That’s just it. The perfect mom. How are you supposed to even live up to that? How are you to compete with all the other mama’s out there? As you lay your head down at night, how can you really be satisfied that the house is spotless, the child(ren) are happy and full and now fast asleep, your husband has never been more in love with you and you’ve had the chance to regroup with a little ‘me’ time? How do you even begin to find that balance?
The answer is you can’t. There is no such thing as a perfect mother. You can definitely be a great one, an amazing one, a caring one, but to be perfect holds a whole lot more unnecessary pressure on yourself that you really can’t juggle on top of everything else.
This has been something that I have struggled with in being a new mum. And I still do. Naturally, as a mother, you want what’s best for you child(ren) and will do anything to ensure that they get the best start in life. So, obviously we attend to our baby’s needs and wants foremost. That is the most important. And nothing much else was happening for us in the beginning to be honest. We weren’t on a perfect routine, we weren’t even making it out of the house some days, we weren’t getting any housework done, and we certainly weren’t getting any sleep. Because I can be a perfectionist at times, this absolutely killed me. I would stress about not getting the littlest of things done. I remember in the midst of it all, my house was dirty, I hadn’t just sat down with my husband for what felt like days, and I was so sleep deprived I was afraid I would fall asleep after just blinking, I then hit what would be one of my darkest hours. All because I was trying my hardest to be a perfect mama. I remember I had just put my daughter down for a sleep, and it was the first time I could that whole week. She was the most restless I have ever seen her and was going through a period where she only liked to sleep in my arms or on my chest. (I’m not complaining. I love my newborn snuggles, but it gave me a lot of time to sit there with her on my chest and just think about what I still needed to get done.) It was probably close to 11pm and I was trying to get all her bottles cleaned, sterilised and ready to go before she woke up probably in only a matter of minutes. I hadn’t slept in weeks. I was so incredibly exhausted and it was taking every last part of me to do these bottles. Then, I don’t even know how, but I managed to burn my whole hand pretty badly. I had never been in so much pain. (Ok, thats a lie. Have you tried labour?). Now I couldn’t use my hand at all. How was I going to try and do everything that I still needed to do with one hand stuck in a bowl of cool water. There was no way I could take it out without feeling like it was on fire. And for that moment, I could not bare the whole responsibility of being a mother. I didn’t like who I had become. I was obsessed with being perfect and it just was taking a huge toll on me and our little family.
And that’s when I realised something that I should’ve known long before. This is when my whole perspective changed. I know my Heavenly Father was there during these moments and as my heart filled with comfort, I realised that there is no such thing as a perfect mama. We can try and try and try but we will never reach it. We can truly be the best we can, and that is enough. We don’t need to hit perfection. We don’t need to have everything on our ‘to-do’ list ticked off. I feel like social media plays a big part in all of this. I believe there can be an enormous unwritten pressure on mothers out there if they let it be. Especially in the blogging community. And I am guilty of this. All we see are the ‘perfect’ moments; the perfect recipe, the perfect photos, the perfect diet, the perfect parenting book, the perfect status update, the perfect living room, the perfect party decorations, and the perfectly planned children’s activities. But this isn’t real. This isn’t what being a mother is all about. It’s not even close!
If we truly are loving our husband and child(ren), giving them all of our time, that is as perfect as they come. If you are doing the best you can, and your house is a mess or you haven’t showered in days, then that’s ok because you know you are blessed. You know who you are and for me, this allows me to find great strength in what I do for my little family. I can see that as I trust in myself, I really am doing so much better than I think. This is what being a perfect mother is all about. So let this be a little reminder to you, that what you are doing is good enough! It’s all your family needs. And the fact that you are worrying about how much of a perfect mother you may not be, shows exactly of how much of a great one you are.