Some people have a picture in their minds of what a “great mom” looks and acts like. Perhaps you picture a Stepford Wife, one of the moms from Workin’ Moms, or somewhere in between. The truth is that being a great mom is not one-size-fits-all. You can be a great mom under any circumstance!
Have you ever felt inadequate as a mother? The answer is yes, always yes. Every mom has felt a sense of inadequacy somewhere along the line. Every mom has dealt with guilt. I am here to reassure you that despite those feelings and the things you sometimes have to do to get through your day, you are certainly a great mom.
You Can Be a Great Mom And . . .
Let your kids have screen time.
Sometimes, mama just needs a break. Letting your kiddo watch a movie or their favorite show is a great way to get some time to yourself. Besides, who doesn’t like vegging out in front of the TV?
Serve pb&j on repeat.
Every mom out there has had to have repeat meals like this just to get through the week. You know your child will eat it; it’s cheap, quick, and easy to serve. Feeding your little one (or little ones) is tiring when you have to do it three times a day, seven days a week. Sometimes, you just need something quick that you know they will eat.
Pick up fast food.
Fast food is a godsend when you are rushing around after work between activities and have no time to cook. Going through the McDonald’s or Chick-Fil-A drive-through is one of life’s greatest conveniences when you need to feed your family in a pinch.
Go on (kid-free) vacation.
Mom deserves some time away without her children. Resetting and refreshing are essential. Remember, if you’re not there for yourself, you can’t fully be there for anyone else, including your kiddos.
Have a messy house.
The best houses are the ones that are lived in. It is a false expectation that your home must be perfectly tidy while trying to raise and take care of your family. It’s great when the stars align and both the playroom and kitchen are clean, but it’s like a solar eclipse – take a picture. It probably won’t last long!
Let your child have sugar at times when you know they really shouldn’t.
Fruit snacks for breakfast, am I right? Sometimes, it’s just easier on the days when you don’t have any fight left to give. And sometimes, you just need ten more minutes of compliance as you navigate the grocery store (toddler moms especially, you know what I mean).
Wear the same outfit multiple times a week.
Is there time to do laundry when your children need so much of your attention?
Go to the office five days a week.
Don’t let the guilt creep in for this one. Working outside the home makes many moms an all-around better parent. Going to the office can give you a much-needed break from parenting, and when you return home, that time with your littles is even more valuable.
Stay home with your kid(s).
Whether you work from home or don’t currently have a career, being able to stay home is a gift that many women dream of. Kids do not have to go to school or daycare to socialize, which can bring relief to a mama if they’re too anxious to utilize childcare.
Have an incomplete baby book.
Life happens, and your little infant is a toddler before you know it. If you’re anything like me, their baby book is only partially completed. Thankfully, I have a lifetime of photo and video memories stored in iCloud!
Miss the life that you used to have before you had children.
A photo will come up on my Timehop or memories and take me back to a carefree time when all I had to worry about was myself (and my dog). It was a simpler and more joyful time! I always feel guilty for missing and reminiscing about that time, but I know deep down that it is perfectly fine to miss the life I used to lead while still loving my life today with my family.
Hide in the closet from your children when you just need a few minutes of silence.
Silence is one thing that is hard to find in a busy home full of children. There’s nothing wrong with grabbing a few minutes of silence as you hide in the comforting darkness of your closet.
Hide the good snacks and eat them alone in the pantry.
Am I the only one that has eaten cookies alone in my pantry? I cannot be alone in this!
Sleep train your baby.
You can still be a great mom and sleep train your baby after a certain age. Sleep is an incredibly valuable commodity. And some moms are just better moms when they are not waking up regularly in the middle of the night to feed or soothe their baby. This is a personal choice, and no one way to sleep train (or not sleep train) is better than the other!
Mute influencers that make you feel “less than” on social media.
Don’t feel like you have to follow them and aspire to live the same life! Your life is different than that of an influencer, and you will parent in different ways. On that note, you can mute or unfollow anyone on social media that does not make you feel like a great mom (because don’t forget — you absolutely are!).
There are so many different qualities that make you an amazing mom! Your babies are safe, loved, and cared for. While it may be challenging, it is important to try and filter out other people’s opinions on what makes a “great mom” and to let go of some of the guilt and enjoy your children as much as you can.