Natali Morris Blog

July 25, 2017

Parenting Performance Review

What if parents got annual performance reviews like employees? I ask because on Wednesday I will have been a mother for 7 years and I wonder on these anniversaries if I am doing right by this job.


Don’t worry, I won’t use this post as an opportunity to brag about my parenting save this: My son – my first born – he’s a way better person than I am a parent and nothing I can do will ever change that. But I fancy myself the CEO of his life and he will benefit or suffer from my efforts. So if I were to be evaluated by a superior, how would they evaluate my performance as a mother of this little boy?

Well I have it all worked out in my head. The problem is that children have no respect for the clock. The best laid plans are scribbled on with orange Sharpie.

I mean, how many creative ways can you think of to communicate this:

“Put on your EVERLOVING SHOES before I turn into a fire breathing dragon!”

I try so hard to hit all of the teachable moments. I listen for the stories from school that may help me tell an appropriate allegory. The problem is, they only land with 50% effectiveness from Mommy. The same story would land with 100% effectiveness from Daddy. Daddy is the sage. Mommy is the mall cop. I must figure out what is wrong with my branding.

Would like to hit more bath nights during the summer. Why? I don’t know. Who  cares if your hair is like a chlorinated broomstick? You’re having fun. Okay screw the goals. This is dumb.

Well now here I get an A+. I had a third child this year and it has taught me that I can PRODUCE. I can change a diaper, nurse, pack lunch, puree some baby food, brew a French press coffee, and get a healthy breakfast on the table all before 7:30 a.m. I can keep up with the lessons, the doctor’s appointments, the birthday parties, have rides scheduled, and birthday presents wrapped. This mother-of-3 comes correct when it comes to getting it done!

I will always try my son. I will always try.

I get super excited when I can repurpose leftovers and make each trip up the stairs serve two chores at once. Does that count?

Last month Miles had to remind me 5 times to make him a playlist on my phone of John Williams scores. So yeah, I can improve upon this.

I give it my all. For better of for worse, I give you all I’ve got.

I can remember to get over myself sometimes. Some dishes can sit out. Some laundry and emails can wait. Last week we played matchbox cars for an hour and I went on a Slip n Slide in a bikini. I have to make an effort to stop executing your life all the time and start enjoying it more. I have to stop seeing this mom gig as All Business. I can do better at this, Son. I will try.


Bottom line: I don’t get a raise or a bonus. This is parenting, not middle management. But I get to see my boy’s little Glow Worm face every day. As I watch him go to sleep as a 6 year old for the last few nights, I find myself getting emo and thinking about this quote by Jackie Kennedy: “You have only one chance to raise your child.”


I love you, Son. Happy 7th birthday!

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