A week after James was born, I sent my mom, who was staying with me, away for the afternoon because I was positive I had everything under control. Soon after she left, I decided that James needed his first bath, and the first thought that came to my mind was: “Wait, how do I bathe a newborn? I need my mom to come back!”
Ha! This was a little surprising because James is my third baby, and oh, don’t forget...I OWN a bath company. But still, I somehow felt intimidated and overwhelmed at the challenge of bathing this new, precious package all by myself.
It was a humbling moment and I realized that in every step as a mom, no matter how many kids you have, and no matter what stage of life you’re in, most things will feel new and even a little bit scary. You love these little ones so much and sometimes that love pushes you to a fear that you might be doing something wrong.
So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or uncertain about your role as a mother, I hope you remember that you were meant for this. Whenever I’m feeling inadequate as a mom, it is helpful for me to stop and focus on what I am actually working toward. Feelings of inadequacy have little to do with our capabilities and are usually directly correlated to an expectation we have imposed on ourselves. Let’s ask, “Have I set an unobtainable standard for myself and my little ones? If so, then let’s replace that standard with a realistic goal of day-to-day work and progress that will lead to success for everyone. You already have everything your children need within you: I hope the thoughts and exercises found in this chapter will rekindle your belief that you already have everything your children need within you. Replace any unrealistic expectations with kind insights about your talents and what makes you, you. Refer back to them on tough mom days.
Here’s to more focused time spent with our kids and fewer regrets thinking about the type of mom we should be or wish we were. Here’s to accepting our situation—whatever stage of life we’re in—and working to make it the very best for ourselves and for our families. Here’s to realizing that at the end of the day all that matters is that our kids know how much we truly love them. You, Mama, are an incredible mom. You were meant for this, and your little ones are lucky to call you theirs.