Declare Yourself “Good Enough!”
Jennifer Hector, MA, LMFT
It’s May and Mother’s Day is just around the corner. The giving of cards, flowers and special outings for mom are the focus of the day in celebration of mom’s efforts. On this day I also see an opportunity for moms to annually affirm that “good enough” mothering is enough and to rally around shedding the guilt produced from expecting motherly perfection.
Why not take this moment of Mother’s day to review your mothering barometer. Are your expectations of yourself above and beyond; are you aiming for perfection? Have you been letting other’s judgments and opinions of your actions heap upon your shoulders and generate doubt in your parenting? In your race to do the right thing and provide the best experiences, have you forgotten to slow down and listen, hug and play? Have you given up your basic needs for the needs of your family?
If you answered yes to any one of these, I invite you to use Mother’s Day as a time to reflect on what has accumulated over the year that clouds your sense of your basic motherly goodness, best efforts and intentions, compassion for yourself and self-care. Reset your inner mothering barometer to a balanced reading beginning at “good enough.”
Children need imperfect parenting. It’s actually a necessity for them to learn how to tolerate frustration, how to self-soothe when things don’t go as planned, how to tackle challenges and build confidence, how to ask for help and solve problems. These and more are essential life skills that are needed to navigate the world. When mothers aren’t perfect in predicting or preventing every little fall, upset or challenge, it provides the opportunity for the successful experience of change and the capacity to weather it together.