We moms can be pretty hard on ourselves. Our expectations run high. We expect ourselves to remain patient, to give our best to our children and partners, to nurture our parents and siblings, and to be the best confidants we can to our girlfriends.
Motherhood is Hard Work
Trouble is that time runs short. While you are driving your kid to a birthday party, you forget to call your Mom back. Your son’s looming Latin test means skipping that treasured catch-up time at the Moms’ Night Out. Oh, and don’t forget the hubs. He’s grumpy because you can’t squeeze in the next episode of Homeland.
My perfectionist tendencies used to allow these snafus to drive me crazy. Lately, I’m becoming more relaxed, realizing that there is not time for everything NOW in life, but that there will be more time later, and that my true friends will wait for me. I look at my day as a batting average, remembering the advice of parenting expert Julie Ross of Parenting Horizons. If you get it right seventy percent of the time, Julie says, you’re doing pretty darn good.
Last Sunday began at 7am and wrapped up at around 11pm. After helping with homework, I packed my two girlies into the car and headed to Tribeca where Annaliese attended the birthday party of a good friend. I adore the mom. She’s actually one of my heros: warm, lovely, charming and just a great friend. She generously invited Marielle to participate in the party, which allowed me to witness both girls in creative heaven and to catch up with the host and other moms.
After watching the adorable girls paint their own canvases, I headed upstairs to the empty bar area. There, I ended up sharing half a glass of wine with a fellow mom I really like but never get to talk to. When the party ended, I drove through the weekend traffic with the girls to Randalls Island, and then ran between two fields to watch them. Once we made it home, I helped Lachlan map out an English essay on To Kill a Mockingbird. He’s getting more mature and wanted to do more on his own. Fine by me. One hot cup of tea and I collapsed into bed.
Here’s the goofy hat I wore around Randall’s Island. I’m super fair-skinned and trying to avoid sun-spots. That’s your 40’s for you, mamas.
All in all, it was a pretty packed day. Nothing about the day felt complete since it was composed of a series of brief encounters. But the brief moments I got to share with some amazing people left me grateful for living my frantic, rich life. Sometimes these encounters are all we can fit in. But they can still sustain you.
Stop Being Hard on Yourself
When you extract the good out of what you get, you feel happy. When you’re delighted with what comes — versus always wishing for more — you’re content. The old “glass is half full” saying becomes more true as we get busier, doing more of some things and less of others. You have to be grateful for the things you get to do more and not fret over what you get to do less. That’s parenting.
So roll with it, mamas. Take it for what it is and be as happy as you can. Don’t grumble over how things used to be, thrive in your own present life. Floppy hat and all!
Hope you have a great weekend and see you back soon this week for some fun content on CloudMom.
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