You are not a failure.
...Is what I had to tell myself one day last week after forgetting to make time to get the usual few mid-week groceries. For the second day in a row.
I didn't cry over spilled milk; I cried over no milk. What mother forgets twice to get the few things her family needs? Sometimes it's not just forgotten trips to the store; it's dust bunnies that have been around long enough to be named and petrified cereal discovered within the sofa cushions after being discarded there who knows how long. Or forgetting that Alabama's fall only lasts three days and the kids' winter jackets from last year are now elbow length. Or realizing you’ve fallen asleep without giving your husband so much as a “good night” for days.
As mothers it's really easy to look around our homes and within our lives/circumstances to note all the ways we feel as though we are falling short. Sometimes I think it's just our human tendency (especially in motherhood) to look for things for which we can improve. What's less common is to take time to highlight all the good and positive things we are contributing – the million little victories and joys that help hold all of our moments together.
In situations where I want to complain about how there just isn’t enough time in the day, things aren’t going as I envisioned, or am simply just allowing negativity in, I am trying to practice being more mindful and intentional with my time, words, and attitude. I am working on mentally taking a step back from my circumstances to reflect not only on the positive aspects, but also consider what this particular situation or season is teaching me.
So fellow mama, wherever you are in your journey, let’s give ourselves the same grace we would give to a dear friend. Let’s take a second to back away from unhealthy thoughts, and give ourselves permission to slow down enough to give attention to the small, beautiful details right in front of us. We don’t have to see the whole picture to trust that it’s beautiful.
<3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3
“But God sees you. He designed this parenting journey, after all. He understands the chaos of motherhood. And he joins you in everything…”
- Excerpt from Long Days of Small Things by Catherine McNiel