When Motherhood Is Not Ideal

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Bet I caught your attention with that title, huh?

It's not what you think -- or is it? Before you became a mom (or if you are not yet a mother) I bet you had an image in your head of what motherhood would look like.

In a word, perfect. Right? We thought of all the positive and good (and easy) elements of being a mother; starting with the title.

But as you went through countless, sleepless nights, raging hormones which lead into toddler tantrums (yes, they exist), sibling rivalry, and strong wills, the picture of perfection became tainted. You wondered if you could do anything right, and because of that false ideal of perfection, you believe you're doing everything wrong.

Parenting is like a marriage commitment. It's a "for better or worse" kind of commitment. And you don't necessarily need to leave home to give up. You just need to "check out". Pour yourself into something other than the gift of mothering and you give up, settling for something easier.

But you lose the reward in the end and the trade off is not worth it.

There is no "ideal motherhood". I think the sooner we embrace that truth, the quicker we can get back to pouring into our children and accepting motherhood for what it is: beautifully imperfect.

If we are constantly focusing on trying to perfect the imperfections of motherhood, it will build nothing more than constant dissatisfaction.

Instead, focus on the beauty of it. Put your energies into making memories that last and laughing big belly laughs.

Hard work is inevitable. There is no way around that if you are looking to raise children with a strong love for the Lord. But pouring our energies into all the negatives will drain us and frustrate our children.

You'd be surprised at what intentional time spent with your children will do for their direction and behavior. When they feel loved by us showing it, they have a strong sense of security. And we all know, love is spelled T-I-M-E.

What can you do to to shift your focus from the less than ideal, to the beauty of mothering?

By Christin, Joyful Mothering

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Christin

Christin is wife of 16 years to her high school sweetheart and mother to seven children. She looks for beauty in the simple and appreciates a good cup of coffee. She is learning to live everyday with joy, find gratitude in the mundane, and speak words of grace. You can find Christin writing through her days on her blog, christinslade.com.

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