It had been a long day already and it was only 11:00. I had already cried twice and wanted to run away. Honestly, those feelings are pretty normal here. Garner had asked to paint my toenails at least 10 times. I had deflected that question each time. Reality- I do not like messes. I do not like chaos. I do not like crazy. (said the lady with 5 kids) A 5 year old painting my nails just feels like, messy crazy chaos. But finally I was tired of deflecting so I said ok. I lined the floor with paper towels, and braced myself.
She painted and painted. When she was finished she proudly said “ok I am done! Well, it looks a little messy, but don’t worry, it will dry pretty” I looked down at my feet and suddenly remembered the times I had seen friends walking around with messy nails and proudly said “my daughter painted them”. I kept trying to figure out how I could do it…. I just can’t! Tomorrow its going to be 75 degrees and I want to wear sandals I thought to myself.
Guilt washed over me. I knew I wanted to take off the nail polish. But I knew how proud my sweet girl was. But other moms just wear it. UGH! After a little while I realized that I could secretly repaint them, and let her think they dried pretty. After all, that is what she thought any way. This way I could have neat nails and skip the anxiety that messy nails would give me AND she would still be proud I let her paint my nails.
I am not a good mom like you, I am a good mom like me. I have been a mom for almost 14 years (one week away!) and I am slowly but surely realizing this. I may parent different. I may do things you don’t do. I may not be able to bring myself to wear the messy polish, but I am a good mom! You may embrace the messy polish- you are a good mom too! In a world where everyone is comparing and competing, we need to be offering ourselves more grace! Guess what? You are not a good mom like me, YOU are a good mom like YOU!
Can we embrace our differences and celebrate being good moms, period!? I mean seriously, mom, I love that you do it different and that it works! I am so tired of feeling pressure and guilt to be a certain type of mom. Life is way too short, raising kids passes too fast- to sit and waste time feeling guilty about how we are doing it!
Momma, you are doing a good job! You are enough! You are just what your babies need! (this reminder is really for me!)