Sometimes you worry about being a good mom. You worry if you're doing enough or if your kids love you or if you really have this mother thing figured out or if you can really do this mothering thing well or if your kids should do more or less or if you spend enough time with them or well, you just worry.
Sometimes I do to - I think it's just part of the amazing journey of mothering. I'm not going to write you a letter telling you to stop wanting to be a good mom. In fact, I think it's beautiful that you and I and other moms want to be good moms. Could you imagine the other? Not caring? Not wanting to be good for our kids? Not wanting to learn? Change? No. Wanting to be a good mom is a good thing. It really is - savor that, cultivate it, and don't run from it.
It's just easy to confuse worry with want and what one needs to do.
You see, brave mother - because that is what mothers really are - it can be easy to morph worrying if one is a good mom with really worrying if our mothering measures up to the the precedent of mothering that is vaguely set out there in this world. You know, those mother pressure worries. And many, ultimately that don't define you as a mother even though they may be good things. Eating organic, not getting fast food, kids being on the honor roll, education choices, color sorting toys, reading by this age, awesome looking living room, if you're spending enough time reading - all of those things which by themselves can be good - but hear me - those things do not define whether or not you are a good mom.
Did you hear that?
Motherhood isn't defined by where you shop for groceries, or what clothes your child wears, or when you send out those always late Christmas cards, or if you read the latest parenting books, or if you are wearing skinny jeans versus yoga pants, or if you eat only raw foods or if your minivan is the only one in the parking lot without a scratch or if your child can speak Italian by age three or if if if if if. Those parameters have no scale on the good motherhood scale.
Being a good mom isn't about doing it's often really about being.
Being the cheerleader. Being the fighter for them when no one seems to be listening. Being the one who gives of herself even when she feels like there is not much left to give. Being there in the middle of the night. Being the one who listens. Being there sitting in the car waiting for them to emerge from their class. Being the one who helps them pick out the right shirt. Being the rocker in the rocking chair when the pile of laundry is overflowing. Being the one who's mastered the art of counting to ten many times. Being the one who cooks lunches that no one likes but still smiling. Being the one who wants to be a good mom and keeps trying every single day.
Wanting to be a good mom is a beautiful thing, my friends. Wanting to be a good mom means you care, you love, and you are invested in those blessings that have the unique gift to be the only ones in the world to call you mom. I know it's tough. Our world screams at you that you should be doing so many things in the middle of this seems like forever but really happens in the blink of an eye mothering journey.
They need you - more than the next program, the next class, the latest clothes, the coolest apps, the best of the world's best. Remember, those things? They are good. But those things do not define good moms. The bottom line is that they need your lap to sit in at the end of the day. They need you to be the one to brush away the tear from their eyes and to tell them how much they matter. You see you have a gift - and that gift in being a good mom is to be the one to cultivate the truth in your child's heart about just how important they are, and how valuable their dreams are, and how much they matter.
You are a good mom.
Don't let ideals rob you from that. Learn, learn, learn from all of the amazing resources and voices out there. But remember if all of this media and information was stripped away and it was just you and them that is what truly matters - it's you being there for them, investing in their lives, teaching them truth, and simply loving them.
Be there and embrace today. Take your instagrams, laugh, and celebrate the true gift of motherhood.
And let go of that worry.
Moms are awesome. Yoga pants and all.
to subscribe to finding joy by email - click HERE.
click dear mom letters to read more encouraging letters for moms
thank you to Hannah Nicole for providing these excellent images
Images and original content are sole property of Rachel Martin and may not be used, copied or transmitted without prior written consent.