Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Being a Mom in Today's World

Being a mom in today's world is tough. So is being a dad. And a kid. Heck, it's just tough being!

I don't know what it was like back when my own mom or even my grandma was a younger mom; I imagine they had their own challenges of outside influences, experts, friends, family, etc.

I really can't make comparisons, but today's world is so full of the Internet and bloggers and social media and experts and all of these outside influences that it just gets so overwhelming!

As moms, we want to be perfect. Have the perfect marriage, the perfect kids who are well-mannered, excel at school and sports, have the perfectly clean home, drive the perfect car to the perfect preschool.

We want the perfect marriage with the perfect husband. Perfect kids who are well-mannered and excel at everything. We aspire to drive the perfect car to the perfect preschool, then home to the perfect home on the perfect street in the perfect neighborhood. All the while having your clothes and makeup just perfect.

Because, as we all know, all the other moms are keeping tabs on us and tsk-ing when we're not perfect.

What I just wrote up there? Yeah, that pretty much sums me up in a long run-on sentence. I struggle with perfectionism on a daily basis. And I fail to be perfect all.day.long.

It's a nasty, nasty battle to be in with myself.

I've been a mom for almost four years and just this past summer, I've finally started to let go of that myth of perfectionism. I'm not letting myself feel guilty when I am just human to my family and not this make believe supermom who looks great, feels great, can blog about her beautiful home, while homeschooling her kids, and runs an at home business, but still finds time to work out, make dinner, have coffee with friends, and shower on a regular basis.

Okay, I'm not letting myself feel as guilty. It's a struggle for me, but I'm moving forward.

My house frequently looks like a bomb went off, our love seat has been the kids' closet for about 6 months, the bathrooms aren't cleaned on a regular basis, and I can't manage my time to save my life.

I've started going back to the basics. I'm relying on God to get me through those times when I start feeling the need to be supermom. Every morning before I get out of bed, I take just a few moments to thank Him for a new day, and ask for grace and patience with myself. He's been my go-to, my rock, my guidance. As He should be.

Which leads me to this article I read on our local news: Moms Popping Pills to Be Better Parents. Read it if you get a chance. For me, it's a sad story. But a very true story to so many moms out there. It's a true story to moms I know personally. 

Relying on drugs (prescription or otherwise) is not the way to deal with life. It's not worth it. Common sense says so. The effects of it later on can be so bad.  Using drugs to become supermom is just another way to check out of reality. Sure, you may be able to keep a clean home, never forget a kids water bottle or diaper, but are you really there for your family? There are other ways to cope with the stress besides Xanax and Adderall.

Moms (and dads, too!) give yourself a break. You don't need to be perfect. You don't need that perfectly clean home or perfectly clean kids. Remember what is important in this life. Your faith, your precious husband, and those precious kids. They all need you healthy, mentally, physically, and emotionally!

So tell me, do you struggle with being a mom in today's world? How do you cope?