Oh honey, I am so not that type of mom and that is okay. You may not be either.
This phrase took me a long time to be able to handle in my heart and my brain. I would see those mothers who “have it all together” with their perfectly Pinterest worthy cupcakes, children in matching clean outfits, and everyone looks so HAPPY. I used to stare at them and dream that I could be that mom. I felt that there was something wrong with me that even though I dreamed of being that mom, the reality was I was never wired to be like them and it was never in my plan to be.
I was actually the mom who had to make sure everything was in a calendar or I would forget. The mom who would be surprised when her daughter would walk in the door an hour early because I did not realize they got out of school early that day. The mom who bought the damn cookies from Kroger instead of slaving in a kitchen for hours after working a full day and cooking dinner that evening.
I was the mom of a girl who let her play in the dirt. Who let her daughter have a boy best friend who they would wrestle like cousins with. I was the one who gave up on ever seeing her daughter wear a matching outfit in her entire life after she started picking out her own clothes. Just because both your shirt and your pants are pink but different shades, does not necessarily mean they go together.
I was the mom who let her daughter buy Gray’s Anatomy when she was in seventh grade because she already had aspirations of becoming a forensic anthropologist from watching Bones with me. I was also the mom who let her daughter decide in eighth grade that she wants to go to NorthWestern after high school and started working right then on how to help her child accomplish that. I taught her how to shoot a gun, the basics of first aid, and that sometimes you have to weigh the decision on if being upset at a person should mean you stop being friends with them or not.
I am the mom of a teenager who is letting her define her own path. To let her fight her own battles when she chooses but stays on the sidelines for just-in-case purposes. The parent who says it is okay to fail as long as you tried but do not let that stop you. Keep pushing and practicing until you get it right. The mom who gets her daughter a Chucky doll because that is her favorite horror movie character. The one who passed down the love of fast cars, hockey fights, and 90’s country to her old soul of a daughter.
I beg of you other mothers to not compare yourselves to the likes of other moms. For one, they may not be as perfect or put together as you may think. You would be amazed as to what goes on behind those perfectly painted and wreath hung front doors you see in their pictures. There could be Baileys in that Yeti cup of coffee and you will never know it. For two, it is as simple as you are not them. You were made to be the perfect parent of your own little people, not their little people. God knew what he was doing when he made you their mom.
It is also perfectly fine to have your own life, friends, dreams, and aspirations while helping your child in their path. Often times, we forget about our own lives as we help those around us. Your children need to see you leading by example. They need to see you chasing your own dreams, working hard to meet your own goals, celebrating in the successes and failures, and taking the time to relax and repair yourself. Remember even Wonder Woman needs to sleep from time to time.
Now that my one and only offspring in ending her freshman year of high school, I am okay with being the mother I am. She is growing up to be an amazing young woman who I am fiercely proud of. I know I am far from perfect and that is okay as well. As long as I mother to the point that she will be a kind and humble human when she begins her own journey into this world, I would call my parenting a success. That is all we ever want out of motherhood anyways.