Soul Sunday: Ode to the perfect mother
Dear Perfect Mother -
I see you.
Strolling into church with your perfect hair and polished nails. Drinking your caramel machiatto and smiling so sweetly. Your Michael Kors handbag and red bottom shoes sit pristine next to me. Your well behaved children, sitting next to you, all with IPads - taking notes. I glance at your ripped arms, because you've been waking up at 4 am every morning for 'family work-outs'. I make small talk with you - as you inform me of the wonderful progression of your twenty three full time businesses, that you run in your sleep (which you clearly get 10+ hours - as you look so rested).Your children's strong desire to be enterprenuars and own their own company (at age six) are just a few things your 'instilling' in them before 7 am praying meeting with the church every morning. Your husband comes in to sit next to you, and remind you that you look astonishing and he's got a shopping spree with your name on it. I see you.
I see you because I am sitting next to you. Staring at you. "How does she do it?". I see you, because I'm jealous. I got into church 30-minutes late, stumbling with two children in tow, one of which has his shirt on backwards with an unknown yellow stain on the collar. He's extremely tired because he spent 3-hours straight playing angry birds so I can crash on the couch watching old "The orange is the new black" reruns on netflix. My hands are dry and my feet are unmistakably ashy, because I didn't think about those extremities, but at least I'm dressed -- in a wrinkled forever 21 top. I glance at my shoes, which are mix-matched today. I realize my own business is taking off slower than normal because I out pour all my days into my children and maintaining my home, which of much is non-impressive to everyone else. My husband is at home - walking his own walk - so I try to gather as much information on my tablet to get home and share with him what I've learned in order to work towards having a christ-centered-family....I see you.
But as I look at you with almost envy...I stop. And I realize I AM you. And you ARE me. I realize that we go through the same things, but handle them differently. I realize I am jealous of you because you have some of the same characteristics that I'd like to have. What I don't know is that you, like me, looked at another mom/woman and said "How does she do it?"
I decide that instead of 'hating' on you. I'm going to get to know you. I'm gonna learn how you managed to overcome some of the same issues, and use your knowledge as a mentor. Your not the perfect mom - you are a mom who's been where I've been and is still a work in progress. And that's so refreshing to know that God is working in your life the same way he's working in mines. I'm glad your in my life now, I'm not envious or jealous. I'm blessed!
If your mom who's constantly comparing herself to another, or feeling inadequate in your own skin, you certainly can do without it. It's a unending race, self comparison. We are all mothers, working the best way we know how. And it's up to each of us to help another mom struggling along when we THINK we've got some of this mothering & life stuff down.
Today, tell a mother that you see her...and she's a perfect mother just the way she is.