Real families have real problems to work through. They have real burdens, real emotions, real imperfections, and that’s okay. So, why is it taboo for mothers to express the reality of life? Why do we have to gloss over things so that we look perfect all of the time? Motherhood is messy and stressful. Of course, there are good times that happen every day, and they should be cherished. But there are also some really rough times, and it should be okay to admit it.
Some days I clean the kitchen until it gleams, and I feel great! But, some days I’m exhausted, and I don’t want to vacuum. So, I don’t. Some days I dress nicely, make sure that my hair is done, put on some jewelry, and even apply a little makeup. However, some days I wear my pajamas until noon, and I don’t shower until the evening. My house isn’t dust free, my kids have holes in their jeans, and sometimes dinner is a PB&J sandwich with some baby carrots on the side.
I make mistakes every day with my kids. Some days I yell a lot. Have you ever tried to get a child with ADHD to put on his shoes? Lord, help me! Some days I’m so frustrated that I want to break down and cry. Other days though, I feel like the best parent in the world. On those days, I’m patient and kind...and well rested. We cook dinner together, and play cards, and dance in the kitchen. I really listen to their stories and we talk about life’s lessons. Usually, the days are intermixed with a lot of love and a lot of frustration.
I wonder if I’m doing an okay job over all. My kid’s teachers enjoy them. They tell me how respectful and how helpful they are. But, at home the boys talk back, they roll their eyes, and they whine. My kids have extremely good grades, but they complain about homework every day. We have endless arguments about procrastination.
I’ve listened to my friend’s stories and I know that I’m not alone, but sometimes it feels like I am. My kids have good friends. They play with the neighborhood kids on the weekends, and of course, they get into mischief (probably more often than they get caught). I’m pretty sure that my kids are normal. So, why am I sometimes made to feel like they're not?
Why should I ever expect them to be perfect? Why should I ever expect that I'll always be the perfect mother? We are human. We make mistakes. It's okay to be imperfect.