Sunday wasn’t the best day for our little family. April was pretending to be January. My children thought 6:30 am was a good time to play, shout, and wrestle on my bed. I was (and still am) in limbo with my medication transition and my sleep, patience, and nerves were lacking.
My four year old was a stage five clinger. My six year old thought it was a really good day to practice his back talking, sarcasm, teenage angst, and pushing limits techniques. Me. I just wanted 30 minutes to drink my coffee, sit in silence, and shower in peace. The day snowballed from there. Lots of yelling. Even some screaming (I was not excluded from this). Lots of tears. Lots of consequences. Lots of will you please just stop arguing with me.
I went through the day defeated, tired, exhausted, and most of all feeling guilty. Guilty for having a day like this. Guilty for being annoyed at my children. Guilty for yelling at them and having to be the “mean” mom. Guilty for losing my cool with them. Actually I believe the term I used once was “Mom needs a time out before she loses her shit.” Guilty for being their mother and not the fun, cheerful, upbeat, over the top grateful adult in their life.
When did motherhood require women to be perfect?
I tell my boys all the time that only one perfect person has ever been on this Earth and that is Jesus. Yet, for some reason, mothers are required and pressured to hold the same standards.
When did motherhood mean I can’t have human emotions?
I have bad days, with crabby, pissy moods. I get mad, annoyed, angry, sad, hurt, frustrated, disappointed, tired, and hungry. I also have really good days, with energy, excitement, optimism, joy, and peace. God created people to have all of these. So why is it when I have an off day, I have to feel ashamed. Moms can have bad days too.
Why does being a mother mean I have to have everything figured out?
I make mistakes in my parenting. All. The. Time. I am learning everyday what works and what doesn’t. I am still a novice in motherhood. Only six years in. A single mom navigating co-parenting with an ex and his plus one for a measly two years. Plus my kids aren’t the same and they are constantly growing and changing. I can’t keep up. But for some reason, mothers are suppose to know all there is to know about being a parent the minute that baby is born.
Why is it that because I wanted to be a mom means I have to always be grateful?
Savor this time. Enjoy every moment. They grow up so fast. You will miss this. Be happy you have a child. Be in the present. Don’t miss anytime with them. Soon they will be gone. Trust me. I know this. And I am damn grateful. I thank God everyday for giving me the two greatest gifts on this Earth. I understand my time is limited with them. Trust me. I send them off every other weekend to live life without me. However, it is perfectly acceptable for the moments I savor to be when they are asleep or sitting quietly watching TV.
I feel this. I feel that as a mother I cannot falter. I turn and some article, scientific research, social media photo, or celebrity is saying out loud I am doing it all wrong. Maybe I am not trying hard enough. Doing enough. Being enough. Motherhood shouldn’t be this hard.
I call bullshit.
I love my children. More than they will ever understand or know. I wake up every morning with the purpose of showing them by words and example. I try my best at all that I do, including being a mom. Sometimes my best is sub par. Sometimes my best impresses the harshest critic.
So why as a mother am I pressured to perform at a higher level?
Or maybe I am the only one that feels this way?
By the end of the day Sunday, I was done. I almost allowed the mom guilt to make me feel like a failure. To let the perfect mom image get me down. To permit a crap day dictate my level of love and commitment I have for my children.
I am a good mom. I am the perfect mom for my T & G. Bad days included. Just as I know you are a good mom too. No. You are a great mom. Because as mothers, we love our children. And that love includes good days, bad days, emotions, fun, hardships, tears, hugs, kisses, losing our shit, let’s try again tomorrow, and waking up with a full heart.
Sunday wasn’t something to brag out for my little family. But at the end of the day, the three of us apologized to each other. We said sorry for yelling and being crabby. We hugged and gave sloppy kisses. We said I love you. We held hands a little longer after bedtime books. We acknowledged that we are humans with big feelings.
As a mother, I want my children to know my love, feel my love, and be safe in my love – everything else doesn’t really matter.
And a bad Sunday isn’t going to change that.
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