There's a pretty neat video that has been making the social media rounds about being a Mom. The video starts out asking the Moms to describe themselves as a mother. Each and every one of them said something negative about how they parent. I wish I was more confident, I need to learn to listen more, I'm not very patient, on and on it went. Then they sat their children down and asked them to describe their Moms. Their answer? My Mom loves me so much, my Mom is beautiful, my Mom is my hero. We always tend to view ourselves from a critical lens, having way too high of expectations and not enough grace. The standard I sometimes set for myself is unattainable. It still doesn't keep me for reaching for it, to be the ideal "super Mom" even though I know it's an impossible goal. It is hard being a single parent. Really hard. I never in a million years thought this would be the path my life would take. When you're a single Mom you don't have that partner there with you to help mold, guide and discipline your child. My son is getting to the age where he's really starting to explore, learn and grow. That also means he's learning what things he can and can't do and learning what his boundaries are. When it's just you there's no moment where you can rest and let someone take over being the "bad guy". My eye has to be firmly on him and I have to be ready to teach and correct him at all times. I'm thankful for the help that I have from family but the buck truly stops with me and always will. At the end of the day, some days, it leaves me feeling exhausted and like I'm not doing a very good job. I don't have Joel with me to encourage me, to help me make the tough decisions, and to spur me on. It's a big change to get used to on top of also dealing with the change of losing your best friend. I never thought I'd have to do this alone. I never wanted to do this alone.
Joel was really good at writing me little encouraging notes and leaving them around. After he died I found this note that he had written me months ago and I'd put it in a drawer. I laminated it and keep it with me at all times. When I'm having a challenging parenting day I will get this note out and look at it and remember that I'm doing the best I can. It helps to know and have the confidence that I had a husband who loved me and had all the confidence in the world for the mother of his son. He saw me in action and thought that I should be proud of myself. To know that he was proud of me will always mean the world to me.
Still many days I'm just like the women in this video that say they wish they could've done better at many things. And if they filmed my son, years down the road, asking him what he thinks of his Mommy? My biggest hope would be he would be just like the little boy in the video who smiled and said "My Mommy's my hero."