Bragging Rights — and Wrongs

My extraordinarily talented daughters.

My kids are the most beautiful, brilliant, charming, witty, well-mannered and accomplished beings ever to grace the screens of Facebook, WordPress, Twitter and Instagram.

Well, at least I think so. And I’m not shy about sharing news and photos of their achievements – though I do try to limit my posts to 25 or 30 per day.

Apparently other moms and dads out there aren’t as restrained in their online boasting about awe-inspiring offspring. In fact, many are not only more prolific in their sharing, they’re also much less discriminating about what they choose to share. So what’s a civilized person to do about it? Well, start a blog, of course! Namely, Shut The F*** Up, Parents, which has now become a book.

But even with such public shaming of the most egregious offenders, it doesn’t seem to be getting better. In fact, as new and improved types of social media arrive, it’s just getting worse. So now, a proud mom isn’t limited to Tweeting or posting Facebook albums of her daughter’s star turn as “Second Sailor on Boat” in the middle school play. She could also treat the world to countless Instagrams and six-second video Vines of said daughter’s performance!

Not that I would, but I could.

You know, if I were that kind of parent…

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Bragging Rights — and Wrongs

Do it, parents, as you please —
You celebrate those victories:
The first word when he learns to talk!
That first step when he starts to walk!

When junior learns his ABCs
Or ties his tiny shoes with ease,
Of course a brag or two’s allowed
From parents who are mighty proud.

And when he brings home mostly A’s,
It’s your full right to lavish praise;
Or when his team has won some game,
His skill at sport you must proclaim.

We’ll listen and we’ll chime in, too,
Congratulating him – and YOU!
We’ll even look at pics you shot –
But some things you do, we cannot.

For instance, don’t expect us to
Exclaim in joy to hear from you
About the time HE BURPED! a bit,
Got HIS FIRST RASH! or HIS FIRST ZIT!

And when your kiddo’s feeling sick,
I’m sorry, but don’t post a pic.
That slimy, greenish nose he’s got?
You say it’s cute — but no. It’s snot.

And when you talk about his poop?
(The body functions, as a group,
We’d much prefer that you avoid)
That kind of crap gets us annoyed.

As for awards that he receives,
We’ll look at them — though we believe
Rewarding “School Attendance Skill”
Might qualify as overkill.

I guess the lesson here would be
That moderation’s really key.
Lest you commit it, please BEWARE
Don’t risk Parental Overshare.

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©2013 Carlotta Eike Stankiewicz

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Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms, grandmas and moms-to-be out there…

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Mother’s Day

There’ll be days when nothing works
to get your little one to sleep,
and days when dirty dishes
grow with diapers in a heap.

There’ll be days when you wake late
and miss your turn at the car pool,
and days when you’re the last one
claiming your kids after school.

There’ll be days when you forget
to sign the school permission slip,
or to pack a tube of sunscreen
for their day-long field trip.

And one day those hugs and kisses
will come few and far between —
when your charming little child
has transformed to sullen teen.

And the day will come when you’ve done all
to give them all your best,
when they’re off to school and off to work
and you’ve an empty nest.

On those days, though, please remember
all the times you got it right:
when you made that awesome costume
or your babe slept through the night.

When you were the homeroom hero
bringing cupcakes oh-so-sweet;
or you cheered them up with pizza
when their soccer team got beat.

When you cradled them and cuddled them
and wiped away their tears,
when you nurtured and encouraged them
and helped them face their fears.

Yes, remember this tomorrow
and a week or month from now,
or just any time the job seems
so impossible somehow.

‘Cause although it’s just official
for a few short hours in May,
when you think about it, really,
every day is Mother’s Day.

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© 2010 Carlotta Eike Stankiewicz