Sunday, May 11, 2014

You Are A Great Mom, Even If You Stink At It


I have noticed an interesting and disturbing trend online regarding Mother's Day this year. The negative articles and posts have outnumbered the positive. Some writers are just against the holiday for the principle of it or the commercial aspect of it. They claim it's a "made up holiday". Well, what holiday is not a made up holiday? Others are reminding us to be sensitive to women who cannot have kids or have lost children or their own mother's have passed away. I understand and my heart goes out to those that suffer such pain at this time of year. 

But the majority of writers who are complaining about this holiday are moms right now. They dread it and cannot wait to get it over with. It is a day of feeling small and inadequate and unappreciated. I am reading women who know that they are not great at the job of mothering. These blogs and article authors list their failures. They talk about misbehaving toddlers, rude adolescents and grubby bathrooms. 

The greeting cards on display in the stores are like billboards of their own failure as mothers. Even though the mom blogs are full of love for their little ones, they also feel that they are never doing enough. Never living up to the mom-hype of Pinterest. Mother's Day is just another day to point out how they are failing. 

Tonight I was pondering why I enjoy Mother's Day now, more than I did when I was actively being a mom-who-raises-kids. When my sons were little I had many Mother's Day's sitting in church holding back tears. Smiling big all day long because it was my day to be "honored".  While on the inside I cringed at the broad, glowing sermons about the "glory" of motherhood. I knew I could not measure up to the words I was hearing. I remember being cranky, tired and overwhelmed. I did not put my kids first. I was not that generous, sacrificial, creative woman that my kids needed in order to grow up sane and healthy. 

But guess what? Not only did my sons  grow up to be sane and healthy, they are full of kindness, generosity, humor and creativity. My sons are my most favorite people to be around in the whole world. They are good men and I could not be prouder of them. I raised a couple of really neat people! 

THAT is why I can enjoy this holiday now in a way that I could not when I was in the middle of the task. I felt like a failure back then because I did not know if I was doing it right! I felt like I was blowing it all the time. But my kids are awesome people anyway! 

So here I am at 45 minutes before Mother's Day 2014 telling you that you are a great mom. You are doing just fine! Your kids are stronger and more perceptive than the current psycho-babble would lead you to believe. They will forget the short tempers and the forgotten lunch-bags. Your kids will survive your mess-ups. Your children do not need perfect cupcakes to feel loved. They do not need a perky Pinterest parent. They just need you to be you. 

All they need is to be loved. And you got that. Everything else will work itself out. To be loved by you is the only mom-requirement. You love your kids (most days) and that is the only universal need. 

You are a great mother. Believe it, take a deep breath and believe it. 

Now please try to have a wonderful Mother's Day!

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8 comments:

  1. This was wonderful! And I know exactly how you felt back then raising your kids. I felt that way too...and often felt unappreciated on the big day...just wanted to skip it all together. Still not my favorite day, but like you, I am very thankful for the sons that somehow grew up to be wonderful loving young men...full of joy and fun...and I am blessed beyond measure. I know I didn't do everything right...still don't, but somehow God made it work out okay in spite of me. Thank you for this.

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    1. BTW: I love that picture of you with your sweet little boys.

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  2. Yes, I'm not perfect either but I love my grown children. I enjoy who they are and realize how the whole process shaped them and me. The good and the not so good times are worth it.

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  3. I am told I am an expensive and exhausting mum. Payback I think.

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  4. I don't believe you, but I want to. ;) Love you and love your heart. And love that picture...AND you are just a blessing- you know that, right?

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  5. Wonderful and encouraging post. :)

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  6. Susie, I understand how you felt when your boys were growing up. I felt the same way. We just had one son but I was faced with his special needs. When we tried to do things like other families, I felt people were watching us and then criticizing our actions each time we did something 'normal.' But all that is behind me. Our son is a man and has a good job. We talk on the phone about three times a week and he finds the neatest cards for my birthday and for Mother's Day. Enjoy your weekend.

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