I struggle to find that line of what should be shared between friends over a cup of coffee and what can be publicly shared with friends, acquaintances, and strangers. Each time I try to find that line I remember when I told you that this blog wouldn’t only be the highlights, but instead the reality of LoLo’s life with twins. So I write this post to hopefully say, in a round about way, I see you Mama. This is less about – someone tell me that I’m doing a good job, because if I’m honest, deep down in my heart I truly believe that I am in fact a good mother. But at the same time, if I’m also being honest, occasionally I forget and I feel like I’m not hitting the mark. So again, I write this to hopefully encourage the one thinking she is failing or thinking she is also missing the mark… because I bet, if you were honest with yourself, you ought to cut yourself a break and realize that you are the best mother for them.
My kids are terrible listeners! Are mine the only ones?? Ok they are not terrible, and obviously I know they are not the only ones… but dang they frustrate me! I read some books, I watched and learned from other amazing moms, I read the cute inspirational graphics that mom bloggers post on their Instagram pages… and yet! Those stinkers listen to my husband far better than they listen to me! I mean, I’m glad they listen to somebody, but why can’t that somebody include me… that sure does a number on my mental… Anyone else have that trouble? Do your kids listen to the grandparents better or the babysitter better than they listen to you? Then on top of that, just to pile on, when my son is finally listening, here comes sis… whispering in his ear to do the opposite of what I’m instructing!! Are you kidding me! Sheesh.
Mom guilt comes in an array of comments, occupations, weather types, and nutritional forms. “Is that all you’re gunna feed them for lunch?” “What a beautiful day outside, you better get the kids out in the fresh air!” “How much screen time do you allow your kids?” “You work full time? Outside the home?” “Poor mama, you look like you could use some help!” None of these questions or comments are wrong, rude, or necessarily inappropriate in and of them selves… but when you hear them over and over, or have to defend your decisions, reasonings, and ways over and over, or when you begin to question yourself and your abilities because of these questions… this is when mom’n gets super difficult. I believe there is a time to look inward and work on yourself as a mom; there are certainly times that you take advice or see the gaps in your parenting a make hard choices to change and improve. Then there are times when yes, dinner will include frozen pizza and goldfish crackers. If you think they need a vegetable then roll up your sleeves and get to work. No, I wasn’t able to take the kids out to get fresh air because I worked 50 hours this week and I don’t have a single pair of clean underwear that fits my large pregnant ass! So, alas, I did not schedule in a leisurely walk with my children, I instead washed and folded 6 loads of laundry, stripped and remade 3 beds, miraculously found said frozen pizza and cracker (by the grace of God, otherwise it would have been crackers only)… oh and yes, probably sat them in front of the TV a bit too much in order to preserve a bit of sanity today. Did you have any additional questions about my mothering that you needed answered?
Am I alone here people? Am I too sensitive and I need to believe people are inherently good and not judgmental or full of passive aggressive questions?
Part of me is being dramatic to drive home a point. Another part of me is so serious though. I know I’m not the only one that feels this way. I usually need a good cry and then… and this is the important part… I review within myself the good things. My children have never once gone hungry or without a meal (and even if they had to they would certainly be ok!). My children get so much love and learn from many people because I work full time outside the home. They learn social skills, yoga, they discover new foods and exciting new toys (Miss Bobbi has all kinds of musical instruments that are fun and loud and noisy and… ya know, things that we don’t have at our house. But they get to learn and discover those fun things over there!) They go on adventures to the nature trails with YiaYia and Bappa. I come home from work and with all the energy I have left I love my kiddos. I play with them and read to them, I bathe them and make sure they a clean and safe and loved. There are parts of every day that I miss the mark, but I have yet to meet a perfect parent. My kids are amazing children. They may not listen all the time or get a green vegetable at every meal, they might need a little more vitamin D than they get, or they get tucked into bed by someone other than myself sometimes… but are their lives lacking because of that? Nope, I don’t think so. I’ll call that a win and I’ll definitely take credit for that win. Jamelle and I are raising some sweet, caring, smart kiddos.
We are definitely good parents. Definitely.
It takes practice and a focused effort to shut out the lies and remember that you are the best mama for them. Believing that your best is the best. Not just the best you can do, but the actual best for your kiddos. Practice telling yourself that and believing that. Mom’n ain’t easy, but you are the best at it.