Thursday, May 9, 2013

The Measure of a Good Mom

What is it that makes us as moms believe we're are doing well based on how our house looks, what we're cooking for dinner, and which projects we've completed today off of Pinterest?  Since when are those the markers of a good mother?  At what point did we decide that she with the most creative dinners, snacks, crafts, or blog wins the Awesome Mom award?  And why?  What does ANY of that have to do with being a good mother?

What if our measure for being a good mother were based more on how we treat our children, how we speak to them, and the time we spend with them?  What if we stopped comparing ourselves to other moms that we "see" on Facebook?  Afterall, who puts only the crappy stuff about the life on Facebook?  Mostly we just see the exciting and positive aspects of other peoples' lives reflected on social forums.  It's not that it's fake, it's just not the whole story.

While there's nothing wrong with doing all those fun Pinterest-y things and having an orderly home (I actually think this is very important), we can get so consumed with trying to "do it all" (because it seems everyone else can), that we miss out on some really great moments.  Today is the only day that my children will be this age.  Tomorrow they will be bigger.  Smarter.  Crazier.  Different.  What is it that I really want my children to remember about today?   That mom was a great cleaner?  That the towels smelled fresh?  That lunch was served promptly at noon?  Or would I rather them remember today by facts like how mom left a mess in the kitchen so we could all eat snack together on the back patio?  That we whipped up a batch of popsicles together?  Read a fun new story?

What if we all stopped trying to "do it all", and focused more on capturing those special moments where we can just be with our kids?  What if we used our cleaning and cooking and experimenting as a time to teach and train our children by doing them at a slower pace while our kids participate in the fun with us?  What if we stopped comparing ourselves to other moms but chose, instead, to support and encourage other moms in their lives, whether with their children, with their creative pursuits, or any other number of things that matter to them?

I love Pinterest.  I love being creative.  I love having a clean home.  Trying new things.  New recipes.  Blogging.  BUT, if ever any of those cause me to push my children away during a time where they need me, it's not worth it.  The mess can wait.  The project can remain unfinished.  My children need to remain a priority and need to know that I fully believe that they are more important than any other thing I might need to "do".

Parenting is a full-time job.  I want to do it well, enjoy it, and not regret the decisions I've made along the way (though I'm sure there will always be some!).  Here's to being the best mom I can be!



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