I'm not the perfect mum and that's ok

I’m not a perfect mum and that’s ok

I used to always visualise myself as the perfect Stepford wife and mother. I would imagine my life to be filled with baking, perfectly behaved children, play dates and walks around the park. The reality has been a bit different and even though I wouldn’t change my children for the world I wish I could have changed my expectations earlier on to save myself from so much guilt.

Aww wasn't I cute
Aww wasn’t I cute

Since I was a child myself all I’ve ever wanted is to be married and a mummy, I used to play getting married to my cat (lol) and used to always be playing with my dolls. My baby doll was called Hannah and I took her everywhere with me, but sometimes my cat Dinkey would get dressed in one of my old baby grows and get pushed around the house. I remember actually counting down the years as a child until I would be able to have a child, which I always figured would be 29 like my mother. I fell in love at 20 and went on to be married at 23 and pregnant with my child a few weeks later, so I didn’t manage to stick to plan like my intentions.

Dinkey being spoon fed. Poor cat.
Dinkey being spoon fed. Poor cat.

My own mother has always made it look so effortless and I just assumed my expectations of life would be the same. My mum even told me her labour pains had been like period pains and being constipated, didn’t last long and she didn’t need the gas and air. My mum was either lying or has an amazing pain threshold, as my labour couldn’t have been more different.  We grew up in a big house down a private road in Biddenham,Bedfordshire, my dad worked from home and my mum worked for my dad, our house was like a showhome and we had every toy we could have imagined. My childhood at home with my mum and sister was perfect in my eyes, but I’m sure I don’t remember the struggles my mum had gone through to keep a house that size clean, the financial side of my parents having to sell the home which they had built together to downsize. My parents hid everything for us and we were blissfully unaware.

For the first two years of parenting I kept it all in check and lived out my dream as I had planned, we did long walks in the park, we baked, we did play dates and we even got out the bastard play doh. The thing is one child is a lot easier than two and is 100% twice the work and Miss J was an exceptional easier baby and toddler than her brother. Once I was pregnant I started to find it tough, I didn’t have the energy to keep up with my daughter as much especially with SPD, but I told myself once the baby was here it would be nice and lovely and easy again. I can’t believe how naive and stupid I was. Mr T had reflux, didn’t sleep and was generally a hard baby and I had a toddler who resented him for taking so much of her mummy’s time away.

My real life doll.
My real life doll.

It’s been a long 18 months, but eventually my daughter bonded with her baby brother and I’m learning to let go of the guilt. I know I’m far from perfect and I know I never will be, but at the end of my day my children our mostly happy, they are clean, they have full tummies, too many bloody toys and a rather messy house to live in. My expectations have had to be lowered so the mummy guilt doesn’t consume me and add to my postnatal depression. My house will not be tidy for years to come and no one gives a rats ass if my windows are covered in finger prints. I am doing my best even if we are just surviving from day-to-day at times. This stage will not last forever and these children won’t always be small, but the house can wait and I will appreciate them whilst they are still young enough to need me so much. Play doh may come out on the odd occasion, we will bake together if its someones birthday and we will go for walks in the park when we have the energy and patience. I won’t beat myself up if I don’t achieve everything I have had planned I will praise myself for what we did manage.

I am not the perfect mum and I never will be and I will not punish myself anymore for this.

Read embracing the rubbish parent

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40 thoughts on “I’m not a perfect mum and that’s ok

  1. Bravo, we all do our best and that should be enough. Precisely why I called my blog Diary of an imperfect mum. I have learned to embrace my imperfections as all that matters to me is the relationship I have with my children and they love me to bits 🌸 #FamilyFun
    Catie recently posted…Do accents still matter?My Profile

  2. Well said. No one is perfect. I’m glad you’re no longer being so hard on yourself. I would love to have a second child. I’m also worried that I’ll struggle to cope, but sometimes we just need to get through each day and maybe that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Thanks for sharing #fortheloveofblog
    Lucy’s Locket recently posted…A few of my favourite things: NurseryMy Profile

  3. I don’t think anyone is a perfect mother. We all put too much pressure on ourselves get consumed by mum guilt and worry we are not what we should be. Being a mum is hard but as long as your children are loved and safe then to my mind that’s the most important. The house can wait and we can always go on the walk tomorrow. Thanks for sharing at #familyfun
    Tammymum recently posted…#FamilyFun…Week 11My Profile

  4. I do love this post. We are constantly bombarded with images and ideas of perfection – the perfect home, the perfect body, the perfect flippin’ mummy, and I truly believe it’s mostly b****cks 😀 Thank you for being one of the honest ones.

  5. Well said! I had exactly the same dreams and came down to earth with an almighty bump after having my first. It took me a long time to let go of my own unrealistic expectations but now I have I can see everyone is much happier. Yes, the house is a mess most of the time but it won’t always be like this. #marvmondays

  6. We all have great days, we all have crap days, we all hate the mess that play doh makes! I think we really have to celebrate the small parenting wins to make life just a little easier on us. Parenting never, ever lives up to it’s expectations because kids are full of suprises and it’s a tough job to do! #MarvMondays
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  7. I can resonate so much with this. I have a four and 2 year old and even now I find it so so hard. Some days Andre easier than others, especially now that my son is at school but two is definately much harder than one. I never imagined I’d be a perfect mum as I’d ealise there’s no such thing, but admittedly I did think I would have more patience and understanding than I actually have. Also, I knew it’d be hard, but I didn’t know it would be THIS hard. Like you say though, my kids are happy, fed, watered, clean and loved so at least I’m getting the basics right and full filling their needs. We’re all just doing the best we can.
    #marvmondays
    Janine (Unhinged Mummy) recently posted…Feeling FestiveMy Profile

  8. I try hard to strip the ‘P’ word, perfect, from the vocabulary. It’s the easiest way to set yourself up to fail. Now that alone took ten years of therapy to figure out…but, it is an aside now and for that I am forever grateful. Keep on doing! Making memories is way better that a clean house. #GlobalBlogging

  9. I was exactly the same as you, all I dreamed about when I was younger was getting married, having children and staying at home to look after them. I would often say “I don’t see the point of having children if you go back to work and someone else is looking after them”. Now I’m back at work full time, feeling like a crappy mum because I can’t do all the things I want to do with my son. But he’s happy and I know I’m working towards building a better future for him and he won’t remember me being at work. We all do what we can to get by #MarvMondays

  10. This is like reading my life! I too had the same perfect mum vision and my daughter was far easier than my son! I could barely move for being tired and the SPD was a nightmare! Hopefully they will sleep better soon! #MarvMondays
    Amie recently posted…Educational Toddler TVMy Profile

  11. I’m having a rather trying week myself. Deep breathe I keep saying. Just keep swimming… We do our best and we are great mothers – that’s why feel guilty. We wouldn’t care so much if we were bad moms. I definitely need to stop punishing myself! Lovely read. Thank you for sharing with us at #globalblogging x

  12. Aww bless you! Mummy guilt is the worst and gets us all! It sounds like you are doing an amazing job. We just had our second baby five months ago and it is definitely not a walk in the park. These little ones keep me on my toes, Im exhausted, never get to sit down and feel like im constantly tidying up. Im always berating myself for not doing as much or taking them out as much as I would like to and need to get better at being ok with that. Hopefully you are too 🙂 Thanks for sharing such an honest and open post on #MarvMondays. Emily

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