I hear the doorknob click and instantly I wake from my sleep. My oldest just opened his bedroom door and there’s a part of me—a part deep inside me that belonged to my 21-year-old-childless-self—that cringes.
I turn to look at the clock as he crawls into bed next to me…5:03 am…geezus! It keeps getting earlier, and this is what I get for being lax about my wake up time rules.
Yet, there’s a part of me that is kinda okay with this. I know this won’t last forever. Before long, he’ll be running off to college and saying crazy-weird things like ‘Peace out, Ma!’ and looking waayyy too hairy and grown up for 18.
I resign to allowing him into my bed on this too early Saturday morning.
Immediately, a thought pops into my head…
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom?
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who decides her kid needs to wait to come out of his room until 7:00 am but then flexes and decides the hell with it…5:03 am is totally fine?
A mom who works hard to create some sort of boundaries and routine around sleep, but sees the beauty in letting the kids watch a movie until 10 pm (whilst naked and eating popcorn) every now and again.
A mom who wants her kids to sleep alone in their own beds so she can be alone with her husband for a hot minute, but then welcomes them all in for a slumber party sometimes.
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who makes her kids eat healthy some of the time? I’ll put broccoli on their plates and say a silent prayer. I’ll do something crazy and sit under the dinner table with candles, hoping they’ll eat the spinach smoothie I made with strawberries to cover it up. Then tomorrow, I’ll make a box of mac and cheese, give them a fruit cup and call it good enough.
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who is all about positive parenting, but messes up and yells (or even bribes with dessert) sometimes? My very best may involve getting really frustrated and sharp and crabby with my kids.
Other days, my very best may involve infinite patience and turning every challenging situation around. My grandmother always advocated for balance. Let’s go with that.
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What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who on occasion visits Pinterest and picks a craft to do with the kids? Crafts are cool. Sometimes. The rest of the time, I offer them toilet paper roll and tell them to pretend it’s a megaphone or telescope.
What if—for the most part—I simply embrace letting the kids play in the dirt or at the park and call it good enough?
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who plays with her kids on the floor, but doesn’t stress over doing every possible activity and play date? Today we’ll skip the organized trip to the museum and forego signing up for club soccer in exchange for being present, enjoying the moment and calling it good enough.
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who reads all the bedtime stories and then other nights is a mom who practically slingshots the kids into bed and tosses their blankets to them from the doorway?
Tomorrow I’ll struggle to get through If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, while I secretly dream about spending hours and hours alone in a room with books and coffee (or wine).
What if all I want to be is a good enough mom who does her very best, but messes up again and again and again and knows that it’s okay to fail because you can always do better and try again?
What if I just want to be a mom who promises to show up?
What if I just want to be a mom who learns and grows right alongside her kids?
What if I just want to be a perfectly imperfect mom?
What if I just want to be a good enough mom?
I feel my son’s hand trace across my forehead, and I instantly shift out of my daydream and back to reality. My head lifts off the pillow slightly and I check the clock again. 5:09 am. This time, I give myself a pep talk. Alright. Alright! I’m awake! You. can. do. this.
For a moment, our eyes lock. He half smiles, hugs my face with his hands, and says, “I wuv you, mommy.”
My heart oozes.
There’s innocent joy in the air signaling to me that maybe…just maybe…good enough really is good enough.
Today, I promise to be a mom who loves her kids with two eyes wide-open and one enormously full heart. I hope it’s good enough.
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