I just saw a mug emblazoned with “World’s Okayest Mom” and laughed out loud. That’s a title that says it all. I love that my kids think I’m the “Greatest Mom,” and my youngest still tells me, “You’re the BEST Mom in the whole wide world,” but I know the truth.
There are Moms that do it better than me, I’m certain, or Moms that do pieces of this Mommy gig better than me. But in the end, we’re all doing our best and sometimes, just being the World’s Okayest Mom is quite enough. I had a friend who used to tell me about her standards for babysitters, “If the kids are alive when I get home, I’m good” which made me realize I could lighten up my own expectations and the same goes for myself as a mother.
Sometimes good enough is just plain okay!
Did the kids get fed mostly nutritious meals? Did they finish their homework (even if I never sat with them to help or check it out)? Did I tell them I love them? Did they get to their activities mostly on time? Were they alive for bedtime? Then I did a pretty good job that day! So all the other stuff adds up to wonderful bonuses.
The moments of harmony around the dinner table or in the family car, the days I cook a gourmet dinner and set a pretty table for a special treat are bonuses. The sweet times of genuine connection with a child or the heart-smiling displays of pure kindness and love between the kids are our Mommyhood rewards!
Forgive yourself for the days that pass without a craft project, without baking homemade cupcakes, without practicing math facts even though she really needs it. Forgive yourself the days that you are impatient, frustrated and indulge in a little screaming. We all have our pull-your-hair-out days!
I’ve often said that some days I really feel like I AM the World’s Greatest Mom and if Oprah happened to stop by she’d profile me in a show called “This is how you mother.” You know the days, everything goes right, it feels easy. You say all the right self-esteem-boosting things, you bake and twist homemade pretzels with your kids and weave it into a math lesson and your Mommy-halo is shining brightly and fits just right. You feel like you’ve got it perfectly pulled together. And then, there are the “Other Days.” Yup, those days when Oprah would flee from the premises and possibly report me to Dr. Phil. Those why-did-I-say-that-I-could-have-handled-that-better-what-the-hell-is-happening days.
I know I’m a good Mom, and a normal Mom. Some moments I’m a terrific Mom and others I’m a crappy Mom. Splitting the difference, I fall into the category of World’s Okayest Mom. And I’m okay with that.