So we left and went and got ice cream and life returned to normal.

On Wednesday morning, I decided to be an explainer because it was apparently expected of me.  And he wasn’t going to have any shots because he just had them. So I promised him no shots, just a quick little look over by the doctor and we’d be out of there.  Well, I walked into the doctor’s office and immediately saw the sign about having the TB tests read in 48 hours or else they’d have to be redone.  Crap! I had forgotten to bring him back for that.  So there I was, sweating and hyperventilating in my seat, knowing they were going to be discussing “needles” and “bubbles” and my husband wasn’t there to save me.  Plus I had PROMISED no shots.  I mean, I actually used the words I promise. I wanted to leave but school started the next day. I had no choice.

Well, to make a long story short, they couldn’t re-do the TB test that day because they have to wait 30 days after the one that I failed to have read.  But the good news was that they had more of the chicken pox vaccine that they were out of when we were there on Friday and they’d get that fixed right up for him.  On any other day, I’d have rescheduled the shot for another day to keep my promise, but I was afraid that he wouldn’t be able to go to kindergarten the next day without it.  The look on his face when he said, “But you promised,” was heart breaking but I held my ground and said that I had made a mistake and never should have said that and that mommy was (gasp) wrong.  If I was hoping for something heartwarming and after school special-ish, I didn’t get it. The sting of mommy betrayal was too deep.  Fortunately, however, I was able to buy my way out of it with a trip to the dollar store on the way home.

I wonder if this will be a memory that will stick with him as a time I let him down.  I know as a mom it is inevitable and that you can’t always buy your way out of it with a handful of trinkets from the dollar store. It is my hope, however, that I can always admit to my kids when I am wrong and apologize for it.  It is my hope also that the times I get it right will outshine the times I don’t.


Thank you for sharing this Michelle, and for being honest about how sometimes we make promises that for whatever reason we can’t keep. I can just imagine the look on your son’s face because I have seen that same look too, and I bet every parent reading this has seen it as well.

There’s no manual out there for what we do, so sharing stories like this helps us all learn from each other.

Now head over to Michelle’s place Michelle’s Dinner Bell and if you are new there, make sure to tell her that I sent you!

It’s not too late for you to enter my California Wine Club FREE WINE giveaway! Enter for your chance to win now!


  1. I make promises I can't keep ALL.OF.THE.TIME. Great post!
  2. I hate when I promise things that I then have to break. Hate. It. You would think that I would eventually learn not to promise, but no such luck :( Their little faces are so accusatory, it breaks my heart. Bribery is a handy little tool isn't it? :)
    • I cannot believe that four kids into this mothering gig I actually promised no shots at the doctor's office. I do not know what I was thinking. But yes, the faces.... Of course it's fortunate they are so stinkin' cute when they are little because, well, you know what might happen. Thanks!
  3. I'm pretty sure the memory won't stick. My momma tells me things from being tiny - when she screwed up, etc. All I remember is that she was there, she loved me.
    • MommaKiss, I hope you are right. I picture him in 30 years and we're at Thanksgiving dinner and he tells me and everyone there, "One time my mom lied and said I wouldn't need shots and I did and my life has been a mess ever since."
  4. I can definitely relate to this. I hate it when I do end up telling my kids something and then it changes because of some other adult - not even my fault!! But sh*t happens and we have to teach to them to suck it up I guess too! Ha!
  5. I think as long as you say you are sorry and admit you were wrong you are still in good graces. I try to avoid using the "I promise" word, but my kids will still throw it back in my face even though I know that I never said "I promise"!!
  6. In parenting, promises were made to be broken. Or so it seems. (LoL) I learned fast not to make promises (similar to the shot ordeal) and learned to say "I don't know". Or, "I'm not sure". That way you aren't the bad guy because you can't break what you don't know. LoL
  7. My heart breaks for you, having to say "I'm sorry, I made a mistake." Eeek. My mother was an explainer - so, as such, I, am an avoider. Just do whatever, but don't tell me . . . and, of course, I just allow whatever happens to the kids. I fear I'm raising two explainers.
  8. I agree, that the best thing you can teach your children is to admit it's okay to make mistakes and follow through when you know you've made a mistake. Kudos to you!