Land Mines on the Mommy Road

I had a conversation with a friend the other day regarding party favors for her two year old’s Mother’s Day Out class.

This friend has a great, demanding, and rewarding career that most men in her field would covet. She’s super involved with her church and with a philanthropic group in her community. On top of all this, she has her own family and all of the obligations and duties included with that.

In other words? She’s short on time. Yet she felt unbelievable pressure to come up with something so elaborate, so creative, and so time consuming for a party favor for a classroom of two year olds, who likely won’t even spend two seconds playing with them.

Why did she do it? Because the other mommies were expecting it, of course. And she was expecting it of herself, honestly. Who wants to look like she can’t keep up with the best of the Pinterest crowd?

I think there are thousands of potential land mines on this mommy road we travel on. It starts well before the babies are even born, unfortunately, as we spend pregnancy discussing how we’re woman enough to go with natural childbirth, how we’re cloth diapering, and how we’ll never let our babies have formula. Then, the babies get here, and we’re determined to be the best mothers ever by everyone’s standards and we’re determined that our babies are going to be the most advanced, most intelligent, and most beautiful ever by everyone’s standards. Unfortunately, though “everyone’s standards” are wide and varied, so it’s quite impossible to meet them all. You’re losing from the get-go, Mommy!

At this point, on my mommy journey? I’m exhausted by it. I’m not Super Mom, I’m a failure by Pinterest standards, and I consider it a victory if my five year old will go to school without crying, even if she doesn’t learn anything. Maybe I’m too much of a realist, but I know that there are some standards out there that just aren’t going to be met by the Faulks. So, we’re just not going to spend our energy and effort playing a game that no one wins anyway.

I’m wondering, as I think on this and see the reality lived out daily, what we WILL focus our energy on. The need and urgency for us is clear — if our girls need anything, they need Christ, and right now, as they’re being formed into the adults they’ll spend their lives being, they need to learn how to know Him and love Him in these days. And I’m challenged to remember, that even as we put all of our efforts towards teaching our girls about following Christ, that we don’t fall into the trap of doing even that for someone else’s approval and acclaim. Because even this? Is in danger of becoming about something other than Him and who they should be in Him.

It’s hard, friends. But I’m going to try my best to be steadfast and not let this become just another land mine on the mommy road.

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