Wednesday, March 5, 2014

If I Could Tell You One Thing

So, this is the thing.  My oldest child turned 8 on Monday.  And it's totally messing with me. I am simultaneously weeping at the thought of him leaving for college in a decade and unable to process how eight years has passed so quickly.

I love being a mom more than anything on the planet.  It's what I was born to do.

But it did not come very naturally to me (a great paradox of life).  I floundered through my first few years.  And I still flounder.  But I really struggled those first few years.  Because, oh my gosh, babies and toddlers are hard.

Case in point:  my precious Luke just came in to tell me he needed to tell me something.

"I don't like you," was his important message.

Thankyouverymuch.  I am so glad to know that.

But thank you for proving my point.

This parenting thing is hard.  For some reason, in our American culture, we have to pretend that we have it all together.  That admitting weakness somehow means we have failed or we don't love our kids or something.  Which, in my opinion, is the root of "mommy wars" (but that's a different post for another day).  I digress....back to my point.....

Thinking about my years so far as a mom....and when I think of what I wish I had known 8 years ago, it's this:

You are doing a really good job.  You are doing a much better job than you think you are.

Most days you probably don't feel like it.  And most likely your children's behavior won't reflect it.

But you're doing a really, really great job.

I've had many incredible days in the last 8 years.  Days filled with laughter, joy, and fun.  Where I felt like a really great mom.
But I've also had many days that have ended in tears and guilt, with me genuinely wondering if I should start saving for my children's therapy bills, because I screwed up so badly.

We all have really sucky days.  But those do not define your parenting.

When you go into your child's room at night and you look at their precious little sleeping selves, and your heart feels like it might explode because of how much you love them......then you can rest assure that you're doing a really great job.
No matter how much you blew it that day.  Or how thankful you are they're finally asleep.  Or how much you will enjoy a glass of wine (or in my case, a cold Diet Coke) and some trash TV when you exit the're doing a much better job than you think you are.

Your kids love you and adore you (even when they say they don't).  They think the world of you.
Even at your worst moments, you are their world.

Sweet mamas (and dads), you're doing a really, really good job of raising your precious children.

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