Lately I have been feeling like people get the wrong impression of me, an image has been depict in the mind and to me its quite unfamiliar. Yes, I am perhaps more patient where other may feel strained, yes, I can be calm, where some might feel rage and yes, I have moments of creativity and flare on days when others may feel exhausted of inspiration. However, I am also a deeply flawed human being thats often simply scraping by, trying to push through my vulnerabilities to put one foot in front of another and just keep on moving. Those who look on at edited and curated moments of my motherhood need not worry. I am no more and no less, side by side I am in the thick of it with you, set in survival mode whilst seeking out the joy.
I often refer to my life as chaotic but that does not even bare the weight of the myriad of things that it is. My every day is a swirling, noisy, madness where the simple and mundane can become a mission impossible. I get physically lost under the mountains of laundry and the village of crumbs that have collected between the cracks. Its messy in my mind and its messy under the kitchen sink, there are days when I bury things away in a darkened cupboard and days when I let it all spill out. It is hard to carry the mental and emotional load of raising and educating a young family, particularly if they way in which you choose to do that is considered a little unconventional. Outside of my own four walls I am deeply aware that I ruffle feathers, raise eyebrows and challenge narratives that many have accepted to be the ‘norm,’ and this too, holds weight on already tired shoulders. However, just because I consciously do things differently, because I believe that children should be treated as whole people, with love and connection over control and coercion, because I reject the current education system and believe I can better nurture a love of life long learning at home; that does not mean that I am a picture perfect, peaceful parent. It also doesn’t mean that I sit behind my wagging finger passing judgement at anyone who doesn’t reach this unattainable vision of the mother, who has it all together.
There are days when I raise my voice despite knowing that it will achieve nothing but further disconnect leading to more tension, resulting in even more challenging behaviour. There are day’s when I wrongfully shame my children or belittle their feelings because in the moment, I am unable to manage my level of frustration, because I am triggered and drowning in my own unmet needs. There are days when I scroll my phone for a bit too long because I would rather disappear into a corner of the internet numb, than break up another sibling fight or deal with a melt down over offering the wrong shaped pasta. We all have sides of ourselves that remind us of a cold and stormy day, we want to hide from the rain despite knowing its the very thing we need for the nourishment of our souls. So no, I am not at all zen, I do not make home made play doh or cook gluten free nutritious meals from scratch, I don’t have beautiful montessori shelves and despite watching Mrs Hinch daily on Instagram, my home is pretty much a mess! (But I do harpic my toilets daily and that does feel like a wonderful achievement!)
However, there is very little use in spending my days focusing on what I am not because those quiet imperfections and sweeping moments of ‘not enough’ are not even a whisper to my children, who truly love beyond measure, whether their packed lunch was gourmet or not. So whilst you are there looking at me, decoding my day to day and theorising on how I ‘do it all,’ I am likely looking right back, questioning exactly the same. What becomes important is where we fix our gaze and how we collectively frame our thoughts as mothers who are laced in both unconditional love and undeniable imperfection.
The beauty of being flawed is that it presents me with daily opportunities to grown and learn, to heal from old wounds and to rise above the torments that reside like unwanted visitors. Each time I speak to my children in a way isn’t honouring them as person, I have to ask myself why? I am constantly peeling back the layers to understand myself a little more, believe me, there is power in the unknown. It leads you takes you to a place of discovery, investment in yourself, belief that change is always possible and nothing in this life