Dear Mama, You Were Set Up to Feel Like a Failure

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You have read all the tips, hacks, Facebook groups and still don’t feel like you have found success.

It’s like you didn’t even know what overwhelmed felt like until the word mom joined your list of titles.

You juggle a thousand responsibilities every day and yet it never seems like enough.

I get you.

I know what it feels like and how no matter how hard you try, the world seems stacked up against you.

But here is the thing that I have slowly realized over time. In a lot of ways, we were set up to fail.

And I’m not even talking about how hard parenting can be sometimes. I am talking about things that are out of your control.

I am talking about what it means to be a mother in today’s world.

You have read all the tips, hacks, Facebook groups and still don’t feel like you have found success. It’s like you didn’t even know what overwhelmed felt like until the word mom joined your list of titles. You juggle a thousand responsibilities every day and yet it never seems like enough. But here is the thing that I have slowly realized over time. In a lot of ways, we were set up to fail.

You were never meant to do it all on your own

The old saying it takes a village to raise a child has a lot of merit but as the world becomes more global, more people are less likely to live near family.

If you don’t live near family, then you don’t have relatives nearby to help you out. 

I had never been jealous of people who live near their parents until I had kids. I would give anything to be able to just drop my kids off once in a while so we could go on a date.

You have to live up to an unrealistic standard

Social media paints a beautiful picture of fake happiness. Instagram is the worst when it comes to this. When I started following mom influencers, I had never felt so awful and depressed about my life. 

My daughter and I aren’t twinning everyday on the beach doing yoga poses. Most days, I am lucky if I get through the day without stains on my clothing.

Your mind forgets that they too live a “real” life and what you see is motherhood through rose tinted glasses. 

And let’s not forget the judgement

I asked a group of moms how they get their toddlers to eat vegetables. There were over seven parents in the group. The responses I got were along the lines of “oh we don’t have a problem”, “my toddler eats everything” and “she absolutely loves broccoli, it’s her favorite food.”

Really… I am the only one with a 3-year-old who won’t eat every dinner I make? Really?

What happened to being real? Honestly, though I get it, I avoid answering honestly sometimes just because I’m afraid of the judgement.  

Because it is so damn hard to find a mom friend

I have never felt so lonely in my whole life as I do as a mom. And I am certain it isn’t just me since there are now even apps to try to help you make mom friends.

However, over time I started to realize just why it is so hard to find a good mom friend or get that much needed adult socialization.

First, you need to find a mom who has kids in the same age range and if that was all, that wouldn’t be so hard.

Now here is where it gets tricky.

The age range women have their first kid is wider than ever before. Awesome because you can have a kid when it is the right time for you, but it’s harder to find a mom in the same stage of life as you. It seems that I had my kids a decade too young for where I live.

The next challenge to making friends is finding someone who has a similar schedule. Moms stay at home, work, or work from home, which is so great in many ways, but not for finding friends.  

Lastly, we live in a society where everything is online. We don’t know our neighbors. In today’s world if someone rings the doorbell, your first thought might be to call the cops.

You can’t have it all because eventually something will have to give

The number of things I have to prioritize in my life right now is a complete joke. The house, my kids, my marriage, my career, the never-ending to-do list, and don’t forget self-care.

When in college, I found so much truth in the saying you can only have two of the three: sleep, good grades, social life. Motherhood is no different expect you have like ten things to prioritize without even thinking about sleep or a social life.

You can’t prioritize everyone and everything. I find the cartoons of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd children differences hilarious because eventually you just can’t.

And yet at the same time I also know that no matter how hard it gets, I will always give it my all. When I read my kids The Giving Tree, all I think now is “yep, I am totally that stump”.

But mama, you aren’t failing

There are many challenges to being a mom in today’s world. And despite all of it, I promise you that you are anything but failing.

You are doing great!

Just remember when you feel like you are not good enough, remember you are. And that many of the reasons motherhood is so hard might be out of your control.

So, when you think it’s just you, know that I am out there also. I believe in you and know that we are both facing all of these things together. 

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You have read all the tips, hacks, Facebook groups and still don’t feel like you have found success. It’s like you didn’t even know what overwhelmed felt like until the word mom joined your list of titles. You juggle a thousand responsibilities every day and yet it never seems like enough. But here is the thing that I have slowly realized over time. In a lot of ways, we were set up to fail.

 

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