As a first time mom, I’ve had more than my share of “mistakes”. I’ve forgotten the diaper bag and had to improv a poo explosion while out and about. I forgot #3 bottle nipples altogether; we just went straight from #2 to #4. I’ve had her dressed inappropriately for the weather, and one time I clipped a tiny piece of finger while clipping her nails. As I carried her into her bedroom one night I accidentally cut a corner too sharply and smacked her head right on the door frame. As a stay at home mom I feel like there are days when she’s bored with me and I let her down. And my all time favorite – the time I was working on getting her to nap in her crib. One afternoon after I laid her down she turned to look at me and started to cry. My first instinct was to drop down on the ground in front of the crib so she couldn’t see me which would’ve surely spurred her on more. Great plan. Until I felt her little body flop on top of me from above. I had forgotten to close the latch in my hurry to drop to the floor, and she had successfully catapulted herself on top of me. Thankfully she had good aim, and thankfully she was just fine. But my heart hasn’t beaten that fast in a long time, and I can assure you I have NEVER forgotten to close that latch again.
If you’re like me, these mistakes can really eat away at your heart. I so badly want to be perfect as a mom for my daughter. I want to make all the right decisions, do all the right things, and I want to have the answer for everything. And its easy to forget other moms have “oops” moments too as we usually only see the “award winning mom moments” on our social media. So when these mistakes happen, whether big or small, mom guilt always shows up with impeccable timing and usually lingers around for a bit.
Then one day I saw this little quote that struck a chord within me, and has helped me shake off those missteps (trust me – there are plenty more, but I couldn’t air all my dirty secrets!) so I could spend my energy being my best for my daughter, not beating myself up over mistakes that are inevitable as a mom.
This quote put my heart at ease. It was a much better mentality to take about motherhood than my previous one that sought perfection. Every day I do my best, as I’m sure you do too. And that’s enough. My best is always enough. When I trip up along the way now, I learn and move on. And the next time – I do better. I don’t even entertain the, “How did I not know that?!” or the “I can’t believe I didn’t think of that?!”. Everyday Tayler teaches me something new about our world together, and everyday I get better as a mom because of it.
If I could go back and talk to myself as a brand new mom, I’d let her know that no matter how many baby books you read, there is no foolproof guide to motherhood. I’d tell her that there is an enormous amount of information you’ll learn along the way, and that you’re not supposed to know it all right off the bat. I’d remind her that babies are made to bend, not break, and are created to survive first time parents. I’d tell her to follow her gut, give it her all everyday, absorb as much knowledge from other moms as you can, shake off your mistakes as quickly as you make them, and when you know better, do better. And that will always be enough.