Now that all the children have headed back to school, I thought it was a perfect time for a Commencement Speech for Mommy's. A rally cry as we all go forth through the tears, the joys, the heartaches that come with a new school year. Whether it's sending our little ones off for the very first time or watching our almost adults begin the first year of college, there's something about this time of year that calls for Mommy Camaraderie.
We tell ourselves this year is going to be different. I'm going to pack lunches the night before, I'm going to have home cooked meals every night, I'm going to volunteer more at the school, I'm going to have at least one date night a month, and I'm ABSOLUTELY going to start that Zumba class!! We make promises to ourselves and find ourselves remaking them by New Years and letting them fall to the waste side by spring break.
It is very easy to tell you to relax. It's easy to give you the long list of Mommy-Feel-Good lines that are printed over and over. It is harder to make those words resound, make you take them to heart. It is nearly impossible to make you look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself you're doing fine, especially when you feel like everything around you is in chaos. That feeling is normal. Every mom has it whether they admit it or not. So many of us try to portray perfection. even though TV & movies have been open to showing the "ugly-side' of motherhood- the no-make up, dinner from a can, messy living room, chasing after a 3 year old, miss-matched sock reality of it all. But even this does not ease the burden of actually raising children.
So I say this to you: Be kind to yourself. Please. There is only one you, no good substitute or replacement is available. You are your child parent- for better or worse. So do the things that make you happy. Be an example to them that life is about smiles and laughter, love and joy. Enstil in them a strong work ethic and an equally sense of self-worth by living it. The dishes won't complain about sitting in the sink for an our while you read bedtime stories and if you can learn to ignore your nagging inner voice the laundry will wait diligently until after your yoga class.
It is still your life even though it sometimes may feel that you've given over control to Eris, the goddess of chaos. You deserve happiness, just as your children do. So give yourself a break (literally and figuratively) take a long walk and forgive yourself for ordering take out 3 nights in a row. Make a promise to relinquish some of that control, slack the reigns and enjoy the ride.