After writing out the characteristics of the mother I thought I should be and then letting go of such high expectations of myself, I started to take a closer look at the moms around me. Instead of looking at them in envy and wonder, I began to notice that there are as many types of mothers as there are personalities.
Interestingly, the mothers I wanted to be like the most had personalities much different than my own. My mom, for instance, keeps her house very clean and beautiful. She enjoys housework and loves to be home. She even told me she can go days without talking to anyone and be fine and happy. She wakes up early to pray and enjoys reading in the mid afternoons after her housework is complete. She is structured, disciplined and hardworking.
It finally occurred to me that I was trying to be a mom that didn’t fit my personality. If I went for days without talking to anyone, I would go crazy and be completely depressed. I’ve tried to get on a cleaning schedule and inevitably I fail because something better comes up. I get my energy by being around people. If the phone is ringing I will drop everything to answer it and talk for hours. It’s fun for me to meet friends for play dates, coffee dates and movie nights as often as I can.
I respect and admire people like my mom, but trying to be a quiet, reserved, clean and peaceful mom all the time is just not who I am or what makes me happy. And if I’m not happy, my family is not happy.