The Pursuit of Mommy Perfection, and Why It Doesn’t Exist

I love my kids.  A lot.  And I try my hardest to be a great mom.  I started off trying to be perfect, but I learned early on that it’s impossible to be perfect.  So… these days I strive to be a really good mom.  “Really Good”.  That’s my goal.  Not perfection.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I tried hard at first.  Being a perfect mom, was very important to me when my kids were babies.  I had such a strong need to make their lives perfect.  SIGNThey were so completely dependent on me… as all new moms know, that’s scary.  You love this baby in a primal, mama bear way.  And it’s just as scary to realize that not only do they need you, but YOU need them.  I think that’s where the desire to be perfect for them, takes over.

But it’s impossible to be perfect.  Truly impossible.  Most moms realize this.  But some refuse to acknowledge it and never “give in” to just being the best they can be.  I still encounter other moms who have kept up that pretense of mommy perfect2perfection.  And honestly, those are the moms I steer clear of.  They are simply pretending.  And making the rest of us feel bad.  Between being exhausted, under-appreciated, overworked, tired (did I say that one already?), and even more tired!…  there is simply not enough time in a day to be a perfect mom.  I love honest moms, who admit they are just doing the best they can.

Like a lot of other moms, in my early pursuit of the unattainable mommy perfection, I ended up with some pretty funny “perfection failures”.  I could probably write a list of my Top 100 actually.  Because as we all know, life has a funny way of laughing at us when we least expect it. But what I’ve realized from each of my failures, is that it’s important to look back and laugh at them.  For now, I’ll share 2 of my MOMMY PERFECTION FAILURES with you… (maybe the other 98 another time)…

 

MY PERFECTION FAILURE #1:  The Smelly Pumpkin 

One fall, we went pumpkin picking with our baby.  Which all moms know is just a photo op.  Who can resist a baby/toddler, sitting in a pumpkin patch?  So that year, I charged my camera, packed the car, dressed my daughter as cute as could be in a pumpkin outfit.  Complete with the hat that looked like a stem.  And we drove 1 & 1/2 hours to the “best” pumpkin patch.  Ooh, I just couldn’t wait for the “perfect” pumpkin pictures of my pumpkin.  But of course, that was the one day I forgot extra clothes.  And my little pumpkin threw up all over her cute pumpkin outfit (oh yes, before we even got there).  So we drove home with a very naked, smelly child, and no pictures.  If I had treated it as any other day, I would have had a million extra clothes in her bag.  But I was way too worried about getting that perfect pumpkin patch photo!  Mommy Fail!

Re-enactment after laundry day!

Re-enactment after laundry day!

MY PERFECTION FAILURE #2:  Pajama Day

A few years ago when my daughter was in kindergarten, her school had a “Pajama Day” to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday.  I marked it on my super-organized mom calendar, and hung the flyer on the fridge.  So the day came, and she dressed in a very cute snowman covered nightgown and slippers.  And off she went on the bus.  I thought about her a lot throughout the day, wishing I was a kid again and could wear my pjs to school.

But at the end of the day, she got off the bus (in that adorable nightgown), and yelled… “MOMMY!  No one else had on pajamas because TOMORROW IS PAJAMA DAY!  Yes, I sent my daughter to school in her pajamas – THE DAY BEFORE pajama day!  I had hung the flyer on the fridge, circled the date…  yet somehow, I had mixed up the date.

All I could picture was this adorable little girl at school all day in her nightgown, while everyone else had on regular clothes.  At lunch, recess, gym, ALL DAY!   Thankfully she was only 5 and not completely humiliated.  She was just slightly embarrassed.  I felt terrible I did that to her.  And I couldn’t imagine what the other moms & teachers thought.  But then my daughter and I started laughing so hard we were crying.  Mommy failed, but hey, it was pretty funny.  Now every year when pajama day comes around again, she reminds me that I better get the day right!   Ah, the guilt.

So just know that you are not alone when your desire for mommy perfection, gets the better of you, and then you fail.  At the  very least, try to always see the humor in it.

perfect-parent-except-for-kids

#pursuitofperfection  #parentingfails  #oops  #pajamaday  #mommyfail

 

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