She walks past smiling, hair swept up beautifully and make-up done to perfection, looking elegant in her stylish outfit; not even a hint of stains on her clothes or dirt underneath her manicured fingernails. Close behind quietly marches several beautiful children, clean faces and tucked in shirts. Something deep inside of us stirs…
If only we could be more like her.
Before the thought even has a chance to complete its course, Satan is putting the finishing touches on a long list of all of our shortcomings as a mother and is enjoying the opportunity to slowly point each one out to us.
Willingly, we take ownership of every accusation, every charge, every lie…
Since the arrival of our first child we have worked endlessly to be that mom; the one with the perfect marriage, who never finds herself swallowed in sadness or struggles to be joyful at times. The one with unwavering patience, whose voice quietly speaks peace, never disciplining in anger. The one whose children are always obedient. The one who cooks perfect meals for her family gathered around the table, whose home is always clean and organized. The one who effortlessly makes the right decisions, who has never sat in the bathroom floor crying in defeat. The one who doesn’t understand what it means to feel lonely, being overwhelmed and unable to catch her breath. The one who has it all together…
The one that doesn’t exist…
She is an imposter.
Created from our perception of other mothers, by the visual comparisons of what we see (or think we see), out of our desire for flawlessness; we fashion the unattainable mom and set ourselves up for failure.
“But you just seem like you always have it together.”
Well, I don’t.
I am a real mom.
A real mom who has struggled to make herself get out of bed, even with the happy voices of her babies waiting excitedly for her in the background.
A real mom who makes parenting mistakes daily and finds herself repeatedly apologizing to her children; a mom that has spent hours of her time agonizing over whether or not she’s “ruining her kids.”
I am a real mom who has grappled with post-partum depression, anxiety attacks, fear, and illness; a mom so desperate to “be better” for her family that she tried everything just to be that mom.
But I cannot ever be that mom because I am a real mom…
A real mom who has been broken, tears streaming down her face as she tried to figure out how she would survive the day and bring order to a house of chaos.
I am a real mom who has yelled, wanted to quit, and locked myself in a room until I could gain composure.
I am a real mom whose children have seen her cry, who hasn’t always smiled at just the right second, or taken the time slow down and just enjoy the moment.
A real mom who has experienced being overwhelmed, feeling alone, and afraid; a mom who has been a scrambled mess and unable to see which way is up.
I am a real mom whose biggest critic and enemy can be herself, who is sometimes scared of letting others see me being…
That other mom…she just does not exist.
I am a real mom and just like you, the perfect mom…
The perfect mom God handpicked to raise our children–His children, here on earth.
The perfect mom called to help guide our kid’s hearts down the path God desires them to set foot upon in this life.
The perfect mom whose apologies teach humility and forgiveness, whose flaws reflect our deep need for Christ.
A perfect mom whose prayerful tears show Who it is we lean upon during difficult times, demonstrating perseverance through trials.
A perfect mom that portrays what it means to be authentic; instructing them how to use their own hardships to become compassionate and understanding.
The perfect mom who by her example leaves no doubt in the minds of her children that they are never alone sheltered in the arms of their Creator.
He chose the perfect mom…
A mom who is made perfect in Christ.
May we always seek to grow and flourish in the role God purposed each of us for and not desire to be the unattainable mom. As mothers, may we strive to be real with one another, continually sharing Truth and destroying Satan’s hold on our minds that we are isolated on our quest as the perfect mom.
What a beautifully written piece, so full of truth!
Thanks, P.! Love you.
I know you think you’re not “that mom”, but you are to me. You’re an inspiration of what kind mom, wife and woman I want to be. I’ve seen you in bad moments, and it hasn’t changed my mind.
You are so sweet, Alex! Come over the later part of our school morning someday. 🙂 But really, it amazes me how much we are inspired by other moms but are too critical of ourselves to see the strength and encouragement we offer to others. You are an inspiration to me, too. Love you.
Wow….yes……this is so true and beautifully written!
Thanks, Mary! I am glad you enjoyed it.
I needed this post today! Beautifully written and so encouraging to read.
Glad it encouraged you. I need this reminder often!
You made my eyes sweat. I needed this desperately. How many times we have talked about our failures together and still yet we continue to push. Thanks for this reminder that we are who we are and that is ok
We moms are a big help to each other! Glad we can talk through the hard things together. Love ya!
Thank you! Needed that! Gives me hope that I didn’t totally screw my kid up today, because it has been “one of those days”!!
I’m glad it helped you, Lisa! You are definitely not alone on “those days”…I have my fair share–you are a wonderful mom!
Been there —done that—we are all weak and make mistakes . Some are wrapped in a pretty packages and some are plain .we are judged by our heart., not by how pretty or smart we are. In.our weakness we become strong and in our mistakes we become intelligent. Relax and watch God work wonders in our lives. Great article Krista. You are a work in progress. Love you.
Thanks for your kind and wise words, Peggy. Love you!
I might need to read this every day….thanks for sharing Krysta.
You are welcome, Alisha! Same here!