Not a Perfect Mom, but an Enough Mom.

I was going to be the Dr. Oz of parenting. I was going to be a guru, and then I realized that I would probably have to teach my kids to stop acting like wild raccoons at the grocery store. I don’t want to be negative but my kids are 10, 8,6, and 3. This is never going to happen for me.

You are not going to get advice from me on teaching toddlers to read, or getting your kids to stop gagging on their vegetables. I could however offer a step-by-step guide to watching them chew on the same vegetable for two hours, until you eventually give up and let them spit it out.

I am not very perfect at parenting, but I do love my kids enough to cuddle with them while they smell like pee, and I feel like that’s kind of a lot.

I’m not perfect, but I am enough…and so are you.

I enjoy them enough. 

Sometimes I smell their hair and I kiss their cheeks. I laugh at their jokes and I marvel that I am so blessed. Time stops in moments like that and everything is perfect and worth it.

Other times I am unsure if I will survive the hours of 4:00-8:30 pm, and if one can die of overexposure to bickering.

One can. I’m sure of it.

I enjoy them enough.

*

I am good enough at bedtime. 

Sometimes we read together. We snuggle on the couch and I read them Hardy Boys or Anne of Green Gables.

Other times I race through a bedtime song like I’m Alvin the chipmunk. I punctuate it with a kiss and I run outa there like it is a hostage situation. (Because it is). They cry out after me that their water is old, that their backs itch, and their underwear is twisted. This is when I hide behind the freezer door shoveling cookie dough ice cream into my mouth, wondering who will give up first…me or them.

I am good enough at bedtime. 

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*

I am together enough. 

We eat meals together. We love each other, and we laugh together.

I also lose all school papers even though they come in a convenient shade of neon and my daughter (age 6)  just asked me that, “if I’m going to come to her school today could I please wear ‘real’ clothes?” Then, on the way there (in case she wasn’t clear earlier) she asked me if I remembered my pants.

I am together enough.

*

I am fun enough. 

Sometimes I take every single thing too seriously. Like crumbs and clutter and teeth brushing. I have an out of body experience while I am lecturing them and I wonder if they will remember anything other than me being grumpy.

Other times I laugh so hard with my kids that my stomach hurts.  We play games, we go on hikes, and we dance in the living room in our pajamas.

I am fun enough. 

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*

I’m good enough at housekeeping. 

Sometimes I pick crumbs off of the carpet and throw them under my couch. Sometimes the downstairs bathroom causes me to imagine the Health Department coming to my house and posting a D- in my front window. I fantasize that they will shut us down and we will be forced to eat at our parents house every single night from now on.

That sounds wonderful.

Other times my house is vacuumed and my counters are clean. I’m playing coffeehouse radio on Spotify and there’s a candle burning.

 I am good enough at housekeeping. 

*

I am good enough at self care. 

Sometimes I cannot recall my last shower.  I go to the grocery store with a pillow imprint still on my face and a pair of sweats that the 18-year-old cashiers never wanted to know about.

Other times I wear makeup and I brush my hair…and nothing…not a thousand rabid hyenas can keep me away from a ladies’ night.

I’m good enough at self care. 

*

I am a good enough wife. 

Sometimes I’m a great listener and an epic encourager. We laugh together and dream together and he is truly my favorite person.

Sometimes he gets all the brunt of my frustration. He gets my snappy responses and my rolling eyes. Sometimes when he needs a pep talk I say, “Why did you do that?”

Which he loves, for the record.

I am a good enough wife.

*

I am good enough at nutrition. 

Sometimes I declare it a pizza night. We use paper plates and I share my love affair with ranch dressing.

Other times I buy large bags of organic carrots and force feed my children spinach. I plan meals and I worry if they’re eating too much sugar.

I am good enough at nutrition.

*

I love them enough.

I LOVE MY KIDS. I love them in all their messy, smelly, ridiculous, and hilarious glory.

I love them and I love them and I love them…

and that’s what makes everything else I do enough.

It makes everything you do enough too Mama.

We love them enough.

*

For more like this you can follow me here on Wonderoak, like my page on Facebook, and follow @wonderoakblog on Instagram! Photo credit belongs to the hubs @grahamsjohnston.

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37 thoughts on “Not a Perfect Mom, but an Enough Mom.

  1. Gobblefunkist

    I am so glad you realised how wonderful you are, early on. I have a 13 year old, and for 13 years, I had the exact same life as you (minus three of course), but have always felt like I was failing on all counts. Now I wonder if I would have had more fun if I hadn’t been so hard on myself.
    Love this post.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. April

    “Mommy can you wear real clothes!” That cracked me up! May every mom realize that they are good enough. There are way too many who put way too much pressure on themselves. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jules Faughnan

    Thank you so much! It took me until the day of my husband’s retirement party when one of my sons told the crowd that he finally realized who kept everything together while my husband was constantly away from home for work. At that moment, I realized I WAS enough and that the kids DO notice! Love your articles.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. ezekielo

    I Just Love your blog SOOO much!
    I am 31 with two beautiful kids (girl-3.5 and boy 15 months) and they are my crazy and my wonderful wrapped in sunshine with daily bouts of thunder. I run to your blog to laugh through all the insane that goes through my head as I try to learn what being a parent is all about….and it’s nothing like what I thought it was going to be about 😉 and it’s wonderful and lovely to hear your words and thoughts and know that I’m not going insane. There is another mama out there who thinks a lot like me but writes it out so that I don’t have to feel alone. So THANK YOU!
    I would love to curl up on my porch with a glass of wine, eating chocolate cookie dough if you ever want to get away 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. wonderoak

    Thank you my friend!! I feel the exact same way. As I right and people all over the world say “me too!” I feel a bit freer and less alone 😘! And thank you for the invite 💕!

    Like

  6. Mel Shiv

    On bad days, if I just remember to take 10 minutes and cry out to my Jesus, and be quiet and listen to Him, He looks at me and smiles and says, “You are enough, my beloved daughter.” And then I can let go of whatever failures I’m holding on to and face tomorrow with a fresh outlook and renewed hope.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Dottie Hill

    I wish your blog had been around when my children (now in their twenties and thirties) were young and I felt very inadequate. Of course, you were unborn or very young then. BUT, I am glad you are blogging now and my wonderful daughter-in-law reads your blog. THANK YOU for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. glitterflex

    Thank you so much for writing this.

    I am have been having some really rough days (weeks) beating myself up under the weight of my mom-worthiness, mixed in with a couple of good days. You’ve mastered the expression of all things mom felt in this letter. I appreciate it more than I can express.

    Thank you! ~Anne

    Liked by 1 person

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  10. Libby

    I’m not a mom but I am in my mid-30’s which is kind of the same. 😉
    Thank you for this. It was important for me.
    Also your writing style is my most favorite.

    Like

  11. Hannah

    I am a single mom of 3 wild boys. I go to drop them off at school, but I’m a little later than usual so there’s parents and students standing around everywhere. I pull up like a boss, youngest slams the door open and promptly falls out of the car, trash flies everywhere. Oldest and middle stumble out of the car, and are both rocking sweatpants because somehow in the last two days they managed to coat every pair of jeans they own in mud. Youngest is wearing middle’s jeans that he wore yesterday, both knees blown out. My car is visibly full of water bottles, snacks, trash, and mud no thanks to baseball, after school activities, and home renovation junk. My hair is in a messy bun, I’m wearing sweatpants and rubber boots, and all I can do is laugh. My sister says next time I should flick a cigarette butt out the window (I’d need to borrow one to do that), scream something unintelligible at my children, and then peel out in the elementary school parking lot.
    When your kid falls out of the car enveloped in a cloud of granola bar wrappers, stale pretzels, and water bottles right in front of all the cool moms, there’s no going back. I am officially the train wreck mom, lololol

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Monika J

    As a mom of 15 month old twins and a 2.5 year old singleton I want to thank you for this much needed post. I especially love the line: I am not very perfect at parenting, but I do love my kids enough to cuddle with them while they smell like pee, and I feel like that’s kind of a lot.

    PS Where did you get that amazing grey top? So flattering!

    Liked by 2 people

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  14. Eli Pacheco

    You are actually way more than enough, by being enough. Does that make sense? It’s not the victories but being in the battle, so to speak. Some parents don’t even care. Some care more about appearances. To recognize the rat race and the sweet moments and love and loathe and see the big picture, why we do this, as parents, well, it doesn’t provide the answers to why, or how, or how we could, better, but it leads to more questions, better questions. How will the children look back on these times? How is such plugged-in and imperfect parenting impacting the mates and friends and parents they’ll become?

    I definitely don’t know those answers. But, as you, I love being caught up in it all every day.

    Glad I found you through Eric’s Sunday Share.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Aimee

    This is such an amazing affirmation. Thank your for your thoughtful post!

    I just printed this out and I am going to make an activity out of it for our next mom’s group. Each mom can add in their own specific reasons why they are good enough. Hopefully they can post it where they will see it each day. Don’t we all need to know this daily?

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Merced Wright

    Ahhhh, once again I love your post! You make me laugh out loud and feel normal at the same time. Thanks for writing 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

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  18. lifeofabipolarmom

    Thank you so much for this. This is something I am constantly worrying about. Constantly beating myself up over whether I am doing enough of this or being enough for my kids. This has made me feel so much better. I hope you don’t mind, I shared it to my facebook page.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Sensibly Simple Mom

    OMG I love this! I love the way you write and express yourself. I mostly love that you don’t proclaim to be perfect. I have 4, 2, and 7 month old and PARENTING IS HARD. I feel so much pressure from friends and family to be perfect. I feel constant judgement. I recently started my blog because I needed to do something I enjoy and avoid being sucked into being a perfect mommy robot for everyone else.

    Liked by 1 person

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