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Mendo Lake Family Life

Moms Aren’t Perfect

By Kimberly Blaker

Irealized when you look at your mother, you are looking at the purest love you will ever know.”
—Mitch Albom

As moms, we all know Albom’s statement is unequivocally true. We feel it through and through, from the moment our children are born. Our love and devotion are evident in our daily interactions with, and selfless acts for, our kids. Even after they’re grown, our deep love and concern for them endure.

We don’t always recognize or give ourselves credit for all we do (and sometimes, to our frustration, our children don’t either). And when we do err, we’re often our own harshest critics, comparing ourselves to others who appear to have the qualities we do not. But in reality, all moms have strengths and weaknesses. In most ways, we totally rock. In some areas, we have to work a little harder.

My own mom was very involved and provided us plenty of enrichment and fun. We did crafts, played games, had parties and sleepovers, took trips to the library, went for walks and bike rides, and so much more. My mom was also a Camp Fire Girls leader for my younger sisters, and I got to be her big helper. My mom cooked, baked, and kept a clean home. She also taught me about money, responsibility, generosity, kindness, and so many other valuable lessons, skills, and traits.

Still, like any other human, she was imperfect. So when my kids were born, I strove to do things differently, i.e. perfectly.

Needless to say, I fell far short of my ideal.

Thankfully, now that my kids are grown, my mom points out what a great mom I’ve been. For instance, she admires my patience with my kids, though it ran, and still runs, thin at times. (As I mentioned, moms are particularly good at noticing in others the traits they lack.)

Her appreciation makes me think about what I see in my own daughter, who’s now raising two young kids. I notice how much time she spends just cuddling them. I’ve always wished I had done better with that. Not that we never cuddled. I’ve just never been good at relaxing or sitting still for long.

The point is each and every mom is wonderful in her own ways—and none of us does everything right. In fact, always striving to be perfect can undermine being the best moms we can be. And it can even lead to expecting perfection from our kids, which is unhealthy.

So am I saying we shouldn’t try to be better moms? Of course not. But while we are striving to improve our weaknesses, we need to practice self-forgiveness and self-acceptance, and teach our children to do the same. Rather than shooting for an unobtainable goal, focus on being the best mom you can be.

Remember: Your deep love and devotion to your kids is what truly matters. You will always be of unsurpassable value to them, no matter what. 

Kimberly Blaker is a freelance parenting writer and founder of the Internet marketing agency KB Creative Digital Services (