Dear New Mama,
I’m going to keep this short because I know you don’t have a ton of free time. Right now your little one is probably taking a nap and you’re debating whether to be productive or to relax. Put your to-do list aside for a few minutes because there are some things I want to tell you. There are some things you need to know.
You are a good mother. The very fact that you wonder whether you are a good mom or not shows that you are indeed a good mother. A good mother is one who loves her children and tries to give them her best.
And I think you need to hear that you are a good mother. Even if you’re not a new to this gig – you need to hear this as well.
We all need to hear that we are good from time to time because so often we hear that we are not. Not too many people will tell you that they think you are a bad mother to your face but I can think of one person who will tell you over and over – you.
Parenthood is full of on the spot decisions that are many times high stakes or at least they feel that way. And we turn those decisions over and over in our head long after they have been made wondering if we made the right choices. The outcomes are important and I don’t want to trivialize the decisions but even when we make the right choice in hindsight we will always think, “I should have done more”.
We as mothers are often our own worst critics. Those on the outside look at us and see love but when we look at ourselves we see where we could have loved more.
There will always be more that we could have done because we are imperfect, incomplete people trying to mirror the heavenly Father’s example of a loving parent. As wonderful as we may be, we will not be perfect parents.
I don’t say this to discourage you – I say this to free you. You don’t have to be a perfect mother to be a good one. Keep striving to grow and be as loving as you can but do not let your imperfections fill your head with negative self-talk that only drags you down.
Let your imperfections point you upward to God; the one with mercies new every morning. The One who grants you grace and gives you strength to face each new day. Negative self-talk is draining but conversations with the Lord are refreshing.
Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
Now go try to squeeze in a little nap before your babe wakes up. There will always be more that you could be doing, but for right now what you need is rest. Extending yourself grace and love will help you to be a better mother and a little more sleep won’t hurt either.
A slightly less new but equally imperfect mama, Cat
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