The Mom Heart: when parenting style doesn't matter
If someone does not parent the way you do or did, look past it.
Look past it to see a mom heart. Behind whatever a mom's parenting style is, there is a mom heart bursting with love and forgetfulness, laughter and hair pulling, lists, tickle fights and too much Elmo. Questioning if we are doing this thing right at every step and wanting nothing but the absolute best for our littles. Every mom heart looks a lot alike.
I am not a bad mom because I didn't breastfeed my child until they were a toddler.
I am not a crazy mom if I did.
I am not a pushover mom if my boys slept in my room until they were one and I still rock them to sleep.
I am not a bad mom if I co-slept or let them cry it out.
I am not a bad mom if I feed my children peanut butter and jelly on white bread, let them sleep in their bouncy and send them to daycare if I need to work.
I am not an overprotecter if I only feed them organic food, baby wear, and homeschool.
If I look put together or am in sweats, volunteer for everything or nothing, work in an office or at home, grow my food or grocery shop, I am still a mom just like you.
I am a pretty good mom.
You are a great mom.
Say it out loud, "I am a great mom."1
So, enough already.
Enough of the high and mighty from all sides.
Enough of feeling not enough as a momma. Enough.
God created you to be your exact kids momma. You. For a reason. He knows you, He sees you, He knows your kiddos heart and it was made for you to raise in exactly the style He knew you would have. Do it the way you feel called to, not the way you feel pressured to from the world, Pinterest or that mom you envy who seems to have it all. You are going to make mistakes, often. But you just keep loving and learning and loving some more the way only you can love.
I was thrust into lots of kids all at once so I thrive on schedule, organization and routine as do my boys. If another mom takes things as it comes and it works for her family- good. Do what works. Don't make me feel like I am too much because of the way I mother or don't mother. Don't make someone else feel like if they formula feed, are a stay at home mom, live by schedule, or vaccinate their kids that they are less. We all try to hold ourselves to an impossible standard. Let go of that. Trust your mothering and be your own kind of mom.
We mothers push and pull and fall down and get back up on this motherhood journey and we just don't know what we are doing on some days. What we do know, is love. Let's show that love to the other moms we see in the grocery line buying pop tarts or organic cheese- doesn't matter. We all need support, encouragement, and a shoulder to hug when we have a hard day. We all do. That momma, is comradarie no matter our parenting style. That is the mommas heart we need to see. Love, encourage, come alongside in tears or laughter, and speak life to that mom heart. The constant advice giving, questioning, and judging needs to stop. Say, "hey there you are doing great. Cute kid." whether the baby is smiling in that grocery cart or melting down. The mom heart. See that. Encourage that.
Love Jesus. Model Him to your kids. Love them through His eyes the best possible way you know how. Keep growing, learning, praying and running to Him for help. Be a present, godly example to your kids. That, to me, is good parenting. All the other stuff, well, it's just stuff.
Mother on momma, mother on. :)
Honestly with love,