Monster Mommy Moment – Pop Style

Today, my favorite Daddy blogger, Pop from Go, Pop, Go, is going to be sharing a Monster Mommy Daddy Moment with us!

No idea what a Monster Mommy (or Daddy) Moment is? You can read all about how my new weekly feature came to be here.

Pop makes me laugh, makes me hungry (he’s a mean cook), and can make me all teary eyed when he blogs about his beautiful daughters and wife. He also is on Twitter, and is according to Twitter, one of my BFFs. That makes me happy. If you don’t already know Pop, you’re going to like him, I’m sure of it.

So 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 Pop’s Monster Daddy Moment!

———-

When Nat asked me to post on a time that I really screwed up as a parent, I struggled with what to write about. Not because I don’t have screw up moments but because no screw up could’ve been as bad as this one. As if on cue, I had my biggest screwup as a dad last night.

My daughter, who I refer to as D1 on my blog, is almost 3 years old. Potty training was a crappy (literally) experience, but we have been living accident free since November. Until this past weekend.

On Friday night, my wife and I awake to hear D1 crying just outside of our room. Apparently, D1 had been awake for a while and had been calling out to us because she needed to pee and by the time we finally awoke, it was too late. D1 was particularly distraught because she peed on Dora. You see, when we were potty training, the clincher was when we bought D1 character underwear and told her, “If you pee or poop on Dora/Zoe/Cinderella, they’re going to be very, very sad.” Actually, I don’t recall any of this because according to me wife, I mumbled something along the lines of, “I’m tired. Can you please take care of it?” and went back to bed. At this point, most of Nat’s readers are shaking their heads and thinking of instances where their husbands did the same thing. Or at least I hope you are.

I wish I could say I redeemed myself the following night, when the same thing happened. But again, I only found out what happened when I went to the bathroom in the morning and found D1’s panties and pants soaking in the sink. My wife stressed to D1 how she should tell us she needs actually say the words pee pee when she wakes up, because as any parent of a child who is or was recently potty training knows, while we have learned to tune out most words our kids say, we RUSH to action when we heard the words: pee pee or poo poo.

Sunday night came and went without incident. And then last night.

We made sure D1 didn’t have too much to drink late at night and made sure she peed just before she went to bed around 10pm. My wife and I get ready for bed and we put D2 (6 months) down and we all fall asleep.

…”appa (the Korean word for dad)….”

….”appa…”

“What in the world,” I think to myself. I look at the clock and it reads 2:20. And then I hear sobbing in the hallway.

“I think she peed,” my wife said, “Can you please take care of her tonight?”

I get out of bed and sure enough, a puddle of pee on the carpet and D1’s PJs are soaked. And then.

I lose it.

I suddenly become Robodad. I have zero empathy and have three prime directives: clean off the urine, get my daughter back to bed, and get myself back to bed as quickly as possible.

I pull off her urine soaked clothes and proceed to wash her lower body in the tub. Being robodad, I don’t even bother to check the water temperature as it wasn’t one of my prime directives. D1 is crying in horror because she went from sleeping peacefully, to peeing on Dora, to being run under cold water like a dirty dish, all within a span of a few minutes. D1 is crying so loud, my wife wakes up and makes her way to the bathroom. I’m holding D1 in one arm and wiping her down with a towel with my free hand. And then she cries out in Korean, “But Appa, I’m your friend! I’m your friend!”

At this point, most parents would’ve snapped out of Robodad mode, but not me. I continued on, determined to teach her a lesson.

She asked me to hold her and my reply was, “WHY DID YOU PEE ON YOURSELF?!” My wife steps in, holds my daughter, and proceeds to dress her in new PJs. D1 says, “Mommy, I want to cuddle.” (When we were weaning D1, we went from feeding her to cuddling and that’s our nightly routine). At this point, Robodad has’t learned empathy yet, so I tell her, “No cuddling! It’s time for bed.”

And then my heart of stone becomes a heart of flesh. I pick her up, take her to bed, and cuddle with her. She says, “I like you, Appa. You’re my friend.”

Tears.

“D1,” I said, fighting through the tears, “I love you. So much.”

“I love you too, appa.”

And then she falls asleep. Me? I’m doing the ugly cry and my mind is racing. Like some pubescent teen who was watching Super Bowl XXXVIII when Janet’s nipple flashed on screen, I kept replaying what just happened in my head over and over and over again. And just like I did for Nipplegate, I kept asking myself, “Did that really just happen?”

But unlike the FCC, I’ve learned that children are resilient and don’t react rashly. Unlike adults, I’ve found kids forgive and forget easily. And that’s both an incredible blessing and responsibility for us parents.

These incredible, resilient, loving beings trust us, and as such, we have the potential to cause irreparable harm. But we also have the potential to develop them into even more incredible, even more resilient, and even more loving beings.

We all have Monster Mommy/Daddy moments. But they are just that: moments. They come; they go. But our love for our kids remains steadfast.

And a note to new parents out there: This is just one of my Monster Daddy moments. I could go on and on about all the times I screwed up or overreacted, but I could also go on and on about moments where I did a wonderful job loving my kids. You may come across moments where you feel like you are the worst parent in the world and your child had the sad misfortune of winning some Born to the Worst Parents Ever lottery, but remember, having a worst parent moment doesn’t mean you are terrible parent. You’re the perfect parent for your child and those moments will pass and become a distant memory. If you let them. And the same goes for your kids when they become monsters, too.

———-

Thanks Pop, for reminding us that we are all sharing the same experiences with our children and that we’re all in this together.

Now go swing by Go, Pop, Go and say hello to Pop, and if you’re new to Go, Pop, Go make sure to tell him that I sent you. I know you’ll really enjoy his blog.

And so it goes…

Comments

  1. Oh man. I have so, so, so been there. Too many times.

    Hang in there Pop!
  2. Those middle of the night wake-ups are so hard to be kind about. I totally know what you mean.

    Though I love your fun Janet Jackson moment you slipped in there!
  3. Sigh...those are the darkest moments for me too. When exhaustion takes over the brain and it's only mission is to get. back. to. sleep.

    It's so true though, Pop, that "kids forgive and forget easily. And that's both an incredible blessing and responsibility for us parents."

    And what a huge responsibility it is.
  4. I think this sounds a lot like dads everywhere. Robodad is more common than you think as is CoddlingMom.
  5. Megan (Best of Fates) says:
    I LOVE sleep. Seriously, I LOVE it. If I could marry sleep and have dozens of sleep babies I would fight for my right to marry sleep to the Supreme Court. So I'm terribly worried I'm going to be a horrible mom and act like Robomother all the time, not just one night!
  6. MommaKiss says:
    Pop. Only you could manage to get Nipplegate into a loving post about your sweet kids. I almost said "touching" post but that didn't seem fair after saying Nipplegate.
  7. Mommy Lisa says:
    aCK - me too and I only have one.
  8. Wonderfully funny post that reminds us that even DADDY has his days!!
    Thank you!
  9. Sluiter Nation says:
    I am at my WORST when I am lacking sleep or woken in the night. My husband is actually BETTER than I am at being kind and loving in the night. I am only good at picking him up and taking him to bed with me. If it's changing a diaper or dealing with vom, pee, or poo...I am sort of a bee-otch.
  10. I am the female version of you Pop. Seriously, just call me Robomom. I think I've had the exact same conversation with my daughter when she was potty training. I was terrible. But I agree with previous posters that the stuff you say when you are woken up in the middle of the night is probably the worst. And guess what? Your daughter will likely say the same exact thing to her kids...its the way the world works.

    Don't be too hard on yourself! And PS - I love your blog. Love your honesty. It's wonderful.
  11. It's so hard for me to keep my cool when it's the middle of the night and all I want to do is sleep. I have almost no patience then. We've all been there in some way.
  12. I want to laugh but I can't...this is so sweet!
  13. Funky Mama Bird says:
    This was hilarious. It also reminds me of the time our (then) 4 month old woke up in the middle of the night and it was my husbands turn to get him.

    Instead of cuddling him and swaddling him back up, he proceeds to undress the child and hold him up under a light in the bathroom because, "There must be something wrong with him; he won't stop crying."
  14. The mad woman behind the blog says:
    I do the zombie walk and fortunately we haven't had MAJOR accidents YET. But thank you, thank you for the glimpse into my future as I see this happening as my family and sleep loss grows.
    Nipplegate. Love me some Go Pop Go
  15. @KmamaThank you! I hope I won't have TOO many monster daddy moments, but am grateful for the seemingly endless mulligans toddlers offer - though I'm sure it won't be free of charge as she gets older, and especially when she becomes a teen.
  16. @Liz
    "Though I love your fun Janet Jackson moment you slipped in there! "

    Yes. "Slip" is definitely the right word there.
  17. @Nichole Yup - sleep has a direct correlation to my parenting effectiveness, i.e., more sleep, the better the parent I am. There seems to be a similar corollary with wine as well, (more wine, better parent), but that has an upper limit (there's enough spit-up in the house, no need for me to add more).
  18. @KLZI'm afraid of CoddlingMom's - especially when I'm standing between them and coffee/alcohol/and the clearance bin at Nordstrom Rack
  19. @Megan (Best of Fates)I used to love Sleep too. She warned me, that if I kept hanging around with my wife, she'd leave me. She wasn't lying.

    Also? I would PAY to watch a cooking show with you cooking for your kids.
  20. @MommaKissNipplegate is ALWAYS relevant. Though as seeing my wife double-nippling with her breastpump and pumping bra, nipples have lost all sensual value.
  21. @Mommy LisaIt gets even worse with two. But the joys are also doubled too. Sometimes.
  22. @LeighannYes. Daddy has his days. And daddy has more days than mommy. But who's keeping count? Oh right. She is.
  23. @Sluiter Nationyup! When I'm awoken in the middle of the night, I can be a real bee-otch too - a beeotch with terrible morning breath. Fear me. For real.
  24. @AmeenaThanks Ameena! Tell your Ninja Husband I say hello.
  25. Mandyland says:
    I so feel your pain! The middle of the night potty breaks are the worst. It's nice to hear the dad perspective.
  26. @ShellWhy aren't kids built with an innate appreciation for sleep?! I'm going to remember this when she wants to sleep in during a school day.
  27. @KimberlyThanks! It makes me a bit sad to re-read it, actually. Thankfully, D1 doesn't remember it. :-P
  28. @Funky Mama BirdLOL! Definitely sounds like a dad to me - we're all about reverse engineering/taking things apart to figure out what's wrong with them.
  29. @The mad woman behind the blogThere's no such thing as Nipplegate in my family anymore. We'll have female guess over and my wife just whips it out! I look on in horror and she goes, "WHAT?! It's nothing they haven't seen before!"
  30. Oh Pop, if only I could take back things I said in anger, frustration, sleep deprivation or just plain thoughtlessness.
    Thank goodness for the resilience and just plain love that is kids.
  31. Dysfunctional Mom says:
    I love this post. The note to new parents is awesome!
  32. Lori @ In Pursuit of Martha Points says:
    Oh, ow...

    Yes, I know this moment. The time we screamed when we needed to be gentle.

    We breathe. We force perspective on like a spanx that's been in the dryer.

    And no, we are not monsters.

    We are people.

    Hee...Robodad.
  33. @MandylandMiddle of the night anythings are the worst.
  34. @ReneeI feel ya, Renee. I often have so many regrets and it's me as the parent who holds onto my screwups, while my kids couldn't care less. I'm often my toughest critic - I think I need to give myself a break every now and then. And I think all parents should do that from time to time.
  35. @Dysfunctional MomThank you! It's something I wish I knew when I became a dad.
  36. @Lori @ In Pursuit of Martha PointsRobodad doesn't do spanx, snuggies, and most certainly the shake weight.
  37. Aw, brought a tear to my eye and a smile too. That's what parenting is all about, we try to do our best, sometimes we don't succeed, cos we are only human. Doesn't lessen the love we have for our kids or vice versa though.
  38. Organic Motherhood with Cool Whip says:
    We've all been there. That's for sure. And it is so true about kids. They are so forgiving, it makes me want to be a better person just watching them. Looking forward to getting to know you better, Pop!
  39. The Empress says:
    Oh, I know that the hardest part about all this is to say to yourself "they won't remember."

    But, still, I can never wholly forgive myself.
  40. Not Just Another Jennifer says:
    Middle of the night stuff is completely beyond my control. Most of my monster moments happen then. Hang in there, Pop! PS Great advice for the newbies out there! And as usual, there was a pop culture reference that made me snort. :)

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  1. [...] for my child. Screw what other parents and their often judgmental eyes think of you. As I wrote on Nat’s blog: you’re the perfect parent for your child. And you’re the perfect partner for your [...]
  2. [...] woken up in the middle of the night. And if you remember my guest post over at Natalie’s, Monster Mommy Moment – Pop Style, how I’ve responded late at night has been a significant source of parenting guilt for [...]