Until I was 14 years old, we had one bathroom. For seven people. And you would think my biggest memory of that bathroom would be waiting to pee or fighting for a shower. However, it isn’t. My biggest memory is the stash of Parents Magazines that my mom kept under the bathroom sink. I would go in there and sit on the floor and flip through article after article. It was heaven.
A few years back, before I had kids of my own, my mom said how Parents magazine was made to make moms feel bad about themselves. I didn’t understand at the time because all I remember were all the pictures of holiday crafts and cool baby gear. However, I now know what she meant. Except it isn’t a magazine for moms making mothers feel inadequate, it is Pinterest, Instagram and the ever wonderful mom blogs. It is the picture of people’s beautiful children decked out in Etsy gear in their home their amazing husband built them in a gorgeous town after finishing some mission trip. (And don’t get me wrong I love my Etsy leggings, my amazing husband (who was just chewed out for being sick) and my kids are pretty cute, even with food in their hair and marker on their face).
However, today (the past two days) were the dark side of mother. The ones where you don’t capture the amazing photograph in the perfect lighting with your kid acting super cute at some educational, cultural, and oh so fun venue. Today was the day you gave your kid ice cream before dinner just so you could boil water for dinner. Oh and that dinner was some Annie’s boxed mac and cheese. It was the day you turned on Netflix and prayed there was some movie your kid will watch for 30 minutes while you feed the baby. Today was the day where the cloth diapers piled up and disposables were pulled out. It was the day your kids’ activities were less Maria Montessori, more Ipad friendly. It was the day where your house looked like an episode of Hoarders and your outfit a piece from What Not to Wear. Today, you decided against baths and gave in to the night time bottle even though you’ve been trying to wean. Pacifiers were shared, food was eaten off the floor and you may or may not have taught your kid a four letter word rhyming with it.
Today was the day we survived. The day we forgive ourselves for not being the perfect mother. or wife for that matter. The day we allow ourselves to not feel bad about the fact that we put the TV on a tad too long, changed out quinoa based lunches for a classic PB&J and allowed one too many snacks from the diaper bag. We forgive ourselves for not leaving the house, for boring our children (and ourselves), for not having Pinterest/Instagram/Blogworthy moments. We allow ourselves a moment to throw a pity party, to despise the “perfect moms” and to accept that today you did all the things you swore you never were going to do when you first found you were pregnant. Like give your kids ice cream.
But tonight you grab a glass of wine (or favorite beer) and you get back on that Pinterest, and on the Instagram of your favorite moms and you plan for an awesome tomorrow. One filled with homemade kale waffles that you kids with gobble down with vest. And activities that make every home-schooling momma across America come reading your blog. And pinning your pins. Where lunch is organic and dinner is perfectly balanced. One where you capture your child in the etsyest outfit in the perfect light doing the most adventurous, hippest thing.
Here’s to tomorrow…the day of the shower, makeup, and jeans.
(Nan…I apologize in advance for all grammatical errors. Feel free to get the red pen to screen while you sit back and wonder why you spent all that money on private education just for me to ignore plurals vs possessives…regularly)