The prevalence of “Bad Moms” and “Mommy Wars” has exposed that as moms, we are far too hard on ourselves and to each other. Nonetheless, I still find myself apologizing for, rationalizing, and defending my parenting choices on an almost daily basis (albeit, often self-imposed). Here is my solemn vow to quit apologizing for things that I have chosen. My list includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Wearing a bikini when I take my kids to the pool. I am barely 30. I work out. I know I’m not entering a pageant anytime soon, but I’m also not to the momsuit stage yet, so let me enjoy it while I can.
- Letting my kids listen to rap music. They are also exposed to alternative, rock, Christian, country, and classical. I like many types of music and they do too.
- My kid crying in public because he’s not getting what he wants. I would rather experience a full-on meltdown in Braum’s than a 4 year old who thinks he can get away with anything in public.
- Not making bento box school lunches. This is one area where I have really waved the white flag. I’m mostly going for “completion” here, which means my kids actually EAT their lunch. I let my kids mostly pack their own lunches and they might have anything from whole-grain crackers and hummus to Uncrustables with white, over-processed bread. We will tackle the other food groups at dinner, mmmkay?
- Bringing store-bought baked goods for treats. Baking really isn’t my thing and ain’t nobody got time for extra things we don’t enjoy.
- Taking trips without my kids. I absolutely miss them, but little getaways are the perfect time for my husband and I time to focus on our relationship. KEY.
- Bringing Pinterest-worthy Valentines every time. Yes, I know they’re silly and the kids don’t get much out of it, but I really enjoy crafts and this gives me just the excuse I need to bust out the glue gun.
- Posting too many pictures of my kids. I get that not everyone cares, but we have family all over the country and I KNOW they want to see it all (I’m looking at you in particular, Nana Kaye!).
- Not being at school pick up every day. There are many days that I’m busy at work and can’t get away for school pick up, so my kids either walk home or go to latchkey (depending on their ages and the weather). I love being there when I can, but I also realize that my working is what’s best for our family and that walking home or going to latchkey gives them an opportunity to learn independence skills or play with their friends longer. Laura Ingalls Wilder walked home and turned out okay, my kids can too.
- Making time to work out or fix my hair and makeup, but not for some of the things already listed above. I am a firm believer that in order to take care of your kids, you must also take care of yourself. I have learned that I am the best version of “me” both at work and at home when I am in shape and feel put-together, and I want to set an example for my kids that staying healthy and putting some effort into your appearance is important.
I am far from a perfect mom, but I am working to only try to change the things that really matter…and I’ve decided that for my family, none of the above really do in the scheme of things. #SorryNotSorry.