Our lawn is covered in dandelions. Mostly because we are too cheap to spring for the lawn treatments that many of our neighbors use, but also because there is a part of me that sort of enjoys it every spring when suddenly these bright bursts of yellow pop up to wave good-bye to the winter and welcome the sunshine. No matter how many times I tell them that dandelions are actually weeds, my kids don’t seem to care. Every day since they appeared, I have received a tiny bouquet of wilted dandelions. Hand-delivered with love from the humans who think I’m pretty great, despite the fact that I went from polite to yelling in record time today.
My kids don’t care that dandelions are weeds. They see the beauty and they want to share that beauty as an expression of love.
Sometimes, I worry that everyone around me will know that deep down….I’m a weed. I’m not ACTUALLY a real flower; I’m just faking it. Eventually, they will find out that I don’t have my act together like they think I do and the color will fade. Will they want anything to do with me then?
This fear of being found out is something so many mothers life with daily. We look around us and think that we are failing on every level and no matter how many times people may tell us it isn’t true, it’s a hard feeling to shake, isn’t it?
Let me be very clear because I need this reminder just as much as everyone else. You are a good mom. I am a good mom. There is no need to hide your mess because we are all just a bit messed up. And guess what? By that logic, we can assume that our kids are probably also going to be messed up to a certain extent.
I don’t have to worry about messing my kids up.
You don’t have to worry that you are messing your kids up because you raised your voice after asking them to put on shoes for the fifteenth time. You will not mess them up by feeding them cereal for dinner three days in a row. You will not mess them up if they are not in THAT preschool. You will not mess them up if you let them have that extra 45 minutes of screen time today.
So relax. Messy humans are the best kind, after all. You are exactly who they need. Give them your best as often as you can and then let’s just all agree to be okay with giving them all we have left when “our best” is long gone.
So whether you get a fist-full of dandelions or a gorgeous bouquet or nothing at all this Mother’s Day, know this. You are not fooling anyone, Mama. Just be you and let that be enough.