I’m about to go on a rant. You’ve been warned.
There have been so many blog posts lately on how Moms don’t need to try to be SuperMom. You know the Mom I’m talking about: the mom who works a full time job, keeps the house sparkling clean and expertly decorated, has a Martha Stewart magazine worthy meal on the table every night at 6pm, not only takes care of the kids, but has them potty trained by 18 months and teaches them how to read by age 3, AND hand-designs the perfect birthday party decorations. She is crafty and creative. Her kids never eat anything remotely unhealthy and are happy to munch on veggies for snacks. Ok how often does that really happen? But there are plenty of Moms out there thinking they need to BE that Mom, and then there are several people telling them not to. Telling them they shouldn’t try keeping up with the Joneses and just relax. Just be “Mom,” make sure the kids are fed, maybe bathed, and just relax. (There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, but keep reading…)
I really loved a post written by Raising Godly Children called “Dear Mom, Jesus wants you to Chill Out.” I wholeheartedly agree with what the writer is saying about a Mom’s Job Description (Love God, Love your Husband, Love your kids…in that order). Another article by The Modest Mom Blog called “You Don’t Have to be SuperMom” hits the nail on the head, too. But again, while there is truth to the fact that Moms need to give themselves a break, there are soooo many people out there talking about how Mom’s shouldn’t do anything else other than take care of their kids’ basic necessities.
While I partially agree with some of the things they’re saying, I think it’s also giving some moms the wrong idea. Some Moms are getting the idea that they CAN’T be those things. That they SHOULDN’T be “SuperMom” at all. That in fact they’re a bad Mom for even trying to have a higher standard. There is more than one entire blog that talks solely about how all “SuperMoms” are fake. I’m not going to single any one post out, but you know the type I’m talking about.
I think being a SuperMom has to do with what’s in your heart instead of trying to impress other people.
For instance, I’ll talk about me for a little bit. Like the first post I mentioned (the one about Jesus wanting us to chill out) I try to prioritize my life (Key word being try):
- I put my faith in God first and try my hardest to be the woman, wife, and Mom that HE wants me to be.
- I try to please my husband next. I love him SO much, and I want to be the very best wife to him that I can be. I know I fall short of that mark plenty of times, but I sure do try! Right now it’s hard to devote a lot of time to Hubby because Little Man is so young and requires so much attention, but we try to squeeze in as much quality time together in the evenings as we can. It’s not much right now, but it will do until Little Man (and any of his future siblings) are a teeny bit older.
- Third comes the kiddos. We only have one and he’s plenty for now 🙂 The husband has been blessed with a well-paying job which means I have also been blessed enough to stay at home with the munchkin. Honestly, I never thought I would make a good Stay at Home Mom, but God had other plans for me. Little Man is a little ball of typical boy: dirt and endless energy, and he can certainly drain me of my own energy haha A typical day of taking care of his basic necessities can easily leave me unable to do anything else.
(I’m not perfect, and it doesn’t always work out this way, but that’s the plan anyways!) After all of that, if I have enough energy left, I get to do some other “extra” things that I enjoy! I’m OCD about my house being clean and tidy. I hate clutter and I actually enjoy organizing. I love to cook and try making new dishes. I love to bake even more, and I enjoy being crafty: sewing, quilting, scrapbooking, you name it. I love to read, and I love to write! I’ve really enjoyed putting this blog together because it gives me an outlet for all of the millions of thoughts running through my head every day.
Put all of that together and while I don’t fit the exact definition of my SuperMom that I described above, I might get kind of close on some days. Some days I’m not able to do any of those “extra” things. Especially if Little Man is having an unusually fussy day or there are other outside circumstances making things difficult, like the car breaking down or the kitchen flooding, or even a simple headache that knocks me out. Sometimes it takes all of my strength to get through my top 3 priorities. There are also times when I just need a day to lay around in my pajamas and be lazy (Like the kiddo allows that haha.) But you get my point. Sometimes it IS all you can do!
But I don’t do all of these “extra” things because I want to be better than any other Mom. I don’t do them because Jane does them and I think I need to be like her. I don’t do these things because Becky says I should do them. I do these things because I enjoy them and because God gave me the ability to make a decent meal for my family! He gave me an artistic soul, and he gave me an organizational mind. Those are my God-given strengths and talents. Most of them just so happen to fulfill my other priorities (like pleasing my husband who loves a good home-cooked meal, or organizing my son’s toys in such a way to keep him occupied and entertained.) Sometimes it can be hard to see a clear line between doing what you love because you love it and doing those things because that’s what other people want you to do (or you think that’s what other people want you to do.) In those times I try to make sure I’m not comparing myself to anyone else. I pray that I’m doing because God wants me to do, not because people want me to do, and I outsource my weaknesses instead of trying and failing to be good at everything. 🙂
Speaking of…know what I’m not good at? Teaching. Seriously, my Mom (who taught for 20+ years) has asked me more than once to please never become a teacher haha. She’s absolutely right. That is NOT one of my strengths. And while I’m not exactly thrilled with what’s going on in the public school realm, and we’re too broke to afford private school, I just think I would be doing my kids more harm than good if I tried to homeschool them. Another weakness: I’m impatient. I can almost guarantee that I won’t be the one to potty train Little Man or teach him how to read just because I don’t have enough patience to work through it with him. I might be able to stand it for a little while, but I’m not one of those Moms who sit with him next to his training potty and read him books for hours until he goes. You know who will be GREAT at that? Daddy! My husband is the most patient, easy-going person I’ve ever met! God has a funny way of putting two people like ourselves together 🙂 I’m also not so great at hosting or presenting my food. I love having friends and family over at my house because I’m a social bug and just like to be around people, but I’m not so great at being a hostess. And while I love to cook, 90% of the time my food tastes way better than it looks. I’m not great at the presentation aspect. I rarely have perfect hair days (but I take pictures when I do! haha,) and I’m not a makeup artist. I’ll be lucky if I can find a hair clip and my mascara looks decent in the morning. Instead of trying too hard to make everything look perfect, I have learned to just focus on my strengths and leave it at that!
So where am I going with this? Personally, I think you need to be the Mom YOU want to be. The Mom that God MADE you to be. If you are only able to go to work, come home and love on your kiddo for a few minutes before bedtime, there is NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT! If you are able to do it all, be the Martha Stewart of the real world, that’s awesome, too! If you’re somewhere in-between the two extremes, great! Use the gifts and talents God has given you to raise the best kids and be the best wife (or single Mom!) you can be. That is going to look different for every single Mom, and you shouldn’t feel guilty about what you can or cannot do OR how you choose to make that work in your family. Period.
You ARE SuperMom! You just might not be the same SuperMom that I am, and that is totally OK.