Sergeant Mommy

Last updated on May 6th, 2024 at 10:59 am

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Reflection: Looking back to what type of mother I envisioned I would be,
to the type of mother I actually have become! 
Before I had babies:
I always wondered what kind of mom I would be before I had children. Would I be a pushover and let them walk all over me? Would I be strict and shout? Or would I be sensitive and cry for every bump, scratch or fall they incurred? To be honest, I secretly thought I would be the sensitive one. How can we shout at someone we love so much? That was before I had babies!
Even leading up to the birth of my first born, I had read books, and attempted to prepare myself for it all. None of that even came close to the real thing. For the first few months, I held this fragile, mini person in my arms, still unknown to how I would mother it. Yes, I knew how to take care of him in terms of feeding, changing, bathing, and napping. It was the more pressing questions of how will I discipline and teach him things for the future. As parents we have to build the foundation so they can build their dream home. I felt like that was a lot of pressure on my shoulders.
We all strive for something in the middle. Not too overbearing but not too soft either. Striving and succeeding are two different things. I did what I knew best, I followed what my mother did. Ok, granted I probably took it to a whole other level of strict than she ever did, but my momma was no pushover, I can tell you that right now. She hardly yelled because she didn’t have to, one look and we were all petrified to our very core. That’s power. She was strict when she needed to be and there for us when we needed a cuddle. I wanted to be like her!
After I had babies: 
What I became was a whole different kind of mommy then I ever thought I would be. Sergeant mommy! Where was my super sensitive, crying for my children’s little ouches, or running over and picking them up at the first sign of a whimper? Instead I made strict routines and I stuck to them like glue. There was feeding times, and naptimes at the exact same time, everyday. I found it easier to follow such a tight schedule then going through the day panicking, what do I do now?  Once they were put to bed, they were not picked back up until morning. I would sing, hum, rub their bellies if they stirred in the night, but I never picked them back up if they started shouting. It was one of the best parenting advice I ever received. It quickly taught both of my kids it was nighttime and they learned to self sooth back to sleep. Buba at 7 weeks slept through the night completely until present, and Missy Moo at 8 weeks slept through the night completely until present. I rarely ever have to go into them to reassure them. It shocked me that I stuck with it for so long and shocked me even more that it really worked. After hours of tummy rubbing, and humming, I thought Buba would never self sooth but it was worth it in the end so when Missy Moo came along I did the same with her. Where did this Sergeant mommy come from? I envisioned late nights rocking them both back to sleep in this beautiful cream rocker I bought, stealing cuddles in the process. Moments I do wish I had experience at least a little, anything for a sleepy cuddle.
As Buba got older, it was time to start disciplining.  I tried the naughty step, I tried time out in the corner, I tried popping him on his butt,  I tried it all. Things I thought I would never do. He really didn’t start throwing fits until recently so I got off lightly the first two and half years. As we approach three, he is turning into a testing machine, testing his momma’s patience right down to a thread. The only thing I found that works is putting him in his bedroom, on his bed for a quiet moment until he decided to be a good boy. At first it took will power to listen to him sob so uncontrollably, crying out, “Mommy I love you, Mommy, get me”. I stuck my ground. Lately, it only takes a few seconds and he is shouting down the stairs, “I be good now Mommy!” Then he can return. I stick to my gut feeling of what is right and wrong. I know so many think I am mean with my strict routines, and tough love but it never did me any harm.

“Just call me Sergeant Mommy!” 

Just because I am Sergeant mommy, a name I was given by some of my friends, (thanks) doesn’t mean I don’t love both my children unconditionally and show them love each and everyday. I hug and kiss on them so much so it is just short of chapping my lips. It may not be for everyone but I have found that both of my children respond to routines and consistent discipline really well. They both have always slept good for their naps and overnight. They know what is expect of them and when, which is very helpful especially if you are travelling far like we do a lot, to and from the states. When I say it’s naptime, on a plane, they nap.
It’s funny thinking back to how I was with Buba and how I am now with Missy Moo and what’s changed? Most people say, they have completely changes their ways. I often wonder if that’s why most siblings are so very different. For me, very little has changed, to be honest. I am not as over anxious as I used to be if she doesn’t finish her meals, or if she hasn’t pooped in a day I am not running her to the doctor’s office, this time around. The one thing I refused to get more relaxed about is her routine. I still feel it is important for her to have the same strict routines for feeding, bathing, napping and bedtime as Buba did. I don’t know maybe I just got lucky with two great sleepers. If so, thank you, and amen. If not, I think they should be treated and have the same rules as each other.
So I am the sergeant mommy that will leave the park in the afternoon, at the same time each day so that my kids eat dinner at the same time, and have their bath and bedtime the same time, each day. It may seem repetitious but for us it works. I still haven’t master’s my momma’s glare yet, working on it. When I attempt it now, Buba looks at me like, “what’s wrong with your eyes, Mommy?” No I am not crossed eyed, I am just crossed! Don’t get me wrong I do think a sporadic break in their routine wouldn’t kill them nor looking the other way when he pushes his sister over, because sometimes they have to teach themselves, but my OCD only allows it sporadically! lol
Looking back I never thought I would be sergeant mommy, but I am ok with it. Becoming a member of the Bad Mums Club and fully admiting that shouting occurs in my house, not that I like it but sometimes it does make us all feel better, even for the kids to release some frustration, after all, aren’t we all human?
* This is not open for debates on which parenting style is best, or what is right and wrong in parenting, it’s just a tongue cheeky post about how I am the very opposite kind of mother than I ever thought I would be. Have some fun and join in! Click the link below:
 mumturnedmom
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16 thoughts on “Sergeant Mommy”

  1. There is nothing at all wrong with Sergeant Mommy! I have to admit that I can be a bit of a Sergeant Mommy myself, but not quite in the same way as you…but then again I was in the Army for 7 years so when I say “Sergeant” I mean literally LOL! I wish I could apply it to all aspects of my parenting like you do…a strict routine from the get go would’ve probably done my children some good! But because of our Army life, strict routines weren’t always an option. The Army likes to tell you “family first” but what they really mean is “family first, after the Army”. There were days when work would start early and end late, weekend duty, 24 hour duty, trips to the field, deployments etc. Practically impossible to set and adhere to a strict routine unless every part of your family care plan is on board, and since mine was grandma, that wasn’t happening lol! The point is, I have now progressed into a bit of a pushover while still managing to be on the strict side at the same time. My children are well mannered – something we taught them straight away! My sister is a very strict disciplinarian, and in no way a pushover like me, but my mom tells me that my kids are better behaved, so I guess I’m doing something right lol!

    Reply
    • Haha a true Sergeant I am one of those too but we don’t like to tell too many people that part. hahaha jokes. Every person parents differently because every child is different. What works for one might not work for another. Sounds like you have done an amazing job already!!!

      Reply
  2. I’m a bit of a routine queen myself! Bedtime is pretty strict here and I’ve been through the sleep training thing three times now 🙂 Middle one was the toughest! It is funny isn’t it, how our views change before and after kids. I don’t think you can know how you will be until you’re in the moment. I always said I wouldn’t shout… ha! Great post, thanks so much for linking it to #ThePrompt xx

    Reply
    • Thank you Sara, glad I am not the only one. So true, I think that about everything we don’t know how we will act, do, or react until we are in that moment. My views before being a parent on almost everything were sooooo very different.

      Reply
  3. Great post! We love routine in our house. People have said to me that I shouldn’t have forced a routine on Holly, but I can honestly say she was a much happier baby once we started to schedule naps and bedtimes more strictly. My daughter honestly thrived on routine and I didn’t have to force it on her at all. It just sort of fell into place, and if it hadn’t worked for us I would have tried something else.

    I’m also a bit of a strict mummy. H is a very well mannered toddler and for the most part knows that when mummy say no, she means it! Holly’s daddy however is another story. He isn’t great at making her follow the rules and I always end up being the mean mummy who says no! He just wants to be fun daddy though! He’s getting there though, although I sometimes feel I’m mothering him by having to tell him to be firmer with Holly!

    It definitely sounds as if your routine works well for you, which is fantastic! Good for you Sergeant Mommy! *salutes you*

    PS – you’re blog is lovely!

    Reply
    • Oh Marilynn it’s like reading my own comment, Mr P is the nice playful Daddy too. I feel the exact same way about mothering him to be firm and telling him how to parent. I am always the bad guy in this house. But I know someone has to be. lol Thanks for the salute. I hate when I get the your a mean mommy looks from others. lol And thank you so much for stopping by my blog, hope to see you again soon. Glad you like it.

      Reply
  4. Im abit like you.. I like routine! I find it works best, I know what im doing and my kids know what they doing also!. Ive always been strict when it comes to the bed time routine, they self settle and even now there 9, 6 years and 10 months there sleep 7pm to 7am! 😀

    Reply
    • That’s fantastic. i think routines seem to show that the kids really do respond better and sleep better. You are a great mom of three wow. Super woman. I think routines help parents too. Win-win. Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting.

      Reply
    • hahaha I love that I may sound like i have it under control but why don’t we ever as parent feel this way? hahahaha Thanks again for hosting my lovely. I too wonder how long I can maintain Sergeant Mommy with both of mine. Guess we shall see! lol

      Reply
  5. Hi Jenny,
    First of all, I love your honesty – and I never doubted for a second that you love your kids and are a great mom.
    Secondly, I’m getting ready to have kids and I ask myself a lot of the same questions you wrote about – so It’s nice to know I’m not alone!
    Lastly, GREAT TIP about teaching your children to self sooth. I think the best thing we can do as parents is to raise our children to be self sufficient and self possessed – instead of creating patterns of dependence.
    GREAT WORDS!
    THANKS!
    Heather Wyancko

    Reply
    • Ahhh thanks Heather for your lovely comment and reading one of my old posts. I think people put a fairytale good stuff out there but not always the reality of being a parent all the time. Congrats on having kids they really are such amazing part of life.

      Reply

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