My generation of mothers is obsessed with getting it right. We read all the books, all the blogs, all the articles, all the studies, all the alls. We stop at nothing to figure it out all.
This is hurting us tremendously and I believe is sending many of us into states of panic, depression and anxiety.
Our mothers and grandmothers didn’t do this. They just didn’t. First of all the internet wasn’t at their fingertips. But also, they just lived. They made mistakes, and we are all better for it.
I don’t have all the answers.
I don’t WANT all the answers. Life is about learning. We learn best from our mistakes. Sure, I want to get it right with my kids. But I won’t. And I can’t. So thank God for grace, because I wouldn’t be the mother I am without it.
When we’re so obsessed with getting it right, we miss what’s happening in the moment. We miss the little things, and those littles things are the stuff of life. How you spend your days is how you spend your life, and your kids just want to spend your days with YOU. Not perfect, “by-the-book” mommy. They want flawed, don’t-have-this-sorted-out-at-all but PRESENT mommy.
Sisters, please take a deep breath. Step away from the parenting articles. Generations of women have raised successful children for centuries. Without even a quarter of the information we have at our disposal.
We CAN do this.
We can raise competent children without knowing ALL THE THINGS.
We can love our children well, and provide them with safe living environments.
We can shower them with enough hugs and kisses to cancel out the screams we release in frustration.
We can let them make big mistakes, knowing all along mom and dad are never going to give up on them.
They won’t miss out on life because they weren’t potty trained by 3.
They won’t take a security blanket to college because you lost your cool that one time and totally unveiled the demon living inside the mom who just wants to pee alone.
They won’t fail 7th grade because you didn’t read to them for 30 minutes a day.
They won’t sit in counseling sessions because you didn’t know you were supposed to squeeze the food pouches into a bowl before serving (are they serious with that?!)
I’m not saying we don’t try to be excellent mothers. I am arguing that we recognize we already are. Do we have our blind spots? Yes, that’s why they’re called blind spots. Every mother I know worries she’s not getting it right. Do you know how freeing it is to just acknowledge that you AREN’T? And that you CAN’T? You’re doing your best, momma!
We don’t have to be perfect.
We have to be present.
Give yourself grace. Give your kids grace. Give your husband grace. Sprinkle that ALL OVER THE PLACE.
There’s a place for perfection but it is not in motherhood.