Monday, June 17, 2013

My Kids Are Going To Be So Messed Up

Please visit us at our new home:

I am SO not the perfect parent.
My kids will attest to that.

This week, I read a facebook post complaining about moms complaining on facebook (Say that 10 times fast).

I'm sure that it wasn't specifically directed at me because I'm so inconsequential in the life of this person.
But it kicked me in the gut anyway.

I started wondering if I'm a bad mom. 
I was overcome with guilt every time my kids asked me to "look, mom!" or "will you?"

But not in a good, fruitful way. 
Not in the way I re-start paying attention, soaking in every detail of each one of my babies after reading a story like Ronan's

Even with a more-than-usual work load of writing commitments looming over me, a new workshop presentation just days away, a sink full of dishes, and a mountain of laundry, and only an accumulative of 8 hours sleep the last two days, I made sure the kids ate balanced meals at the table with me. We read, we played, we talked, and I catered to every whim of each one of my children all day, attempting to appease the guilt that I took on over this one post.

Half way through our second walk of the day (at the request of Kaylie), it hit me:
If I worked outside the home, I'd be away from my kids ALL. DAY. LONG.
Instantly, my guilt subsided and I felt free to be a work-at-home-homeschooling-mom again.

That night a good friend shared this well-timed article, FOR THE DOG DAYS OF MOTHERHOOD WHEN YOU WANT YOUR MONEY BACK where Lisa-Jo wrote what I needed to hear after feeling the effects of that facebook post: 

I am convinced that the God who made you, sculpted you, loved you into being considers your story just as important as the work of rescuing women from the slums in Kenya or the traffickers in Ukraine
Even on the days when no one knows what you did. Maybe most especially on those days. When there are no awards or headlines or standing ovations. I believe that the God who began this work in and through you will carry it, and you if necessary, across the finish line
And that He understands tired. He gets needing space. He’s lived the burnout of too many demanding hands all tugging at the same time. This Jesus-brother-human-maker who on the day when “so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat,” said to his friends, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.”
He does get it.

I'll bet after thinking it was impossible to ever have a child of her own and finally being blessed with Isaac, even Sarah just wanted to use the bathroom without an audience once in a while.

So am I a bad mom?

You bet I am.
Because there is no perfect parent. 
No matter how hard I try, I will always be found lacking.

I know that no matter what I do or how many parenting books I read I'm going to screw up my kids.
It's inevitable.
Even the talented moms on Pinterest are flawed somewhere in their parenting. 

But my hope is NOT in my own abilities.

That's why I pray that God will cover my parenting shortcomings with His grace.

And I want my kids to see my weaknesses because God says that's where He is strongest.

Not only does this take the pressure off of having to strive for perfection, but it also gives my kids permission to learn alongside me as a flawed human who Christ had to die for.

Christ is perfect so that, by His grace, I don't have to be

What lies of perfection have you been believing?

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Find more of Genevieve West's insights & antics:
Twitter @GenevieveWest