My mom is one of the nicest people you will ever meet. Ask anyone who knows her. She’s awesome. But when I was a little girl she made me do horrible things like eat vegetables and wash my hair. How mean is that?

Like my mom, I’m the parent who stays home with the kids. That makes me the mean parent. I make sure that my kids do their chores, stay reasonably clean, and eat somewhat healthy meals. I require them to use their polite words and I’m the one who gets after them when they don’t treat each other nicely.

We had a bad day recently. One of those terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days that make you want to move to Australia. My youngest son, who has always been a very active little guy, was out doing himself. All day he had been a spinning top crashing into everything in his path. At the end of the day, after repeated attempts to encourage better behaviour, I sent him to bed early.

In Carter World, going to bed early is almost the worst thing that can happen to you. It is perhaps even more horribler than being too young to go to Youth Group with his brothers. So when I sent my little man to bed, he was not happy. At all.

Later that night I found a note taped to Carter’s bedroom door. In big letters his note read: I miss dad. I love dad. Dad is my best friend. And in small letters at the bottom of the page: I hope mom still loves me.

Oh my goodness. It is just so hard sometimes.

This post is for all the mean parents who stay at home with their kids while the nice parents are away doing what they need to do to keep us all fed and clothed. Lord, give us all heaping measures of your grace and mercy, and the ability to laugh and move on. Great is your faithfulness!

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