If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard, “motherhood is the greatest joy you will ever experience”, I’d be a millionaire. And if I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard, “motherhood is tough and exhausting”, I’d stack my money to the ceiling. It’s reality. No matter how calm, patient or “on point” your parenting skills are, you’re always going to have bad days. And you know what? That’s okay.
I’ve seen my fair share of bad days lately. Our 19-month-old just got over having the stomach flu, didn’t really have much of an appetite (unusual for her) and to top it all off, has started saying “no” incessantly and getting very angry with us. We’re thinking she’s entering the terrible twos early, and hoping and praying this is just a phase.
These past couple of weeks I’ve tried my best to be patient with her and show her stern, but gentle discipline, but it’s been really, really tough. I’ve cracked and definitely lost my cool a handful of times, and I’ve never been the type to question my parenting skills – but it’s times like these I start to. Is she acting out because of the way I treat her? What did I do to make her act this way? It’s a horrible downward spiral that sucks us moms into thinking we’re doing a terrible job.
But, we’re not doing a terrible job, mamas – we’re actually doing a tremendous job caring for the most unpredictable humans ever. These bad days are what make us stronger and they’re important. They cause us to feel real, raw emotion that we’ve never experienced before and teach us to show our children grace even when they’re driving us up the wall. They build us up and transform us into mom warriors (if we can handle unnecessary temper tantrums in public, we can handle anything).
Best part, the bad days are so easily redeemed when the good days come along. Those sweet, good days, or good moments erase every 2 a.m. groggy feeding, or walk down the block kicking and screaming and any mean “no” we’ve ever heard. It’s in these good moments our child’s love and their little personality shines through those undesirable bad days.
This is obviously very hard to see in the moment, but the next time you’re going through a tough season, day, or moment with your child try to reflect on the good times and how much this moment will help you grow and understand your child more. These bad moments are very mere and will most likely vanish from your memory (unless they’re super horrific, then you’ll definitely remember), so truly live in the good moments and try your best to fight through the not-so-good with gratitude.
I’d absolutely love to hear about your good and bad days. Please feel free to comment below!