I sat down and tried to think of one. I really did. But no matter how much I rack my (albeit sleep deprived) brain, I cannot for the life of me think of another job in which you don’t know for sure if you’re good at it.
Because one day, everything is in harmony: the kids are sweet and thoughtful and helpful; the baby is sleeping through the night; your little boy tells you “you look even more beautiful-er today” and your daughter is known for her bad ass river dancing and negotiating skills around the kindergarten yard.
And then you let them stay up, like 15 minutes past their bedtime on a Thursday night b/c they’re so stinking cute and, well, they hate going to sleep and as a direct result the next day, they all wake up at 5am. Your three-year-old throws a tantrum in front of every grumpy elderly person in the grocery store; your daughter has a sudden fear of one-armed people and freaks out in ‘shark group’ at school — b/c, well, you never know; and your baby (human, not shark) bit the babysitter because he’s teething, and now you’re worried she might quit, because, well, one quit for a lesser reason than that.
A rough day with the tiny humans can make you feel like you’re the shittiest mom on the planet.
When your job title is “Mommy”, the bonuses are in kisses and I love yous, and the promotions are when your tiny person graduates to the next phase of their life. But when they reach that next level, you really just want them to stay your baby because even on the hard days, it’s the most beautiful thing you’ve ever done.
And you know what? You’re doing a great job. Because you care-enough-to-care-about wether or not you’re a good mommy… you are a good mommy. Don’t forget that, and don’t forget to enjoy your journey.
The best Mompliment by far that a mama can hear, whether it’s from her spouse, her own mother or the neighbor is you’re doing a great job. But the most important person she needs to hear it from is herself.
Happy Mother’s Day to moms of newborns to senior citizens — we’re all united in this journey. And we’re also united in that thing that makes you forget the tantrums and tell your future daughter-in-law that your children were perfect angels, always.
Let’s encourage one another and expand our villages. Take care of yourselves and be encouraging to other moms. There’s no one way — there’s your way. Do what works for ya. And remember that you’re doing a great job.
Pass it on.
Like this story? It’s been a year since a stranger called me “big” when I was 9 months pregnant. At Mother’s Day Brunch. Here’s how I handled it.