I share a lot of activities of my son in my WhatsApp status. Majority of it includes art and craft we do together. Some include household chores he does and others talk about his moments with each family member at home.
And this blog sparks from a conversation I had with a friend recently. She said, “It seems you are winging parenting. You keep Rey so occupied in such meaningful activities and balance work so well too. Looking at you feels like you are doing such a great job at it. The perfect parent.”
The truth –
Well as much as I would like to bask in that glory of the perfect parent, I want to say it out loud here – “I am far from a perfect parent”. With a childhood where one of my parents was emotionally unavaible and have had worked with the inner child healing for clients, I took it on me to act the perfect parent at the onset of it. And gradually realised, well the hard truth…one can never be the perfect parent. I kept on thinking what if my son misbehaves or throws a tantrum (now call it big emotions), how will that look on a mother who helps in inner child healing for clients. I was always very aware of what ‘others’ think about me and my parenting choices. To say the least, it was exhausting to keep up the charade and I let it go. I went for natural parenting methods instead of ‘look like a perfect parent on the outside’ style.
It was so liberating.
But as much as the happy and joyful moments of parenthood are captured, the ugly truth most of the times is buried down. You don’t take pictures of kids crying. Today I am going to open that pandora’s box right here for you as a mother who knows me that “No, I am not perfect. And yes, I have had my dark moments too”.
I remember the day when Rey cried for 1.5 hours for something which couldn’t be undone. He threw a leaf from the terrace and wanted it back. I tried explaining it to him and yet the crying did not stop. I did not know what best to do than to hold him tight. The nights when sleep eluded him and I had to give him warnings in the most harsh way because I was simply exhausted. On resenting for not getting 5 minutes to myself to read or to look at my mobile in peace. Of taking the frustration of the bad day on him at the smallest triggers. Of being the imperfect mess called a mom.
Yes ALL of it!
So mommy, if you think my life as a mom is perfect. Well it is not. It is a hot mess on days when I cry to myself on how to handle the toddler. Guilt trips for not doing enough. Or wanting to have another life somewhere far.
What has helped though is –
- Checking my triggers and not projecting it on him. Journaling and seeking answers.
- Taking out some time for myself even if means 5 minutes a day.
- Making peace with the fact that parenting is an ever learning journey. So taking one day at a time.
- When guilt hits the roof, talking with other moms and listening to some guilt releasing meditation. You can find one here.
- Seeking other caregivers’ help which I still find a little difficult to implement.
- Being gentle with myself when the days are tough.
I hope Mommy, this blog brings you hope and the knowing that parenting isn’t easy. And all of us are navigating it our ways. And what really matters is not labelling our parenting journey as good or bad with one off incidents. Rather making this journey a conscious one being aware of each moment and soaking in all the emotions.
One day our kids will be grown ups, and we will smile at this journey called parenthood which wasn’t perfect but full of ups and downs and yet worth all of it!