I knew I would be opening up a can of worms when I complained.
I knew there would be some people who would think, “What’s she complaining about?  She’s got it all?”
I knew there would be some who would say, “But I…” or “At least you don’t have to…”
And I knew that there was a chance that I might hurt some feelings.

But here’s the truth:
This blog isn’t for you.
This blog is for me.
And for my kids.
Oh, sure, I love that you come here.
I love that I am able to share our days, my thoughts with you.
And I love the conversations that come from this space.
But ultimately it’s for me, for us.
And when I look back and read this someday-
Or even more so…when my kids come back and read this someday-
I want them to see what it was like from my perspective.
And I don’t want it to be all sunshine and roses.
(Because it’s certainly not always sunshine and roses.)

In the comments from yesterday’s post, my cousin said this:

“…I love honesty about motherhood. It’s the best and the worst.
I feel like the worst was hid from me, or maybe I ignored it.”

I think that is so, so true.
We are quick to share our delivery room horror stories,
But we, as mothers (and fathers), don’t want to share our parenting lows.
And I get it.  I really do.

In the delivery room, most problems are not caused by the mother.
If something went wrong, we delve into conversations by saying “You won’t believe what happened…”
And when they’re little bitty babies, we talk of feedings and poop and sleep.
And we complain about long nights and spit-up.
All of these are things that are beyond our control.

But when that little baby starts to get bigger, I feel like we get more and more hesitant to share about the hard stuff.
Because if you admit that sometimes it is ridiculously hard, it somehow seems as if you have failed.
And you (well, maybe I’m the only one?) feel like you can’t complain because it would make you seem ungrateful.
And you can’t say what’s really on your mind because people will talk about how you shouldn’t do this or shouldn’t do that.
But I think in doing this, we are doing a disservice to each other.

I may present a pretty picture online (and my life is actually pretty darn amazing).
BUT there are days that aren’t.  And I have struggles just like any other parent.
And I yell sometimes.  (Ok, I yell a lot.)  (And very loudly.)
And I say things to them that I shouldn’t.
And, on occasion, I’ve been known to pop them a little harder than I meant to.
And while it’s kind of embarrassing to admit, there is something freeing about saying those things aloud.

It is almost as if I was unknowingly tied down by my own reputation.
I frequently get comments about how I am a fun mom and a good mom.
(And I genuinely appreciate them!)
But sometimes it is impossible to live up to the expectations that are there.
(And it is most certainly impossible to live up to the expectations I set for myself!)

And so here I sit, thinking back on the day.
Analyzing where it all went wrong
And how I could have done things better.
And I hear my own words echoing in my head.
You aren’t perfect.
You won’t ever be perfect.
Perfection is impossible
(But finding happiness in the imperfection is not).

Now if I could just learn to practice what I preach.
The learning curve is steep on this learning to love imperfection stuff.


5 Responses to Freedom
  1. Toni Michelle
    July 28, 2011 | 10:14 am

    While I love to read about all of the fun things yall do and the great moments you share with your kiddos–it is refreshing to also read of the downer days. Because that lets me know that I am not alone. I have MOMMY GUILT so bad. Especially this summer. I have HATED working this summer and i LOVE LOVE My job. I see all of the fun things that mommies are able to do with the kids this time of year and i only have Saturday and SUnday to do them. So seeing that there are a few times when you perhaps ponder the thought of what the grass is like on the other side–lets me know that mothers on the other side of the fence have the same struggles as I!

  2. Angela IVey
    July 28, 2011 | 10:45 am

    You only expressed what most, if not all, parents feel. It is unrealistic to think that all days are sunshine and roses. And, just so you know, you are an awesome mom.

  3. Jil
    July 28, 2011 | 1:32 pm

    I loved this post as well as the last one. I think it is like you said, we have expectations and when we don’t meet them, it’s almost embarassing to admit. However, that is what makes you human! Every mom or woman I know has down days and that’s what the other women in your life are for. To help lift and let you know it’s okay, because we’ve all been there.
    When we all put our shoulders together we become strong for those that need a shoulder to lean on during those tough times and let me tell ya there will be alot. My children are all grown and gone except my daughter who is a senior in high school and there have been some really tough times. But it helped that I had friends to lean on, that didn’t judge me, but were there for me. So know that you aren’t being judged and that I’ve been where you are. It will get better and you will have wonderful days (more often than not), but there will also be those hard days when you need a little alone time and it’s okay! Take a deep breath and know you are being thought of. You’re a great mom! Take some time and re-fill your tank so that you’re ready to give again and then go forth!! You bless the lives of so many so it’s okay to need to re-fill once in awhile! We all need that! I’ve never personally met you, but I feel such a connection to you! Thanks for your honesty and for being the kind of woman I want as a friend!! Love you Bridget!!

  4. designhermomma
    July 28, 2011 | 9:03 pm

    blogging for me will never be ALL sunshine and roses, because, you know, I blog about my life.

  5. punkinmama
    July 31, 2011 | 10:07 am

    Oh thank you for posting this! It certainly makes me feel more normal. And I think that it’s so important for people to know the reality of motherhood — and that they’re not alone when it is tough. I know I was surprised just how hard having a newborn really is. No one talked about the difficulties, and it hit me harder than maybe it did others, but never hearing anyone say it was tough made it that much harder. Same for now that Punkin’s older. I hate that I yell, or yes, pop him sometimes. I feel like a monster sometimes and not worthy of being his mom. But I’m doing the best that I can. And he is turning out pretty good, if I do say so myself.