I feel like haven’t been the best mom lately.  I’ve been having a hard time with my 5 1/2 year-old and I know part of the problem lies with me not giving her enough of my attention.

It’s hard!  I have a 2 year-old son who broke his leg back in November, and I know deep down I’ve been paying more attention to him since then because I’m nervous.  I was nervous while his femur (and frankly 1/3 of his body) was in a cast, nervous when he wasn’t walking for almost a month post cast, and now nervous to let him be a kid.  (If only putting your kid in a bubble was more accepted he’d be in one!)

I think my daughter suffered a bit from this.  I think she had 3 years of her life with just me and all of the sudden not only is there another kid in the mix, but sadly I’m sure she noticed I was focused on him more than her lately.

I didn’t feel as guilty with it for a while since she had preschool (he didn’t), and swim class (he had to watch her), and her iPad to keep her busy.  (I’m being 100% honest here.)  I looked at her as more of a grown kid who can do things independently and I think some of this backfired on me.

She’s been acting out, throwing crazy tantrums (you wouldn’t believe she is almost 6 some days), and I think it’s all to get my attention.

Today I made a conscious effort to spend alone time with her.  She had summer camp until noon, then lunch, and when her little brother went down for a nap it was her time.

We played Legos, rescued super heroes, chatted about our days and talked about things we wanted to do this summer.  She’s smiling again.  Not just like her normal smile but that smile where you can see it in her eyes.  The smile I’ve been missing!!  This kid has my heart and I need to remember to step back some, put myself in her shoes and stop trying to multitask all the time.  The house might be a mess, there might be dirty dishes in the sink, but I’ll take it if my daughter and I could have some quality alone time.  I think this is what we both will remember.

I know I’m too hard on myself and I know no mom is perfect.  I also know my time with the daughter did more for her (and me) than I thought it would.  Let’s hope I can keep this up all summer and see some attitude changes from my strong-willed lady.

daughterplay2