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Candle in the Night

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Feeling Inferior?

It's not surprising!  There are so many demands put on us to be "good" moms.  We see them everywhere, but the place where we get hit the hardest is from ourselves.  Innately, every mother wants to be a good mother to her children.  (I suppose I shouldn't say every mother, but most, normal-functioning mothers anyway.)  We want to teach them things, do things with them, provide them with good, quality time, feed them good foods, and on top of all that, do all the good, "wifely" things like keep an organized home and be happy and clean for our husbands.  Being a mother is very demanding!  I made a post not all that long ago about how it is really, really hard!

But in today's culture, I believe it is even harder to rise above the feelings of inferiority.  We have a constant bombardment of all the very best things that other mother's are doing.

Good Mommy #1 went out and built a snow fort with her kids this week.  I don't like getting cold.  My kids don't like getting cold.  My snow boot is broken.  But boy, that mom sure is a good mom!  
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Good Mommy #2 makes healthy meals for her children and lets them cook with her.  I tried that yesterday.  M. made a HUGE mess and got egg everywhere.  Not gonna be doing that for a while!  I let H. help, that's good, right?  
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Good Mommy #3 makes her own granola bars.  I bought three boxes from the store yesterday because the girls were driving me nuts and I HAD to give them something to snack on.  Granola bars are WAY expensive!  
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Good Mommy #4 does a good job of cramming her family of 7 into a tiny house and PRAISES the Lord that they are closer for it!  I do an okay job of cramming my family of 5 into a small house, but it's not very often I am found praising God for it.  
Red Roof
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Good Mommy #5 makes and does all kinds of great activities with her toddler.  I went to a busy bag swap the other day and we've played with our busy bags...oh...three times?  It's so easy, why don't I do it more often?
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You get the idea.  The internet and TV are loaded with "good mommies".  They're everywhere!  It is so easy to look at all these "good mommies" and feel inferior.  I've done it and I know many friends who have done it.  But we need to remind ourselves of two very important details.  

#1. We only post the best.  On our blogs and our facebook accounts, we're not likely to post our failures. I'm not going to post a picture of me laying on the couch while the kids watch a video.  I'm not going to post a status update about how I just wasted an hour playing facebook games instead of cleaning the kitchen while the girls were napping, so now we're having McDonald's tonight.  Occasionally, internet mommies may post these things to encourage themselves or others out of a rut, but normally, we post the positive.  The good things.  The neat things we do with our kids.  Imagine if everyone spent a week or a month posting only the "bad mommy" things they did.  Can you picture your facebook newsfeed?  "I just spent two hours doing nothing."  "I just told my kids I couldn't read them a book because I was tired."  "I just answered 'BECAUSE I SAID SO' for the 37th time today!"  Wow, we'd all feel like good mommies then, wouldn't we??  

The easy answer?  Think about what those other moms may not be doing.  While you may be really good at cooking, I'm really good at cleaning...  But that's not encouraging either.  Instead, think about you.  Stop thinking about other moms and think about what you've done well today with your children.  If there isn't anything, get up and do something instead of wallowing in feelings of inferiority.  If your facebook newsfeed isn't encouraging you, get off of it!  

#2. I am a redeemed mommy.  One of my favorite Michael Card songs has a line that says, "He hands us each new moment saying, 'My child, begin again.  You're free to start again!'"  How incredible!  Not a "good mommy"?  It is not too late!  If you had a rough day yesterday (perhaps my motivation to post??), you can start again! Children are so, so, so forgiving!  They won't care that yesterday was rough.  Today is what they care about and since God forgives too, you're all set!  

So don't sit in your chair feeling inferior.  None of us is the perfect, or the best mommy.  None of us is even good enough.  But we're can all be redeemed and start fresh!  And with that, I will close this post and go read to my little girls.  I hope you all have a great day!



At February 28, 2013 at 8:32 AM , Blogger Sarah Marie said...

Awww thanks for lumping me in with the good mommies! This makes me think... WOW we are all good mommies in different ways!
I haven't gotten out our busy bags once -- and MY swap was months ago!
The most I have Eric do in the kitchen is dump in an innocuous ingredient (read: not eggs, not powdered sugar...) and turn on the mixer.
I thought about GM #4's post while I was cleaning all 21 of my windows last week... and was still very grateful for my large house and the personal space it gives each of us... and I praised God for THAT!
And I was in no mood to play in the snow yesterday, so Good Daddy took Eric outside.

Thanks for the reminders. :) We don't all have to be ALL of those mommies!!!

At March 2, 2013 at 5:04 PM , Blogger Simcha said...

Thanks for this post! I struggle with feeling inferior as a mom daily. I appreciate the encouragement!


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