It’s not as easy as it looked on The Brady Bunch

I feel a bit today like the evil step-mother, yet I’ve neither the good fortune of  a husband nor the financial freedom of having moved into his castle.  I’m done “mothering,” as my only child is grown and a wife and mother herself.   I am not a mother to any of the children that I frequently tend to, yet find myself having to play a role that I’m not quite as good at as I thought.  It’s turning out to be more complicated than The Brady Bunch made it seem.  I don’t recall any episodes where Carol freaked out over the pajamas left on the floor or Mike being upset because Carol scolded Bobby for bickering with Cindy.  Of course, they had Alice to handle the picking-up and food preparation, and maybe Carol and Mike were having cocktails while Alice was doing yet another load of wash…I found myself irritable and agitated over the last 24 hours and I have determined that it is high time for me to try, very hard, to give up some of the “control” and just BE.

To say I am a control freak is a sort of negative term, yet it seems that there are few positive connotations associated with this description.  I always wax philosophic about compromise yet seem to be unable, or perhaps unwilling, to take my own advice I give others.  I know that my universe will not be sucked into a black hole if the loft is messy with unfolded clothes or mismatched game pieces or assorted Monster High accessories.  I KNOW that I can clean up after three little girls in only a few minutes and that EVERYTHING will be back in order in a very short time if I just do it myself, but yet I find myself raising my voice, which I am loath to do, over the same things over, and over, and over…SO WHAT?  the voice in the back of my head screams, if the toys are not exactly how YOU want them organized…maybe the girls like them like that.  SO WHAT? if some of the books are in the “wrong” section of the book case or the remote control is not exactly where you want it, or the long-sleeved shirts are mixed in with the pajamas in the sweat-suit drawer.  I know the world will not end if the undies get mixed in with the blankets or if the shirts are not folded as I would like.  I know all of this is true, and I have to find a way to stop sweating the small stuff.

I would like to think my daughter would say I was a good mother, but in retrospect, I yelled at her a lot over messes or things being out-of-place, in fact I think the only time I yelled was because of “messes” which probably in most other households would hardly be considered messes at all.  My status as a control freak is making mountains out of mole hills and nobody is better for it, least of all me.   I upset myself and everybody else in the house because I am bothered by small stuff, and yes, I know, I know, It’s all small stuff…if I could JUST BE, and realize that kids play and kids make messes and remind myself I can clean up anything, the whole “family” would be much happier.  Here’s the story, of a lovely lady, who is trying to help bring up three very  lovely girls…

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