Don’t Be a Perfect Mom. A Perfect Mom Is the WORST.

So he may not be that intuitive, but at least he saw his mom do this every month for 18 years a few times and knows to tread lightly.

Perhaps it’s time to treat yourself with the same kindness and respect you would give your grown-up children.

I usually try to be nice, but for a moment, let me be blunt:
(Outside of the obvious of abuse and neglect)
Striving for perfection is probably the worst thing you can do for your children. 

People are human. They will always act accordingly. They will be beautifully imperfect. They will succeed. They will fail. They will laugh. They will cry. There will be great joys and horrible losses. Some days are extraordinary. Some days never end.

Letting yourself be human and normal and every thing that comes along with that gives your children the freedom to do the same.

Striving for perfection will leave them anxious, incapable, and distant. While leaving you burned out, bitter, and frustrated.

The great paradox of it all is that relationships are best built in the messiest parts of life.

Every time my son talks about the fish I killed, our whole family laughs at my expense. Not that I recommend killing your children’s animals, but this mistake of mine has made for a very funny memory.

My daughter forgave me quickly after I sincerely apologized. And now she has the tools to handle herself when she loses her mind someday.

You know by now that I barely feed my kids lunch as it is; I am certainly not making food into anything special.

There are times to make childhood magical, of course.
And there are a handful of moms that enjoy making animal-shaped food. For which I say, “Get it, girl. You do you.” I hope you know it’s not about the food.

Our culture is taking the fun out of parenting by putting so much pressure on parents. I would venture to say that if parenting is overwhelming (newborns, notwithstanding) and it all feels like too much…there is a good chance you are putting unnecessary expectations on yourself.

We all do it. 

And yet kids require so much less amazingness than we think.
Quality parenting was never meant to be an unachievable high standard.
Your child would rather you sit and talk with them than make every meal from scratch.
A family game of bowling is as fun as an elaborate birthday party. And way less stressful.

Do awesome, memorable things. Of course. Your kids will love it. And so will you. But if every moment is epic, then no moment is epic.

Take away the “should’s” of your life…what you should do, who you should be, how you should act…and instead enjoy who you actually are and what you truly enjoy doing…THAT is the key to being an awesome mom.

The best possible mom for your children is the one you already are.

If my children can love a fish-murdering mom, your children will surely survive eating carrots in their native form.

“The most important thing she’d learned over the years was that there was no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” – Jill Churchill

This post originally appeared at Six Williams.

Sarah Williams
Sarah Williams
Sarah Williams spends her days managing her four wildly fun children and desperately hoping their house is still standing when her husband, Brett, gets home from work each day. Learning the hard way that motherhood is way more fun when you let go of unnecessary expectations and embrace imperfection, Sarah shares her journey in a compassionate, light-hearted way at Sarah lives with her family in sunny Florida, where she must sacrifice good hair for beautiful, albeit humid, weather. Sarah is the author of Cupcakes on a Tuesday: Sweet Relief for the Early Years of Motherhood, available on Amazon.

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