Since I became a mother, I’ve had constant peaks and valleys in my mum confidence – my momfidence? – and I suspect that most mothers (and parents, but particularly mothers) feel the same way.
While I know being a mum is truly the most awesome thing I’ve ever done, there are plenty of times when I feel that my way of going about it is less than awesome. As my wise friend M says: “being a mum means feeling guilty about everything you do for the rest of your life.” So for every time I take my kids on a vitamin-D filled, worm poking and foliage exploring hike – and feel like an A-1 Natural Mama – there is the time when I shut myself in the den and watch Jersey Shore, telling the kids I’m folding laundry and am not to be disturbed unless someone is bleeding. And for every chapter of Harry Potter I read out loud to them while snuggling blissfully on the sofa, they watch at least an episode of SpongeBob and probably have something sugary with extra sugar on top to go along with it. My pleasure in my mom-ly achievements each morning is usually canceled out by a parenting no-no each afternoon.
And yet, sometimes I remember to view it the other way around. Because for each time I leave Target with an armful of Bionicles after swearing there will be ABSOLUTELY NO NEW TOYS – there is the dinner where I experiment with a new food (this week it was quinoa), convince both kids to try it, and have one of them deem it “okay.” And for each moment where I am snappy and impatient with them, there are at least a dozen where I am loving, patient and kind.
And that’s a stat that really gives me momfidence.