Dear exhausted mom,
In a world of DIY mommy bloggers and color-coordinated family photos on social media platforms, mommies everywhere are under too much pressure to be perfect mothers, raising perfect children.
When I was pregnant with my daughter, almost nine years ago, I used to spend most of my free time reading books about pregnancy and parenthood. With all that reading and my teaching experience, I was convinced I was going to be a perfect mom to a perfect child. The first night home with my daughter was my first indicator that motherhood was not going to be easy, to say the least.
With all the parenting books out there and the “perfect” family photos online, it is tempting to feel inadequate and imperfect as mothers.
I am here to tell you the following:
Don’t be too harsh on yourself.
It is completely fine if your house looks messy even though you have been cleaning and tidying all day.
It is completely fine if you did the laundry, but did not have time to fold the clothes and put them away.
It is completely fine if you fed your children leftover food, or if you had to order some pizza.
It is completely fine if you put your child in front of the TV for a few minutes, so you could use the toilet.
It is completely fine if you went to the supermarket all by yourself just so you could get out of the house for an hour.
It is completely fine if you gave your child a piece of chocolate and had a piece (or two) yourself.
It is completely fine if you promised yourself not to yell at your children, but after a long day, you raised your voice.
It is completely fine if you spent your day in sweatpants and then went to bed in them because you were too tired to take a shower.
It is completely fine if you asked your husband to take care of the children, so you could get an extra hour of sleep in the morning.
Years from now, many of the things we worry about won’t matter.
Years from now, our children won’t remember that the house was messy sometimes; they will remember how much fun they had there.
Years from now, our children won’t remember that there was an unfolded pile of laundry; they will remember the pretty clothes we bought them for their birthday.
Years from now, our children won’t remember that there was a day we did not have time to cook; they will remember their favorite meals with the family.
Years from now, our children will remember how they felt growing up; they will remember the warmth, security, and love that a mom’s hug promises.
Some days are harder than others, so don’t be too harsh on yourself.
Stop comparing yourself to “online mommies.” Most of the time they have similar days to yours, but they only post the “perfect” moments.
Finally, remember this: It is completely fine to feel exhausted.