I saw some mommy friends this week and as we were visiting we talked about some of our experiences of being first time moms. I realized that we had a lot of the same issues and fears in regards to our babies. I didn’t know this until I actually sat down to talk to them. I didn’t think they had any of the worries I had. We follow each other on social media and it looked like they had it all together. I would have never guessed that my experiences were also their experiences.
You see it everywhere and all the time. That mom who has her kids perfectly groomed and dressed in the cutest most fashionable clothes all the time. She makes great dinners every night with the correct servings of all of the recommended food groups. She bakes cookies from scratch for the new neighbors. She is so crafty, making the most amazing Christmas decorations out of mason jars and burlap. Her house always look pristine. Her hair is perfectly done and she wears a full face of gorgeous makeup even when at home. We all know that mom that seems to have it all together. The mom that has set the bar for the rest of us. And we sit there envying her and wanting to be her all at the same time. The Pinterest Perfect mom.
“IN OUR MINDS, WE HAVE CREATED A MODEL OF A STRONG MOTHER AND SOMEWHERE ALONG THE LINE WE DECIDED THAT STRENGTH TRANSLATES INTO PERFECTION.”
Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we categorize ourselves into the “good moms” and “hot mess moms”? Aren’t we all on the same team, trying to do what is best for our families? We want and teach our kids to be true to themselves and that nobody is perfect. So why do we try so hard as mamas to hide what we perceive as flaws? As weakness. In our minds, we have created a model of a strong mother and somewhere along the line we decided that strength translates into perfection. And we beat ourselves up when we don’t meet that model of strength.
I tell myself that I want to lead my children by example. So I have to let go of all the labels and perceptions of what a good mom is supposed to be like and let them see me be me. A mama that has anxiety but doesn’t let that get in the way of being a hard worker. A mama that can be there for the ones she loves and also allows herself to lean on loved ones for support. An individual navigating through life knowing that it won’t always be picture perfect. My kid doesn’t need a “good mom”. They need me to be my best regardless of what the other moms seem to be doing.
What can we do to keep it real? Social media plays a part in putting forward only our best selves. I don’t think this is done on purpose, we want to share the good of our lives with family and friends and I believe that we inadvertently create a facade that we share with others of what life is like on a daily basis.
A picture tells a thousand words but those words don’t always hold the whole truth. We should talk out loud about our fears, insecurities, and imperfections to people we trust. Whether it be husbands, girlfriends, mommy forums, or anyone else that we consider to be part of our village. No one wants to share the rough parts of motherhood. We want to show that we’ve got it all together. We want to be seen as super moms. But we ARE super moms, with our 4 day old messy bun and our naked kids and our takeout and our piles of dirty laundry. We are imperfect. We are flawed. We are super. We are good.
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