Wednesday, December 5, 2012
When I Fail as a Mom
So, I had a bad day. I should say WE had a bad day...the baby and I. My husband too. It was just one of those days where everything was off, not to mention that one of the most mortifying experiences I have ever had also happened today. I let my baby fall off the couch. I was terrified...horrified...shocked...embarrassed. The baby was totally fine, just for your information. About three minutes later he was back to laughing and smiling and pulling my hair. But I still can't shake this guilty feeling. I snapped at my husband. Later on, I tried feeding the baby something new and he puked. He's now upstairs taking his fourth nap of the day, because he is so tired from being up most of the night the past few nights because he's teething. I haven't had a break, or seen a friend in what seems like a really long time. I'm starting to feel desperate. I'm starting to feel like well...a failure. A total failure. A big, fat, total failure. And the thing that is not making all of these things any better is that since I've become a mom, I have developed the chronic issue of comparing myself to other moms, and other wives. It seems to me that all the moms around me are just a whole lot...saner. More put together...less of a basket case. They seem so much more graceful than me. I know that I'm on the outside looking in, and there is no way to know whether or not those moms are also having a baby-falling-off-the-couch kind of day. But in my mind I've built up these other moms to be the kind of mothers and wives who sit down to have some quiet time in prayer with the Lord while baby naps (whilst I lie on the couch feeling defeated that it took me an hour to get the baby down), who manage to actually cook something for dinner (instead of sending their husband out for a pizza), and who actually have more than one child to boot (while at the moment I'm really freaking out that even though I want oh-so-many more children, I might not be able to handle it). When I think about all this honestly, I realize that this mystical, holy, perfectly put together, creative, beautiful woman I am imagining in my head is just a fantasy that I've concocted. Does she exist? Probably...maybe somewhere. But I don't know her. I'm just imagining that every other mom must be doing so much better than me. I knew that when I became a mom I would probably make a lot of mistakes. I know that this is only the beginning of the very many mistakes I will make in the future. But for the moment I need to focus on two things: Keeping my baby off the couch, and making sure that I'm holding myself up to the standard that Christ is setting for me, and not trying to achieve perfection in motherhood, and as a wife, which is, of course impossible. I need to remember that this is a season, that my baby (and future babies, God willing) will not be this small forever, so I need to hold on to the joy that comes with being the mother of a little one. I need to take a deep breathe, and move on...not sweat the small stuff, and forgive myself when I make bigger mistakes. There's no such thing as a perfect mom, and wife. When I make it to heaven, God willing, I know that everything that is lacking in me will be perfected. For now, as I spend my days taking care of my husband and son (even if it feels like some days all I can do is just make sure that we are all fed and clothed), I know that God is offering me the grace I need, I just need to accept it. And stay away from pinterest, facebook, and any and all mommy blogs that make me feel like I'm the only mom who has days like these.