As a mom of a raging toddler who tests every ounce of my patience, makes me question my every move, and keeps me chasing after her all day long I find that sometimes my stress impacts me more than I thought it ever would after becoming a stay at home mom....I truly feel like I am a "hot mess" sometimes! Luckily I have a husband who supports our family and is fully engaged with our daughter, but I sometimes feel like I do not know how to be the mom I want to be. I have so many behavior management tools in my back pocket from teaching special ed and sometimes I think (or even say), "What the hell do I do?!?" when McKinley talks back to me in her babble shaking her finger at me or tells me "no." Side note: I have learned it's not even worth it to get into a back and forth battle with your toddler....they will win! I unboxed M's little potty the other day and on the box it says 18 months-3 year. OH.MY.GOSH! I do not even know the first thing about potty training! How do you do it? She is only in size 3 diapers and I need to start thinking about this?!?
“You're just a mom, You feel useless and essential at the same time. You feel like everyone is doing a better job than you and that nobody understands what you're going through.” **
In any case, when I have a moment to reflect I think about how much growth as a mom I have done over the past year and a half. I learned from my own trial and error. Reading "how to.." books isn't the practical way to parenting. It's by following your gut and getting a feel for your own child. It is amazing what M picks up on simply by watching me or seeing things in her environment. She knows the movements to washing her hands because she sees me doing it throughout my day. She has learned to push buttons on her toys and pretend play with a mixing bowl and spoon by watching me during playtime or in the kitchen.
I read a fantastic book recently called Confessions of a Domestic Failure and think the author totally gets the reality of being a mom. The author tackles the struggles that every mom can relate to while keeping you laughing the entire way through from weight to household chores to feeding to being a "Pinterest Mom".
“Dear Pinterest, When we first started dating, you lured me in with Skittles-flavored vodka and Oreo-filled chocolate chip cookies. You wooed me with cheesy casseroles adjacent to motivational fitness sayings. I loved your inventiveness: Who knew cookies needed a sugary butter dip? You did. You knew, Pinterest. You inspired me, not to make stuff, but to think about one day possibly making stuff if I have time. You took the cake batter, rainbow and bacon trends to levels nobody thought were possible. You made me hungry. The nights I spent pinning and eating nachos were some of the best nights of my life. Pinterest, we can’t see each other anymore. You see, it’s recently come to my attention that some people aren’t just pinning, they are making. This makes me want to make, too. Unfortunately, I’m not good at making, and deep down I like buying way more. Do you see where I’m going with this? I’m starting to feel bad, Pinterest. I don’t enjoy you the way I once did. We need to take a break. I’m going to miss your crazy ideas (rolls made with 7Up? Shut your mouth). This isn’t going to be easy. You’ve been responsible for nearly every 2 a.m. grilled cheese binge I’ve had for the past couple of years, and for that I’ll be eternally grateful. Stay cool, Pinterest. PS. You hurt me. PPS. I’m also poor now. Xo Me 10” **
The book follows the main character, Ashley Keller, who is a career girl turned stay at home mom while she tries to navigate through being the perfect mom. I swear, every mom should pick up this book and commend themselves for just surviving another day of mommyhood. There are so many, "I know, right?" moments in this book you will feel so great about yourself and the job you have done with your kiddo(s).
So go grab a copy or download this book onto your Kindle, pour yourself glass of wine, fill your tub up with a bubble bath, and start reading this book pronto! It will be a great pick-me-up! Don't be too hard on yourself. Your child will not know the difference and at the end of the day, all they want from you is your attention and love. Hang in there, mamas. You are doing a fantastic job!
**Excerpts from Confessions of a Domestic Failure