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Posted by on Mar 23, 2012 in Daily Encouragement, Diary of a Supermom, Family Life, Featured, Parenthood, Uncategorized | 4 comments

Making Ourselves CRAZY : Fondant Deficiency and Sweatpants

Making Ourselves CRAZY : Fondant Deficiency and Sweatpants

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It was the day before my son and daughter’s joint birthday party. About 35 people would be celebrating at our home the next day. It was the weekend, which at our house means my husband would be at work (he’s a pastor), so I wouldn’t have any help with the kids, or getting the house cleaned up and ready for company. I still had to clean up the house, get the yard ready, and clear off the back deck all while taking care of  three kids. To top it all off, we had out of town family staying with us that week as well. I was tired, stressed, and had a lot on my plate. And yet…I was busily rolling out marshmallow fondant so my kids could have a home-made superhero cake. Did I want to just buy a store-bought cake? YES. But, I couldn’t bring myself to order a cake from the store. Why you may ask? Was it because I don’t like store-bought cake? Quite the contrary. (Shout-out to Costco’s bakery….you are officially awesome!) No…I was CERTAIN that if people showed up to the party (no matter the dozens of other things going on in my life at the moment), that they would INSTANTLY think, “Hmmm..Bekki got a store-bought cake..What a crummy mom.” While there may be one or two matriarchal figures in a group that would actually think such things or make a snarky comment, like “Oh, so you decided just to go with a store-bought cake? I guess that’s fine.” MOST people will NEVER jump to “You are a bad mom,” because of a fondant deficiency.

Why do we hold ourselves to such ridiculous standards? Where do we come up with the gigantic list of things we HAVE to do to be a “good mom.” (or a “good wife!”)

Here is another example of my self-imposed lunacy. When I was in highschool, a couple spoke at our church about marriage. The woman said to never let your husband see you in sweatpants or a ponytail. For whatever reason, that stuck with me (out-dated and wildly ludicrous as it was). I remember being about 9 months into our marriage when my husband came home from work early, and alas, found me in sweatpants and a ponytail. I started crying. CRYING! He of course started asking me which relative had died or if I had been watching “My Girl” again. When I told him that I was crying because I was so sorry to let him down, his eyes widened, thinking I must have done something pretty awful. When I “confessed” to allowing him to see me with a ponytail, he was about ready to look up the phone number for the loony bin. He wanted to know where on earth I had gotten such a ridiculous idea, and made certain I knew that it WAS NOT from him. That was not his expectation (and good thing, as the ponytail is a mother of four’s ally) – it was mine. I was holding myself to some crazy lofty standard that NO ONE expected me to meet (well, other than the nut-ball lady that spoke at my church.)

Crazy self-imposed expectations brought about this blog. I had just started my journey as a stay-at-home mom (one of the toughest jobs imaginable btw), and was feeling like a complete failure because I wasn’t happily skipping through the house with my bottle of disinfectant. There wasn’t a gorgeous pot roast waiting on the dinner table when my husband got home. I wasn’t ready to cross-stitch “I Heart Being a Mom” on a throw pillow. And darn it, I wasn’t vacuuming in heels and pearls (neither of which I own, so that would have been a real trick…) I wasn’t a “magazine” mom, or a scripted and fictitious movie mom, so I must be failing…I also saw things other moms were doing and the feelings of failure and “I’m not good enough” continued to sink in. That mom was wearing a put-together outfit (and jewelry) to the park and I had on a hoodie and jeans…I must be a failure. She just posted on facebook that she made homemade ravioli and bruschetta for dinner, and I made tater-tot casserole…Wow I’m a bad mom. She took her child to the museum AND out to ice cream AND to the library today…That’s more outings than we take in a month…I really must not be doing this right….Any of this lunacy ring a bell with you?

We MUST stop doing this to ourselves. Holding ourselves to crazy standards and unrealistic expectations is dangerous….We will never be able to thrive as mothers when we put ourselves in a position to fail. We have to stop worrying about what people might think and what “that mom” is doing, and just focus on what matters….our kids…our family….our well-being. (Yep, we’re important too!) We’re not perfect, but we wake up each day wanting what is best for our families and our children. We try. We fail. We’re chasing the dream…chasing “Supermom.” Supermom isn’t real. Stop trying to be her and love being you….sweatpants, store-bought cake, and all. =)

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4 Comments

  1. Bekki, I LOVE this!!! So often I have felt this way. I also remember that lady that spoke at church that day but what I took away from it was make sure your house is clean before your husband gets home and that you have freshened your make up and have lip gloss on. WHAT????? I tried to keep up those standards for awhile and began to feel like a failure also. I now feel sorry for that lady! She must feel like crap all the ti
    E holding herself to those standards and trying ti be perfect. I am so grateful for the Husband God has blessed me with (and you). My husband loves me for me, in the good (lip gloss wearing, clean house, fancy pants) and the bad ( haven’t showered in a few days, house looks like a hurricane hit it, kids are cranky and snotty noses).
    As a mother I have also held myself and my children to a standard of perfection. When my child would act out or be disobedient I felt shamed like I was doing something wrong or I didn’t have “control”. Sometimes people would make a comment that my child was strong willed. I was so ashamed and beat myself up over it. What I realize now as a mother of four is that my children are HUMAN and therefore born into this world with a sin nature and an individual personality. It is my responsibility as their mother to ultamitily love them in the good and bad, to correct them when necessary, to discipline them if needed and to show them by example the correct way to behave. My kids WILL make mistakes and so WILL I. As long as my child is learning from his/her mistakes and makes them right. I’m doing my job. It’s not easy, it’s not perfect, I’m in no way supermom, but my children are loved and feel secure.
    Sorry for rambling. I just think that the world puts way to Manu pressures on us to look a certain way and portray ourselves in a certain light. All of which are false. There is so much freedom in just being who God created us to be and knowing that He loves just the way we are. It also reminds me not to judge the mom sitting next to me when her kid sasses her or acts out, or when she doesn’t look up to par. Instead love her and buy her a coffee that day or simply tell her, I’ve been there and smile at her. A smile goes a long way and so does a glare or an eye roll!

  2. I really needed to read this today. I usually feel so terrible that the house isn’t as clean as I’d like it to be when Rick gets home, or that dinner isn’t some glorious meal (that is my expectation), or that I’m in clothes that I would never wear out in public. I keep thinking “one day”, unrealistically.

  3. Bekki, thanks for the reminder! I have had a crummy week (being sick) and had to say No way more than I ever do to my girls bc I just physically culdn’t. I felt like the world’s worst mom. Why do we think we always have to be perfect when no one ever is? Thanks friend for this – needed it.

  4. Loved this and could totally relate! I too, have battled fondant and now pay a little more and buy Charm City Cakes fondant from Michael’s. No problems since I began buying this! Thanks for linking up today at Saturday Show & Tell at Cheerios and Lattes! Hope to see you again next week! :)

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