I'm seven years into motherhood and the only thing I know for sure is that I am not the perfect mom. I do have perfect moments, though, and I am grateful for each and every one of them. Those perfect little instances in our lives is what allows us to forgive ourselves for the times we are not quite in the "parenting zone." When I am in the zone, there's nothing quite like it. I have patience, I am mindful and aware, I am happy and revel in the deep love I have for my children. But let's not kid ourselves, daily routines, illnesses and hard times prevent us from being 100 per cent, 365 days of the year.
On this day, at this moment, perfection.
I don't know one mom who isn't doing her absolute best. Just because one mother chooses natural childbirth and another chooses a C-section, it doesn't make one mom better than the other. Just because one mother's children are in bed by 7:30pm and another mother's children are in bed at 9pm, it doesn't make one mom better than the other. Just because one mom's kid gets into Harvard and another mom's kid goes to community college, it doesn't make one mom better than the other.
Parenting and all the choices that come into play are a gift. What works for one family may not work for another. What makes one family happy doesn't necessarily make another family happy. The only thing that makes any of us truly happy is living our lives with our family as we were meant to. One family's values may be 180 degrees away from another family's values.
There's a quote by Jill Churchill which I have reminded myself of often since my sweet boys were babies, “There's no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” I believe this in my core and when I look at myself and other mothers this way, I have compassion for myself and I can have compassion for every mother out there.