What would people do without an array of Worlds Best Mom mugs in every conceivable color? How would we survive the day without the exhausting reminder that we never make mistakes? I’ve come to understand we’re all stinking hard on ourselves. It’s a regular boxing match in my house and not between my kids. Culpability has a way of creeping up late at night when the kids are soundly tucked into bed. Cue the guilt trip. This particular journey is a wild one with many twists and turns that usually end with the kind of sobbing that leaves you questioning a possible eye infection or binge eating your children’s Easter candy.
When I was a kid I fully believed my parents had the answers to everything. It’s what I call Parental Acting 101. What still shocks me to this day is when the corny innuendos shoot out of my mouth that should have died with the ’80s. We didn’t just inherit genes from our families.
In full confession, I don’t know what the heck I am doing from one day to the next. I rely on my mommy friends to talk me off the ledge of doubt. I know deep down inside perfection will never be attainable. I should be happy my kids are healthy and not fighting with each other but I still lay with the guilt over small things I can’t even remember at the moment. It’s what keeps me up at night with the nagging feeling I completely failed and need to start a therapy fund as soon as possible.
The truth is, my parents weren’t perfect. I don’t remember the mistakes they made. What stays with me is the love, support, and forgiveness they expressed throughout my life. We don’t need to aspire for flawlessness. We just need to lean into the lessons we’ve learned, share our experiences with others and enjoy all those wonderful mugs stashed in the cupboard.