Thursday, October 2, 2008

Slow Down, We're Moving too Fast

Yesterday, Oprah featured Brenda Slaby, the poor mom who inadvertently left her two-year old daughter sleeping in her car for eight hours. Obviously her daughter didn't survive. This horrible story struck such a chord with me and I blogged about it when it first happened. Any mom with half a heart could completely understand and empathize with poor Brenda who seemed so achingly normal.

Who among us hasn't done something completely scatterbrained that could have easily had tragic consequences? Just last week, I let my poor dog out for a quick bathroom break and completely forgot to let her back in before I left for work. We don't have a fenced-in yard -- our sweet, old dog is just trained to stay in our yard and come back to the door when she's done. Fortunately my neighbor called me at work --4 hours later -- to let me know that the dog was still outside. Hubby, who works close to home, was able to come home to let her back in. We were so lucky that she didn't wander off into the street where she could have gotten hit by a car. It could have been a really bad scene and it would have been all my fault.

We're ALL overwhelmed, doing way too much. We're not taking the time to do any one thing well. We're living in an era of extreme work environments, hyper-parenting and idealistic and unrealistic notions of being the perfect parent, wife, daughter, friend, etc. We're not taking the time to just -- BE.

I for one took this Oprah episode as yet another reminder to slow down, strive for "not bad" instead of perfect with my kids, my house, my work and my relationships. And its time to rethink whether I really need to be "doing it all" right now, at the same time.

P.S. Reader Anissa joined Oprah via skype during this show to represent all of us overwhelmed moms. You go, girl!!!


Anissa Mayhew said...

Well, thanks for the shout out!

But more importantly, thank you for reinforcing what I hope was coherent in my little part. We need to stop worrying about judging each other's "skills" and focus on being the best moms we can be to our children...and that's different for each mom and each child. I don't even parent my individual children the same, how can you possibly expect a uniform approach from household to household.

anonymous said...

gosh I saw that show and I've done some pretty scatterbrained things myself. once went off downtown and had to come back and get my daughter. luckily I was only gone for 5 minutes