Can I admit something horrible? an unforgivable mom-sin? (which is the worst kind)
I wrote down daughter’s birthday on the wrong date.
No, seriously, I wrote it down wrong on my calendar and had no idea of my mistake, even after looking at it for almost a month.
My baby girl’s birthday is September 24th, but I wrote it down on the 28th.
We aren’t supposed to admit when we make mistakes like that. Moms are not supposed to make mistakes like this. It opens a door for others to the silently judge us and our priorities as pertains to our children.
“How could she have gotten her kid’s birthday wrong?”
“Seriously? How did the correct date not stick in your mind?”
“Birthdays are a big deal! How could you mess that up?”
…and the worst mom-shame of all…
“I would never do that”
Well, you know what? I am human. I make mistakes. Sometimes, my mistakes affect my kids and that is the worst feeling in the world. Thankfully though, Laelynn is not old enough to know that her mommy got the date wrong and almost forgot her birthday. No harm, no fowl. So why admit it?
Because if we all stop lying about how perfect we are, maybe there can be less judging and mom-shaming for the next generation of imperfect mothers.
No one claims to be perfect out loud; that would leave us open to be criticized for being stuck up and hypocritical. But we only admit the funny mistakes or the ones we are sure that other moms can relate to so that we don’t risk feeling like less than a good mom.
Here’s the thing though, mistakes aren’t meant to be weighed to see if they are acceptable or not. Mistakes are simply…mistakes. They are evidence of our humanity. They are opportunities to mirror the grace, humility, and forgiveness that we receive through Christ. He forgave us before we even wanted to be forgiven, before we were sorry, before we even realized we were guilty…even though He actually was perfect and had every right to judge us.
Don’t forget who you are, moms.
You are human. You make mistakes too. You are going to do things that other people will disagree with. You are going to make mistakes that will affect your kids. You are going to fail.
Don’t forget who you are, moms.
You are the forgiven child of the King. You have been given the extravagant love of your Creator. You have been equipped with exactly the right tools to raise your unique little humans. Your failures can also be your greatest successes when you use them to show your kids how to be honest and humble in a world that only values perfection. You can do this. You can overcome this culture of Pinterest perfection and be real.
When my mom asked me “So what are you doing for Laelynn’s birthday on Sunday?” and I realized my mistake, my heart sank to my toes. And as I scrambled to get something, anything, together to celebrate her, I felt like the worst mother in the entire world. But you know what? It ended up being a gift.
You see, I tend to get caught up in making things as perfect as possible and I compare what I do for my kids to what other people do for their kids. That can really be distracting from what really matters. Shame on me. What matters is making sure my kids know that I love them more than my own life. What matters is that they feel treasured and special. What matters has nothing to do with the perfect setting or the matching decorations or the guest list.
Having literally just a couple days to figure out how to make this happen made me focus on what could I do that was simple but made her happy. In the end, the choices were simplistic and humble, but she had a blast. As I watched her dimples deepen with every squeal of delight and joy, I was reminded of what really mattered and that was a blessing to me.
I hope that admitting my cringe-worthy mistake makes you feel a little less judged today, moms. After all, at least you didn’t almost miss your kid’s birthday… 😉