Cereal dinners & pajamas

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I've been inspired today.... ...and it came from other mothers. A mother in the trenches, and others reaching out to lift her up.

One of the replies I loved most included the suggestion that serving cereal for dinner and having a happy, less-stressed mama would be more beneficial (to our kids) than having that "made-from-scratch-slaved-over-while-the-toddler-screamed-incessantly-ultra-healthy meal" and an unhappy, overwhelmed, coming- completely-undone mama.

This struck me. Pretty hard.

Because I am sometimes the world champion at this "motherhood perfection game in-spite of my happiness" kinda lifestyle.

Those days when you know as soon as your feet hit the floor, you might as well be on the show Survivor. You dread making breakfast, and the baby won't give you a break to even do so, but the other children are starving, so press on, you must. And you couldn't possibly give them the same pop tarts you gave them yesterday because a) pop tarts have become a sugary sin and b) what kind of "real mom" are you that doesn't have the homemade pancake batter ready and the organic turkey sausage simmering over the stove?!

So....you wrestle with giving them the kind of breakfast that Dr.Sears may shake his pointer finger at, or.... you frazzle yourself [and apply pressure where pressure isn't needed], and you opt for the organic, gluten free, scratch made breakfast that may end up with you in a meltdown along with your toddler.

There's so much pressure out there to be "this or that" kind of mom. You've got countless articles, books, email subscriptions, moms groups, coworkers, and even family members and strangers that all freely give suggestions and criticisms on how you should be mothering yourchildren.

It's enough to make a mama wanna throw in the towel. It enough to make us focus on digging our trenches deeper and deeper, and less on the little people we are called to serve.

Being a mom is hard enough. Don't feel badly if one day, you never get out of your pajamas, and your kids stay in theirs too. So what if you nix all of the chores to just build tents and read books all day. Homeschool moms, if you try for 15 minutes to simply get a single sentence in during lessons over the screams of your toddler, just put the books away.

Not every day has to follow a master plan. I realized over the past year or so that I'm still a good mom if my child wears a disposable diaper when I get annoyed or overwhelmed with the commitment to cloth (although I'm still tough on myself....it must be a chlorine free, chemical free disposable.lol). I realized that I'm still a good mom if I don't have the green thumb that some other mamas have that literally grow massive gardens of nutritious amazing-ness for their families. I'm still a good mom if my kids don't eat all organic, ultra nutritious, gluten-free, soy-free, humanely tested, non-GMO food products. I'm still a good mom if I declare more than two random consecutive days, school-less. I'm still a good mom even if my kids socks are mismatched. I'm still a good mom even if I forgot for the 100th consecutive day to brush my hair in the morning, and care two licks about accessorizing my outfit for a play date or field trip. I'm still a good mom even if I serve cereal for dinner and have piles of laundry on my bed.

You are still a good mom.

Because what really matters is that you are in the business of creating a happy home. A happy home includes, most of all, a happy mama. And mama can't be happy when she allows the pressures of motherhood {and even more than that the pressures compounded by every single voice on motherhood out there}, to weigh her down and crush her spirit.

God didn't design us to bear our own weight; our own burdens. And I find that when I'm most entrenched in motherhood, these are the times I have dug down so deep that I have completely removed myself from His comforting arms. I've forgotten about the One who is in this with me. The One who gave me this task/privilege; the One who entrusted me with these precious ones in the first place. He didn't loan them to me to overwhelm me or to leave me an empty shell of a person. He allowed me to be their mother, and He's given me every resource to do this grand task to the best way I can...as a woman, fallen far from grace, in Himself.

So stop comparing, stop reading so much, and listening too long to the loud voices of motherhood. Let Gods voice be the loudest, and let yourself be okay with the days when "nothing special" ends up being the most special days. And let your kids eat cereal for dinner. (Unless of course, you've run out of milk....which is just what happened to me). :/

Love, Alicia

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