Embracing Mom Imperfectionism

Embracing Mom Imperfectionism

I’m crazy excited for my family’s first ever trip to Disney World this week. To kick off the week Disney style, I’m throwing some fairytale fun into this post.

You can imagine the number of fairytales I read these days to my nearly 4 year-old daughter. Cinderella. Snow White. Sleeping Beauty. I love the magical world of princesses and happily ever after as much as my little girl does.

But have you noticed these stories always end before the princesses become moms? It seems logical to me. We all know there’s no such thing as the perfect mom. Even the great writers of these legendary fables knew they couldn’t sell that.

Perfect moms are like men who give back rubs without expecting sex in return. They just don’t exist.

Motherhood is what it is. Challenging. Rewarding. Imperfect.

I’ve finally learned to accept and embrace my mom imperfectionism. In fact, I celebrate it often with a deliciously intoxicating glass of red wine. And cake.

Moms make mistakes. So? We’re human. Is there a better lesson for our kids than seeing their mom admit she’s made a mistake and apologize for it?

I hope you don’t get the wrong idea. This isn’t about pessimism. Or self-deprecation. And I have no appreciation for half-ass efforts. I simply believe human beings are beautifully flawed.

Imperfectionism can be difficult to embrace sometimes. I know, because I’m still inherently offended when my 17 year-old scary-teenage-know-it-all son tells me I’m not so good at being his mom when he’s not getting what he wants. It’s easier when I remember to appreciate the challenging aspects of motherhood, too.

The Imperfect Mom is the new Stepford Wife.

Remember the pop culture era of the robots stepford wives? The idea that life, marriage and motherhood were as easy to navigate as breathing. A belief that women could indeed be absolutely perfect. Ugh. I’m personally quite grateful for the imperfect mom movement of today.

I’m definitely no Cinderella or Snow White. I think they would have been stepford wives. They could clean an entire castle without breaking a sweat. Me? I get caught by the UPS guy while vacuuming the foyer without my top, sweat-absorbing paper towel sheets sticking out from beneath my bra.

Yes, I’m often relegated by life and motherhood back to that place of humility, speechlessness and imperfectionism. And that’s exactly where I belong.

Read Part II of this Topic: Reflecting on Mom Imperfectionism Again

  • http://jenniferdawnmclucas.com Jennifer Dawn McLucas

    Thanks Kelli! You’ve got me in stitches again and also deep in thought. I’ve recently spent some time on sites where moms are “training” their daughters to be wives and moms and I think it’s such a fascinating idea. I was trained for all kinds of things, but keeping house and loving my imperfect family was not part of my education. As an adult I have tried to educate myself, but I can’t help but wonder if I would be better at this if I had been taught when I was younger. I don’t expect my daughters to grow up to only be wives and mothers, but I know from experience it will be the most difficult roles they play. How do I teach them to do it well? Not to make them perfect, but just in hopes that they will struggle less than I have.

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Hi Jennifer! I think the only answer is, for me, we do the best we can and have faith. :)

  • http://frugalfoodallergies.com Lindsey

    What a fabulous post Kelli, as always :) You had me rolling when you described your state when the UPS guy made a delivery. That’s so me, lol. Thank you for the reminder that it’s okay not to be ‘just so’.
    Jennifer, I’ve noticed the same thing! I think that training our daughters is simply teaching them how to care for a home, how to cook for a family, etc. I knew how to cook and such when I left home, but I didn’t know my mom’s systems, how she did it all. I had my list of chores and that was that. I floundered for a few years trying to figure things out on my own. I think showing our daughters exactly what we do to keep it our homes operating as smoothly as possible is probably one of the most helpful things we can do as mothers. Once you have a system you can tweak it and modify it to suit your particular life situation.

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Thank you, Lindsey! Stupid stuff always happens to me. I’m a magnet for the ridiculous. I could write a book. ;)

  • http://mommetime.me Amy

    …. “Perfect moms are like men who give back rubs without expecting sex in return. They just don’t exist.” bahahahahaha AND the description of what happens when your cleaning and the ups guy shows up…hilarious!

    Oh how I relate! Oddly, enough and contrary to what I thought when I was much younger and knew absolutely everything… there is a bit of freedom and growth in not being perfect!

    Great Post!

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Thanks, Amy. So glad you can relate! I totally agree with your perspective on freedom and growth.

  • http://www.rubberchickenmadness.com Kimberly

    Absolutely true! Love the image of you vacuuming, clad in a bra with the Bounty sheets sticking out. Sounds like a day in my world. Hope the UPS guy got a little thrill :)

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Ha! I think he may have been traumatized! ;)

  • http://www.homesandbabies.com Becky

    Ah, perfectionism, that’s so last year. :) Not Your Ordinary Agent
    Not Your Ordinary Recipes

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      I know, right! :)

  • http://www.literalmom.com Missy | The Literal Mom

    Yes, exactly. I love the way you worded this. And have a great time at Disney!

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Thanks so much, Missy!

  • http://www.howtocrochetabeanie.com Delz

    Loved your post. Brings humor to “our” crazy world. Motherhood has been trying this year with health issues for my daughter. One day at a time and healing everyday. I read something today that touched my heart! “Yes, I’m often relegated by life and motherhood back to that place of humility, speechlessness and imperfectionism. And that’s exactly where I belong.” Thank you

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      I’m so sorry to hear you and your daughter are having a tough time. Dealing with health issues is always the hardest. Hang in there! Thank you for your kind words. I’m glad to have at least helped to brighten one moment for you through the post. :)

  • http://nutrendmedia.com.au/ Becca

    Glad my hubby and kids embracing my imperfection. They love me despite of it.
    i’m loving my life!!

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Glad to hear it! :)

      • momto2boys

        You’re doing great! I have a 7th grader, and I believe that we may have your “pre-Buckeye” issue, although I hope to use your experience to avoid acceptance based only on test scores. Overachieving mommies = smart boys used to benefitting from overachieving mommies. That’s my theory, and I include myself in that group. Thank you for your honest posts.

  • MaryLauren

    Love this more than you know!!

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Thank you, Mary Lauren! It makes me happy to know I’m able to put something out there that other moms everywhere can truly relate to.

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  • MedicMom

    You have no idea how much I needed to read this today.

    Thanks. I will be following you now!

    • http://sweetnessoflife.com Kelli

      Glad to have been able to give you a little lift, as little as it may be. Hang in there! Thank you for following. :)

  • momto2boys

    You’re doing great! I have a 7th grader, and I believe that we may have your “pre-Buckeye” issue, although I hope to use your experience to avoid acceptance based only on test scores. Overachieving mommies = smart boys used to benefitting from overachieving mommies. That’s my theory, and I include myself in that group. Thank you for your honest posts.

    • http://kellihood.com/ Kelli Nelson

      Thank you for your support. Love your theory!

  • Lisa

    I am soooo going to accept that I am not a perfect mother, housewife, business woman.  I could be perfect at any of them, but not all.  I seriously missed the boat when it came to learning to multi-task.

    • http://SweetnessOfLife.com/ Kelli

      I think we can be happier if we accept imperfectionism. :) 

      Thanks for stopping by, Lisa!

  • http://www.newbabygiftboxes.co.uk/ Lisa

    I am soooo going to accept that I am not a perfect mother, housewife, business woman.  I could be perfect at any of them, but not all.  I seriously missed the boat when it came to learning to multi-task.

    • http://kellihood.com/ Kelli Nelson

      I think we can be happier if we accept imperfectionism. :) 

      Thanks for stopping by, Lisa!

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  • QueenMomJen

    Moms can be imperfect? Never :) Love this post! Being perfect would just plain be no fun. I have the best memories of the times I flubbed, learned and laughed or cringed about it. Those battle scars have made me who I am and I am proud to wear them.
    http://www.practicallyperfectprincess.com

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