First off- my unsolicited product review: Moon dough is MESSY!! Yes, it never dries out. Yes it has a fancy barn that molds little animals if you do it right. Yes it was exciting. And YES it was ALL OVER my floor. Luckily it was pretty easy to clean up (with the vacuum) but not really something I'm super excited to get out again- (but it might not be too bad next time- most of it is in the vacuum!)
Now, on to the real post.
Sometimes when you are talking to someone, or sending an e-mail, you discover a kernel of truth in something you just said.
I was e-mailing a blog friend the other day and told her, "I'm trying to forgive myself for not being the mother that I thought I would be."
I have thought about that over and over in the past week.
I did a lot of babysitting in my time. I took psychology in school. I had a mother. I thought that was probably enough to prepare me for motherhood. No one told me that I should probably get a degree in child rearing because my biology degree would do zero for my parenting skills!
I always wanted to be a mother. I didn't bother applying for Med School because after taking the MCAT and seeing how intense all these other people were, I realized that I really did just want to be a mom and I should let someone who had a much greater passion than I did take my "seat". (assuming I even got in- lol)
I knew I would be a mother, I hoped I could be a mother, and then.... I became a mother.
This was not exactly what I signed up for. I was not prepared for this. And ever since I had my first baby over 9 years ago- I have been at war with myself.
I get frustrated that it's not easy, like I thought it would be. I get discouraged that some days I don't even like it very much (I should qualify this a little by saying that it's mostly the "home" part of the stay-at-home mom gig that I'm not always loving- housework and me are NOT BFFs!). I feel like a failure because so many others seem to accomplish so much when I do so very little.
Sometimes I get so frustrated- I even say these things out loud.
And then, something happens. Instead of judgement and scorn- I get nods of agreement. Instead of shock and horror- smiles and maybe even a few tears. Instead of put-downs - sweet, kind and gentle women reach down and lift me up. Sometimes they just put me on my feet- and other times, they carry me on their shoulders a little while, until I'm ready to stand.
And at that moment I realize that I am not alone. And that even if maybe I'm not the supermom I thought I would be- crafting with my children and singing and always smiling and fresh cookies after school and vacations and swimming and on and on. Even if I'm not really even very close to the image of the mother I thought I would be- maybe the mother I am is enough.
And as that realization hits right between the eyes, I realize that by myself I will never measure up to the ideal mother I thought I would one day be, but if I take God's hand and let Him lead me, and with a few encouraging pats on my behind by dear friends and family- together- God and me and the women who surround me- all of us together will be the mother I always thought I would be-and that will be more than enough.