When I became pregnant at 23 years old I was scared. I had only dated my now husband for a short period of time, I wasn’t married, and I was so scared of the judgement. My life at the time consisted of drinking, partying and being completely careless of my youth. It didn’t seem harmful at the time, I was having fun, but it all came to a halt when life began to grow in my belly.
I gave birth to a 6 lb 13 oz baby girl with a full head of hair one week before Christmas. Eventually, her dad and I got married, not because it was the right thing to do, but because we wanted to. Life has since changed for me and what seemed like such a tough time turned out to be what saved me.
I love my daughter Mia with all my heart and soul. She is very smart, loves animals, is such a great helper and she seriously has a heart filled with all the good things this life has to offer. Often, I feel like I’m failing as a mom because I’m not like other moms. You know, "other moms" seem to have more patience, more fun, more resources, etc. But this weekend, I realized more than ever, that I was chosen to be her mama. It was not by accident that God paired us together. And while sometimes it may seem like I’m failing her, I’m not. That is just a lie.
Ya’ll know I suffer from anxiety and it has taken most of the fun and free-spirited side of who I use to be. So, you’ll see that I say no to things, I grab her hand a little closer, I cringe when she tells me she wants to save all the animals (even the big ones) because of my own fear. When I see her self confidence sink in, I quickly want to save the day. So, I constantly correct her when she says she is not good at something. I tell her to at least try. I tell her to conquer her fears. And then I wonder, am I being too pushy? Am I forcing confidence on her?
And then moments will happen, where I blurt out how I feel extra squishy (not always that politely) and she tells me, “Mommy, you are perfect.” I’ll tell her I can’t do something, and she will correct me and ask me, “What do you always tell me?” I feel horrible for not practicing what I preach, but at the same time I’m happy because I know she is listening.
This weekend while away at a Mother Daughter Retreat held by our church, we had some time to work on some things. Yes, we had tons of fun, but there were moments where we had to really help each other out.
“Mommy, conquer your fears. That’s what you tell me.”
Gulp. I wanted to cry.
At one point, we ventured off just her and I. She wasn't feeling her best and I so desperately wanted to “fix it”. While I knew I couldn’t, what I could do was show her a side of me she’s not used to. You guys, I suggested we play basketball. That may not sound like a BIG thing, but for me it is. Ya’ll, I have no idea how to play, but I knew it would distract her from what was bothering her. So, we spent the next 30 minutes running down the court, laughing and giggling. It was there where we shared a magical moment and even though we got to experience amazing activities such as horse back riding, zip lining, water activities, that part of our trip turned out to be the most special for me.
I know I’m not the only mom who constantly feels like she’s failing.
What we are doing to raise our boys and girls is important and every sacrifice that goes unnoticed, really doesn’t. You can not fail at a job you were created to do. So, while some days we get the mom thing down, some days we probably won’t. You’ll forget picture day money. (Yep, that was me this year.) Or you will look to your left and right and feel that mom is better, or that mom has it down. But that mom doesn't exist. I promise you.
I’m a Rachel Hollis fan and a month or so ago, she released a video that left me in tears. Well, it made its way back to me earlier this week. It was perfect timing to watch again and remind myself that I was chosen to be Mia’s mama and every fear that tries to enter my mind and heart is a total and complete lie. I’m doing the best I can, and I can see how my daughter is learning from me. Heck, she’s coaching me now!
This video is so good. Please, please, take a few minutes to watch it. I hope it blesses you and reminds you that perfection doesn't exist, your babies love you, and you can NOT fail at a job you were CREATED to do.
Keep up the good work mama. You are doing a GREAT job!