Hey friend. How are you holding up? I hope that today hasn’t been too hard, but if it has, I’m sorry. I know what you’re feeling right now. You’re feeling like not enough. I know. Because I’ve felt it, too.
Maybe you’ve yelled at the kids again after the millionth time of promising yourself you weren’t going to be that mom. Maybe you’re angry for no apparent reason and feel like you want to run away. Maybe, if it’s really bad, you’re regretting thinking you could even handle being a mom at all.
What were you thinking? you might be whispering to yourself as you angrily sweep up a mess.
Maybe you yelled.
Maybe you ignored the kids for too long and are feeling guilty.
Maybe the bedtime routine killed you. If it’s anything like the last 500 times you’ve put them to bed, maybe it sucked you dry of any ounce of energy you had left for your time at the end of the day.
Maybe you’re looking at those angelic sleeping faces crying in the dark as you sing that lullaby wishing that you had done something different.
Maybe you messed up.
Maybe you forgot an important event, or maybe you lost a kid at IKEA.
Maybe you said something that you regret.
Maybe you’re just plain tired of messing up and asking forgiveness from little souls that you think deserve more than you. Let me guess, you wanted more for them? You wanted the WORLD. Not this. Not anger, and frustration and patience. Definitely not imperfection.
They deserve more than this, you think to yourself on the bad days.
Well, I just want to tell you, you’re wrong. They deserve you. Just like you are. Right now. The momma that yells most days that just wants to run away? That’s the momma that they need. Period. They don’t need the mom that only has it together all the time. She doesn’t exist anyway. They need you.
Because what would they learn if you were perfect? I’ll tell you….
They would miss out on what it means to say you’re sorry.
They would miss out on learning about emotions and how important it is to control them.
They would miss out on learning that adults mess up too.
They would miss out on learning that you’re tired, angry, even grumpy some days. And, that’s OK.
They would miss out on learning how to forgive.
They would miss out on those long talks you have afterward where you’re crying through tears.
They would miss out on those extra hugs and kisses.
They would miss out on the time you dedicate to them the next day when you maybe didn’t have enough time for them the day before.
They would miss out on a lot if you were perfect. Remember that on the days when it’s hard. Like today.
Because raising kids is just as much about you growing up as it is about them growing up.
Sure, it isn’t ideal that you have to learn together and that you make mistakes while you’re trying to teach them right from wrong. But something more than YOU? No, friend. They don’t need anything more.
And, maybe it is actually more ideal than you think.
They need someone who accepts that she needs grace, and that can see that there is beauty in the mess.
They need someone that when she is downright exhausted and can’t give one more hug or one more kiss on a bad day, will make up for it on the next day.
They need someone who watches out for herself. That knows when she needs a moment. They need someone that doesn’t sacrifice every part of herself, but someone that teaches balance in all things.
They need a real person guiding them through this world. Because only a real person can teach the real life lessons. A perfect mom can’t do that. Shouldn’t do that really. I would never allow someone that had never driven to teach my child to drive a car. So don’t think that a perfect person could possibly teach your kids how to do hard things. She couldn’t.
They don’t need perfect. They need you.
It’s true. They need you. All of you. Even the you that is having an awful day. Because they will have awful days too. And, when it’s awful, and you don’t feel like yourself, you’ll remember and you’ll tell them. You’ll tell them on the days when it’s hard for them. When they screw up and don’t feel a thing like themselves, they’re going to come to you. And that IS ideal. They’re going to remember that mom does hard things too, and she gets through it.
They’ll remember that it’s OK to have a bad day. A bad day doesn’t mean a bad life.
You’ll scoop them up and tell them on their hard days that no one needs to be perfect.
And you’ll mean it. And they’ll believe.
And, that, my friend is most definitely ideal.