About two weeks ago, I had to take a day off work to clean my house. We’re not talking that deep, scrub the baseboards type of cleaning. No, I mean I took a day of work just to get us back to being able to sit on our furniture, actually use the dishes & have relatively clean clothes. I’m not proud. It’s pretty inexcusable.
But here are my excuses anyway:
1. I’ve barely been home. As you may have read, we recently went on a few little day trips. In between that, there’s the usual stuff at school, work and life that’s kept me away from the home base a bit. It’s amazing how messy the house gets when you only use it for showers & sleeping.
2. We had a few necessary home improvement projects that just added to the mess until they got completed.
3. I live with two males.
4. Well… most of you have met me. You know I’m not really a great house, car, desk or purse keeper.
The whole ordeal had me feeling like a pretty bad mom, wife and just woman in general. Because I feel bad about a lot of silly things a lot. Because anxiety’s a bitch.
However, before I even got home from dropping off Brody at school a whole 30 seconds before the tardy bell, another one of my friends had called me upset about something she just knew made her a bad mom. (To the contrary, being worried about it actually shows what a good mom she is.) And I realized something I already knew, but tend to forget: We’re all too damn hard on ourselves.
(Yes, this is definitely one of those ra-ra, you can do it! type of posts. Sometimes you just need to read/write one of those. So, you go, you!)
I have a lot of friends who are busy being awesome every day doing many different things. The one thing they all have in common though is that none of them are busy doing just one thing. Whether it’s marriage and career, kids and career, marriage and kids or career and other career, or whatever else, they all have quite a few eggs in the basket. Sometimes a few of those eggs get dropped. It happens. It’s life. The thing is just learning how to let that dropped egg not ruin everything else. That’s the tricky part. I’m horrible at that part.
I used to think that the answer might be to work as hard as you possibly can to get better at what you’re bad at. And while I’m sure sometimes that is the case, maybe the answer is to just be fine at being bad at some things. Most likely, it’s hardly the end of the world. Someone else is good at it. Leave it to them.
An example: I’ve come to terms with the fact that I’m not good with other people’s children. Don’t get me wrong, being around me doesn’t jeopardize their safety or anything. They’ll get fed and I’ll do my best to keep them from bleeding, but they’re probably going to be bored. Because I’m a good Brody mom, I really don’t know how to interact with other children. My kid likes calculators and hockey statistics. Don’t like that? Here’s a bubble wand. Occupy yourself.
This fact (and, who are we kidding, social anxiety) keeps me from volunteering for a lot of things at Brody’s school. I send in money, attend parent conferences and try to do my part, but I leave the interactions to other parents. Parents who are much better at that stuff than I am. Everyone, Brody included, is happier that way. I’ve finally accepted it.
Now, if I could just learn to accept the other things I’m not so great at, maybe I could start better appreciating the things I do well. And there’s actually plenty of them, I (and other people, right? Hopefully?) just get stuck on the negative. That can’t be good. Time to try to write off the negative and go with the positive. Maybe after I actually get the house clean though.