Since the day Kylie was born, I knew I wouldn’t be the perfect mom. But of course, I would give it my all no matter what.
She is getting ready to turn 4 years old in November and some times I can’t believe it! Yes, I will have a 4 year old! During these last 3.5 years of her life, we have been through a lot – many happy memories to be shared along with a few mishaps and disappointments. Every day, I am reminded of why I wake up each day thankful. She has not only made me stronger as a person, but she has taught me that I will never be the perfect mom.
I will never be the perfect mom that exists in some of these fairy tale stories and movies simply because they don’t exist in real life. As cliche as that sounds, it is true. We fuss and we have disagreements (yes, I have disagreements with a toddler), I make her cry, we are attached at the hip and we have the most fun. We, as mothers take the most responsibility when it comes to having a child. They were inside of our stomachs for 8-9 months! We, as mothers do the most for them (in my opinion), whether it be giving them a bath, preparing meals and feeding them, doing their hair or getting them dressed, making sure we get them to their recitals, appointments or soccer games on time. We do it all! BUT… there are days where we are unable to fulfill all of their needs and wants. There are days where we can’t cook them a full meal so they end up eating cereal for dinner, there are days where they are late to school or their hair isn’t combed so they’ll have to deal with looking like a zombie from The Walking Dead. There are days where we are so caught up with work, that we won’t have time or energy to play or read them a bedtime story. We, as parents have those imperfect days and it’s okay.
I remember the first time Kylie told me I didn’t love her. It broke my heart. I didn’t know where I went wrong, what I had done or didn’t do. I was working from home that day so I really had no time to do anything. I didn’t make breakfast but instead, she got a bowl of cereal. It was 12pm and we both haven’t showered yet. The room was a mess and it was so hard for me to concentrate that I noticed I was getting a little frustrated with her playing in the room. I asked her why she thought I didn’t love her and she told me, “because you don’t play with me.” I was hurt, but only because she really thought I didn’t love her. I took a break from my work, and asked her to climb into the bed with me. I explained to her that I had to finish up some work and we will play later. I don’t think she took it in that well or maybe she didn’t understand. But I reassured her that I loved her very much and I am sorry. You cannot get away with anything with my child unless you say you are sorry, LOL!
That moment made me realize that I am not perfect and I am that not-so-perfect mom. I make mistakes, I let work take over my life at times, I get frustrated with her, I scold her and I give her cereal for dinner. But the amount of love I show her, the amount of time we spend together outside of my work life – playing at the park, playing pretend at home, letting her help me in the kitchen or at the store or the precious moments we have painting our nails together, defeats my imperfections. It defeats the fact that I will not always have it together.
I have days where I am completely mentally checked out due to personal or work related stress. There are times where I have about 10% energy left for the day and I will decline a bedtime story. She may not understand these types of days now, but I am sure she will later. It is tiring being a mother (or active parent in general). We go to work and come home to work another shift by being a parent. Being a parent doesn’t have an on/off switch – and it doesn’t matter how tired you get or how much time you think you do not have. She will later realize that I do what I can and I put my all into what I do for her. I go to work every day so that I can take her out, buy her necessities and new toys she asks for. Even on the days we may disagree on something or where I get upset because she hasn’t cleaned up her toys, I hope she realizes that despite of all of my imperfections, that I love her more than life itself. I love everything about her. I will forever be attached to her as she is to me. And everything that I do, it’s because of her.
Even though I may not have it all together in other areas of my life at this moment, I will always make sure I get it together for her – close to perfect or not.
The Not-So-Perfect Mom