Tuesday, March 04, 2008

You're a Good Mom!!!

This morning I spoke for a MOPS group and, in addition to the fun of seeing a friend from college - whom I haven't seen for 15 years! - I enjoyed my interaction with the women in attendance.
After I finished speaking, I joined one of the discussion groups to talk about the ideas I had presented and we had some great conversation. There was one topic that came up, which I want to share with you here.
One of the women at the table said she could really relate to me when I shared about the time in my life when I thought every other mom in my MOPS group had it all "together." When I thought I was the only one who struggled - the only one who wasn't perfect.
I spent too many years feeling that way, hiding the truth about who I was and the fact that I was struggling. Those were not good years, and I was glad to hear this woman say she realizes she is not alone in her struggle. We all agreed we need each other for support.
As we talked about the fact that our kids generally think we are "good moms," we also agreed it isn't our kids who are holding the standard of perfection over our heads. No, that high ridiculous standard is one we put out there for ourselves.
Honestly, think about it.
Though your kids might compare you to "Timmy's mom" who lets him have candy for breakfast, watch TV for five hours every day, never makes him take a bath, and gives him ice cream whenever he wants it, when was the last time they compared you to Mary Poppins, Carol Brady, or June Cleaver? When was the last time one of them said to you, "Mom, you need to try harder. You simply are not measuring up to my standards." They want "fair" (and I could spend a few posts talking about "fair"...but not today!) not perfection. I don't think our kids have the same unrealistic standards for us as moms as we hold over ourselves, and I am willing to bet - if you asked your children - they would tell you they think you are a good mom.
While each of the moms with whom I was having this discussion agreed with our assessment, one mom said, "Still, it's nice to hear every now and then that you're doing a good job."
Everyone agreed with that sentiment.
So, Mom...because I know you love your children, because I believe you are doing your best - even though you aren't perfect, because your kids love you and need you and you are caring for them by the grace of God, please recieve these words from my heart to yours: You're a good mom!!!

Resist the voice in your head which would say, But, Karen, you don't know how upset I got with them last night. You don't know how selfish I have been this week. You don't know the foul attitude in my heart some days...
Yeah, but I know my heart. And I know my Savior. I know He offers second chances and new beginnings. And I know, by His grace, each one of us can be a good mom. So, please receive His grace today - and go love those kids!!!

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KarenW said...

So true! Thanks again for your encouragement.

luvmy4sons said...

AMEN! That would simply be the enemy, the accuser of the brethren! No one has a perfect life. NO ONE! Lovin' this!

Coach J said...

I'm glad you had a good time, and got to minister to a mom who needed you.
Ok, so can I assume that the reunion with a college buddy didn't go so good?? Or is that good time for another post?

Rachel said...

So good. I needed to hear this today. I'm having a hard time jumping back into my role as a mother right now. I've been up at a Heart Hospital with my Dad for 10 days and I'm about to pull my hair out with my children. Thank you for your words!!

freetofly said...

Great, great post! You hit the nail on the head so to speak...it's that dreadful little voice!

LOVE this" "Yeah, but I know my heart. And I know my Savior. I know He offers second chances and new beginnings. And I know, by His grace, each one of us can be a good mom. So, please receive His grace today - and go love those kids!!!"

That goes ditto! For YOU, too!

Thanks, Karen!


3 boys club said...

Thank you.
It amazes me what a spirit lifter a few simple words can be. My family was in Arizona a few weeks ago for my grandmothers funeral. One morning I was sitting in the breakfast area at our hotel with all three kids still in their pjs and socks so that my husband could sleep a little longer (and let me have some "me" time later in the day) they were passing food, talking loud, and making the usual morning mess, but I wasn't letting them get away without using their manners and being polite, especially out in public. There was an older woman at a table near by who didn't look over or interact with us at all until she got up to leave. She came over to me and said, "As a mom, you are doing a GREAT job, you should be proud." I wasn't until that moment. But the fact that someone else noticed and took the time to voice it out loud lifted my spirits for the whole day.

Karen, you are a great mom, though I don't know you personally, I can tell by all of your actions and reactions that you post that "as a mom, you are doing a great job!"

Dakota's Mom said...

I'm copying the last two paragraphs and pasting them all over my house! You always know how to make me cry.....and yes, that's a good thing! :) God knows just the words to put in your little fingers when you type.

realworldmartha said...

TERRIFIC! I can remember a lot of times when I have felt this way I have noticed it is a time where I have not been seeking or treasuring close relationships. When we have surface relationships we are more often sucked into the notion that people have it all together. When we are very close to others we see them and how we all have our shortcomings. In the begining of motherhood when we have babies and tend to maybe stay in a bit more the devil sure loves to seperate us from relationships to do this.
Thanks for your wonderful words!

kreed said...

I am a good mom...I am a good mom...If I say it enough I'll start to believe it, right?!?! Seriously, thanks for the reminder that none of us do it perfectly. And how fun to run into an old college friend - that is always a cool blast from the past!

Anonymous said...

So encouraging!