The Big Mom Question


This Mother’s Day as I read the beautiful cards and letters my three amazing kids gave me, I found myself asking myself the same questions I have asked myself a million other times,  “Have I been a good Mother?  Have I been present, loving and supportive?  Have I met all of their needs?   Was I fun? Did I do everything I could have done to provide them with a good, solid foundation? ”  Then I ask myself “Was it even possible to expect myself to accomplish all of this while simultaniouly juggling the demands of being a therapist, life coach and business owner?”

I dread these times when the bully in my brain starts to taunt me and remind me of all of my shortcomings.   “You really are a terrible cook you know!!!   A good mom cooks wonderful, healthy, tasty meals for her children.  She doesn’t rely on her husband to be the chef in the family.  She doesn’t just have a few decent meals she can make maybe once every few months just to relieve her guilt. ”  Yes, this bully just loves to remind me of it all.   “You know you have worked alot over the past few years.  You weren’t home after school most days.”   It really hurts when the bully reminds me of how I sometimes forget things like the few times I have forgoten doctor’s appointments or the one time  I forgot about my daughter’s holiday toy drive party and I had to rush there late looking like a frazzled, worn out mess.

The problem is, I’m not even just okay with being a “Good Mom”,  I want to be an awesome mother, a wonderful mother, THE BEST MOTHER a kid could ask for.   Yes, I have always put alot of pressure on myself.  I worked very part-time until my youngest started school so those first years I was home alot.   I was in the Mom’s Club, I arranged lot’s of play dates, took them to the pumpkin patch, zoo, gymnastic classes, music classes, etc.  I did it all…..except cook…, I have never cooked.    Even during those years when I was home and so involved, I always felt like I could be doing more.   It was never enough in my mind and heart.   I always compared myself to other mom’s who could cook better than me, who were more organized,  or more creative.

So I ask myself if I regret working or starting a business and the answer is always no.   I don’t regret my career and business at all.   I love my work.  It’s a big part of my identity of who  I am.  It’s my passion.   I think my kids would say they are proud of me.  They have seen me work hard to create and build a business.  They have seen me really struggle, they have seen me fail, but they have also seen me succeed.  They have celebrated my success with me. They have seen me completely exhausted, but still show up for them in every way possible that I could.   They have seen me rush out of my office to come home to them if they were having a crisis or experiencing a difficult situation.   They know I would take off for almost every school party, field trip or event thay they wanted me to attend.   They have also seen me a few times have to make the difficult decision to miss something like a game or party because I just had to deal with work.

When I ask my kids, “Have I been a good mom?”   They always say the same thing, “You are the best mom in the World!”   Are they saying that because they know I want to hear it?   Maybe, but I don’t think so.    I may not be able to cook,  I’m not the most organized person in the World, and I can’t sew or knit, lol, but there are a lot of things I can do.

I’ve got the best listening skills a kid could ask for.   I know how to listen without giving advise and I know how to validate their feelings no matter how insiginifant they may seem.   I don’t freak out when they do something wrong because quite honestly, they are much better kids than I was.     I’m the most forgiving person you can meet so they know I won’t stay upset with them very long.   I have never yelled at them in front of their friends (this is a big thing with kids).   I always have an essential oil for whatever their problem is and I can give them amazing Reiki healing energy when they are sad or sick.   I will embarrass myself by doing ridiculous tik toc videos or anything my youngest ever asked me to do.

Most importandly, they trust me.   I will never forget when my son came back from a High School Retreat where he was a Student Leader.   He shared with me that one of the things he chose to discuss was trust.  He said that he knew he could always trust my husband and I.    He explained that not every kid could call their parents when they were in trouble, admit when they failed a test and yes, even when they receive a call from the police for trying to purchase alcohol underage.  He said that he realized that not every kid could tell their parents everything and know that no matter what they would be there for them, support them and help them learn something from it without shaming them.   I know my girls feel the same way.   My kids know that they are the most important thing to me and even though I may not be the best at everything, I certainly do try really, really hard.

While I do know that many men also at times wonder if they have been a “good dad”, but I can’t say it compare to what women put themselves through particularly when they have to juggle a career or work.    We seem to think we have to sacrifice ourselves for our families in order to be seen as a “Great Mom”.

If you are struggling with this, please be kind and gentle with yourself.   Go after your dreams.  Do the very best you can.  Your kids will be okay.


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